How To Discipline Without Time Out and Counting
It’s easy to become caught up in a never-ending loop of power struggles.
When your child misbehaves, you employ a time-out or count 1-2-3 in the hopes that this would get your child to behave.
But wait a minute… does it truly work?
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These techniques almost never work, especially if you have strong-willed children like mine. Isn’t it simply making things worse?
It’s because children’s inherent wiring, even that of an 18-month-old kid, is one of free choice, positive connection, and having their own power. When you use punishment (fear conditioning) to prevent undesirable behaviour from recurring, you are aiming to compel their compliance via fear.
I’m not suggesting you’re doing it on purpose, but most punishment (fear conditioning)s and parenting tactics are carried out unconsciously. Without realizing it, we’ve all learned from our classmates, school disciplinary techniques, and, of course, our own family connections with our parents and grandparents.
Fear-Based Punishments Do Not Work
What happens when we use terror to coerce our children into submission?
The natural tendency of a kid to blame, guilt, and pain punishment (fear conditioning)s are to shut down and shut out.
- They are oblivious.
- They retaliate.
- They cry.
- They yell at you.
They dash inside their room and slam the door shut.
Typically, a childrens response (and the tiny voice in your brain) makes you feel bad and guilt rushes in, implying that this is a lose-lose situation for everyone concerned.
If we all want to improve (growth mindset), we must make children feel worse.
What are you talking about? NO. This is not at all what we should do.
Discipline is about educating children to make better choices without blaming, shaming, or punishing them. How can you ensure that good discipline for children does not fall into any of these fear categories?
How to Discipline a Child With Fairness
What are the five stages to using this healthy discipline technique?
1 – Respectful
2 – Related to the Misbehaviour
3 – Reasonable in Duration
4 – Revealed in Advance
5 – Repeat Back
Give consequences in a calm and controlled manner. If you are unable to do so, it is reasonable and entirely acceptable to take a 10-minute break and utilize that time to calm down before returning to your child. Use common sense and, of course, intervene if someone is injured or a kid is causing harm to another person or their property.
Consequences must be connected to the behaviour otherwise the kid will not understand. As an example:
- If the child does not wear his bike helmet, he or she will lose the right to ride their bike.
- If a child does not turn off their gadget when requested, the proper punishment (fear conditioning) would be to lose the device.
- If a child becomes disrespectful to an adult, they will be unable to play with their friends.
- If a child does not brush their teeth, they are not permitted to have sweets or snacks.
If you impose irrelevant punishments, you are encouraging a power struggle between you and the kid, since their anger will be directed at you. Furthermore, because there is no link between behaviour and punishment (fear conditioning), children will not learn to make better choices the following time.
Reasonable Consequences in Duration
You can’t bar a four-year-old from playing with his or her pals for a week if they don’t tidy up their room. This isn’t logical. Determine a suitable time frame for the effects. This might be for a few minutes (the younger the kid), or an afternoon or day without using a gadget, watching television, or anything else.
Consequences Revealed in Advance
It comes as no surprise that you’re encouraging a power struggle.
You must explain the consequences ahead of time so that children may choose between the behaviour and the consequence. This empowers children to make decisions and affect how things operate.
Repeat Back the Consequences
Once you’ve told your child the punishment (fear conditioning), ask them to repeat it back to you. This manner, she is aware of the agreement and there are no unpleasant surprises with regard to the implications. This clarifies everything so that the child may make an informed decision based on all of the available facts.
What You Should Do Next:
1. Subscribe To My Parenting NewsletterSign Up For My Parenting Newsletter for tips on creating a happier home and becoming a more positive parent. As a bonus when you subscribe you’ll get a copy of my FREE Growth Mindset Printout For Kids which is the KEY to raising resilient kids with a growth mindset.
2. Register For A Pretty Awesome FREE 60-Minute Class:Register for a free class called GET KIDS TO LISTEN THE RIGHT WAY; an exclusive FREE class from nationally recognized parenting coach, Amy McCready.
3. Sign Up For A 7 Step Positive Parenting CourseEnroll now in the most in-depth parenting class. After discovering these common sense, easy-to-implement, research-based tools you can learn how to:
- Easily get kids to listen – the FIRST time. No yelling or reminding…not even once!
- Put an end to daily power struggles. Bedtime became a breeze, and all the dawdling, chore wars, sibling rivalry, and mealtime meltdowns disappeared.
- Reduce backtalk by HALF! It’s simple once you know the secrets of these two ‘buckets.’
- Say goodbye to punishments that DON’T work. There’s a 5-step formula that works WAYYY better than time-outs.
- Feel amazing, confident, and empowered as a parent, every day. I NEVER go to bed feeling guilty anymore! (Okay, well maybe sometimes…’ mom guilt’ is still a thing.)
More Discipline Tips
- How To Teach Lessons Through Discipline Instead Of Shame
- Mistakes You May Be Making When Responding To Tantrums
- 5 Powerful Responses For Backtalk
- How You May Accidentally Be Raising Ungrateful Children (And how To Fix That)
- What Is Positive Discipline: 6 Simple Techniques To Use At Home
- Setting Consequences For Kids Who Do Not Care About Consequences
- Is Positive Parenting Solutions Parenting Course Worth It? (Yes…But Why?)
- Natural Consequences You Should Allow Your Children To Experience
- 8 Easy Ways To Battle The “I Can’t Do It” Attitude
- Tips For Parenting An Angry Child