On The Bright Side

I know I have to say 'No' to my child when he misbehaves, but how can I make sure I'm getting in enough positive reinforcement?

Do the math:  The goal is always to praise a child more than you discipline them--but how much more?  Three?  Four times as much?  That means for every 10 corrections (“Don't hit your brother!”  “Chew with your mouth closed!”) You’re trying to find 30-40 positive things to say!  It can be a pretty big goal to work towards, so look for all the little opportunities ("Thank you for putting your shoes away."  "I like the way you're speaking to your sister.")

See positive reinforcement in action:  As a rule, I know if I've had to say "No" more than 3 times in 5 minutes then it is time to change my game.  When my kids are acting up the most, that's when they need to hear the most praise from me.  But boy, can it be hard to find something positive to say in the middle of a temper tantrum!  Try digging up some old examples:  "Remember yesterday when you did all your chores without being asked and then you got a sticker?  That was awesome, wasn't it?  I was so proud of you!"

Nanny Carrie's Tip:
Do away with apologies.  Instead of asking your child to say "I'm sorry for hitting,” or "I won't use bad words anymore," get them to focus on the positive.  "Next time I'll be more gentle," or "I'm going to use my best manners."  It gives them something constructive to work towards instead of focusing on what they did wrong.

Picture of Nanny Carrie

Author: Nanny Carrie

Nanny Carrie always knew she wanted a big family, so she made it her business to borrow everybody else's children until she had her own. You can find her embracing the organized chaos of life with five kids and loving (almost) every minute!

Top Posts

The Ultimate List of Free Printables For Kids
My Top 10 Educational TV Shows for Kids
DIY: Baby Pull-Up Bars
Why This Isn't Working For Working Parents
5 Ways to Stop the 5am Wake-Ups
How to Introduce Kids to Gardening (With Free Printables!)
35 Baby Names That Will Be Popular in 2019
7 Best Bottles for Breastfed Babies Who Refuse a Bottle
My Only Child Won't See Another Kid For Months. Here's What I'm Doing About It
How to Survive the First 6 Months of Daycare During Cold and Flu Season