How to effectively teach your child discipline
Discipline is one of the most important, but at the same time one of the most incomprehensible words for parents. All parents are united in the fact that children need discipline, but there are a lot of opinions on how to achieve this.
Let us consider in more detail how best to teach a child to discipline. But first you need to figure out what it is.
Discipline and punishment
What do you associate the word “discipline” with? Punishment? Power? Positive reinforcement? All of these options are correct in their own way. Learning to discipline is teaching a person how to follow the norms of behavior, and for this, both punishment and positive reinforcement or demonstration of power may be suitable. In other words, discipline is a way to make a child behave properly.
However, the methods that parents use for this can vary greatly. Most parents apply punishment for this: they put the child in a corner, deprive him of any privileges or even spank. Some parents talk openly with the child, explain to him the expectations of his behavior and the consequences for breaking the rules. During conversations, parents use logical judgment and positive reinforcement.
Some of these methods are effective and allow the child to live happily and be successful, but others can turn him into a rebel who hates power and order.
How to teach a child discipline?
Accustoming a child to discipline is not an easy task. To do this, you will need a lot of patience, love and skills to influence a child.
1. Clearly state your expectations
How would you like your child to answer your questions? How would you like your child to behave in front of guests or in public? What do you mean by discipline and good behavior?
If you do not have answers to these questions, and you do not know clearly what the child should do in certain situations, then how can he know this? Parents should have clear expectations and explain to their child.
2. Use sanity
When setting your expectations, remember that no one is perfect. Identify specific real goals that are feasible for the child. If it is too difficult for the child to live up to your expectations, he can give up and take the path of least resistance.
3. Be consistent
Some parents themselves from time to time break the rules that they set, because it is convenient for them. However, in doing so, you show the child that breaking the rules is permissible. Consistently observing them, you thereby emphasize the importance of discipline. Follow the rules in all circumstances. But at the same time, one should not set too strict rules for the child or do something that can humiliate or embarrass him.
When you break the rules, this leads the child to the thought: “If parents break the rules, then why should I abide by them?”
4. Do not be too authoritarian
Parents are authoritative figures for the child in the family. However, it is up to you to decide which style to choose when communicating with your child – authoritarian or democratic. Consider the difference between them.
Authoritarian parents explain their demands with the phrase: “Because I said so!” They expect the child to follow the instructions without any explanation. Authoritarian education does not take into account the opinion of the child and can humiliate him. The older the children, the more they want to be respected. Therefore, adhering to an authoritarian style in raising children is not a good idea.
Unlike authoritarian parents, democrats clearly clarify their expectations and set limits. They show the child an example and praise him for his good behavior. In order to earn the respect of the child and convey to him your point of view, you should respect his opinion.
5. Keep in touch
When you are talking with a child, do not be distracted by anything. Interrupt all affairs, remove the mobile phone and look at the child. Only in this way will he understand that his words are important to you.
The child will listen better to you and adhere to established rules when he feels an emotional connection with you. He needs your empathy. Try to understand how he feels. When you start talking to him based on these positions, he will begin to listen to your words.
6. Communicate openly
Do not make categorical statements, after which your conversation with the child ends. For example, if he refuses to visit, you should not tell him: “I said that we are going – that’s the point.” Instead, try to understand the child and ask, “Why don’t you want to visit?” When you understand the reasons for this behavior, it will be much easier to correct it.
7. Use the mistakes of the child as an opportunity to teach him new things.
Use the mistakes made by the child to help him become better as an individual. If you see that he is doing something wrong, do not rush to intervene or criticize him. Keep calm and let your child understand what he did wrong.