Thursday, April 17, 2014

Importance of Family in Everyone's Lives

Your childhood family has deep meaning and significance throughout your entire life. The major role family plays in shaping young adults is beautifully captured in this video of One Direction playing "Story of My Life":


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Positively Transforming Your Kids’ Behavior Through Shaping

Are there any of your kids’ behaviors that you would like to change? Perhaps you feel frustrated that your child won’t practice the piano without being nagged, doesn’t listen the first time, or is super slow in getting ready for school. By the time you are really bothered by a behavior, your child is probably well entrenched in behaving this way.

You may have resorted to yelling, threatening and taking away privileges to try to improve your child’s behavior. While that may have worked one day, you probably found you needed to yell louder, come up with bigger threats or take away more privileges to get your child to behave again.

What Researchers Have Discovered About Punishment

By the time frustrated parents turn to Dr. Alan Kazdin at the Yale Parenting Center they are at their wits end! He tells them what he’s learned from the research:

"Punishment - mild, severe, abusive - changes behavior only at the moment it is delivered. It doesn't change the overall level or rate of the behavior. So if you have a child who's doing something horrible and you smack them, it'll stop it for the moment but it won't decrease the number of times they do the horrible thing.

So there's an alternative. Decide what behavior you want, sometimes called the positive opposite, and praise or encourage that. That makes the negative behavior drop out. You can actually eliminate a behavior by rewarding or praising the opposite behavior. Punishment won't do it."

Shaping the Behavior You Want

What does it mean to shape your child’s behavior? It involves five steps:

(Finish reading this article on the Priceless Parenting site)

Monday, March 31, 2014

Multiple Warnings Lead to Anger Not Better Behavior

Do you ever find yourself giving your kids multiple warnings? Do you ever say "How many times do I have to tell you?"

Watch this video clip from the movie “Kramer versus Kramer” and pay attention to how this dad feels as his son repeatedly ignores his warnings.



For parenting ideas that work better than multiple warnings and commands, take a Priceless Parenting online parenting class starting today!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Understanding Babies Who Cry Inconsolably

One of the most stressful parts of caring for our baby daughter was when she cried and nothing we did helped. It can lead even the strongest parent to tears!

We knew babies cried a lot but we didn't know how helpless we would feel when we couldn't comfort her. We also didn't know how common this type of crying is for all babies.

The Period of PURPLE Crying acronym captures what is going on:

Peak of Crying - Your baby may cry more each week, the most in month 2, then less in months 3-5.
Unexpected - Crying can come and go and you don't know why.
Resists Soothing - Your baby may not stop crying no matter what you try.
Pain-like Face - A crying baby may look like the are in pain, even when they are not.
Long Lasting - Crying can last as much as 5 hours a day or more.
Evening - Your baby may cry more in the late afternoon and evening.

Dr. Ronald Barr provides an excellent explanation of the PURPLE crying period in this video:



Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Help Me Do It By Myself

When I was a child and struggling to do something, I often went to my dad for help. However, I wanted just enough help so that I could feel I had pretty much done it on my own. If he gave me what I deemed to be too much help, I got mad … not that much help, just a little!

Fortunately for me, my dad had a lot of patience. He was willing to try giving me hints on how to solve a problem without solving it for me. It certainly could not have been an easy balance for him!

I wanted to feel proud of what I had accomplished on my own. Even though I needed his help, if I had just a little help then it qualified as doing it on my own.

The next time your kids come to you for help, think about how you can give just enough help to get them unstuck without solving it for them.





Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Not Having Enough Time with My Kids

A mom wrote that her biggest parenting challenge is not having enough time with her kids. What an important realization! This is a problem worth solving. Your kids blossom when they have plenty of your time and you feel more relaxed.

Although I don’t know this mom’s personal situation, I do know that it is worth getting creative to figure out how to free up more time to be with her kids. Your kids keep growing and changing every day and there is no way to get that precious time back once it’s gone.

Have you found ways to free up more time so you can be with your kids? While each person’s situation is different, freeing up more time often involves things like

  • Changing work schedules or situations (like no longer traveling for work)
  • Letting less important tasks slip (perhaps the house won’t be quite as clean!)
  • Asking neighbors, friends or relatives for help
  • Finding ways to involve your kids in your tasks (like including them in meal preparation)

You can guarantee that in 10 years you won’t look back and wish you had kept the bathrooms a little cleaner. However, you will look back and appreciate the memories of spending time with your kids.



Friday, March 7, 2014

Releasing Emotions Holding You Back

Emotions are a powerful source of information and inspiration. Fear can spring you into action when danger is near. Love can give you the courage to stand up for someone. Anger can inspire you to fight to change something that isn’t right.

When Emotions Get Stuck and Hold You Back

Emotions start causing problems when they get in your way of success. This can happen when you experience something negative and you unconsciously decide to make sure that never happens again.

Have you noticed your kids being held back by their emotions? In the following stories, kids are being negatively affected by their strong, persistent feelings.

Brian loved playing baseball and was good at it. One day he was up to bat he got hit hard by the pitcher’s ball. He immediately went down in pain but eventually recovered enough to take first base and finish the game. From then on he found various excuses for missing practice and not playing baseball.

Isabel knew she was prepared to take the science test. She had studied all week plus done well on all the homework. However, when she sat down to take the test, her mind went blank.

(finish reading the article on Priceless Parenting)