Grandma Jeddah's Porch
Is it Me or the Kids
Maybe it’s you--not the kids!
Mothers often know when they are going overboard in their discipline methods. For some, the warning sign is boisterous yelling; for others it might be unrestrained hitting. And then there are those who resort to the less obvious forms of excess-- cruel name calling, or demoralizing comments and treatment. Each person is different and symptoms may vary, but what remains the same is the desire to lash out at what appears to be the object of their rage, or . . . sometimes . . . at what happens to be nearest or weakest.
Here are 7 spectacular tips to guide mothers toward managing their own behavior before attempting to manage their child’s.
1. Get enough rest.
Everyone knows what it feels like when you haven’t had enough rest the night before. You feel drowsy and on edge, it doesn’t take much for a child’s whining, constant refrain for a sweet, or disobedient behavior to get you into your “mean” zone.2. Avoid stimulants.
Coffee and excessive sugar can lead to mood swings. After initially ingesting such substances, your mood shifts into a pleasurable and cheerful mode. However, once the initial rush has subsided you become cranky, irritable and impatient. That this can lead to unnecessary yelling or hitting.3. Learn your triggers.
If you and a friend or family member have had words with one another and this usually has you hot tempered for the rest of the day, acknowledge this, and use this information to put you on guard when your children misbehave. During these periods When you find your children behaving in a fashion that‘s irritating to you, try retreating to your room for your own personal time-out rather than lashing out in rage. Often times your children's misbehavior can be a reaction to seeing you upset. Strive for under disciplining rather than excessive discipline, during these time periods, as you are more likely to react due to anger rather than the inappropriate behavior.4. Learn assertive training techniques.
These methods teach you how to get your message, feelings and differences across to others in a controlled manner. Many mothers are simply unaware that there is a different and effective way to communicate their strong feelings to others without shouting.5. Develop hobbies and interests.
Although maintaining a family and household can be time consuming, developing interests in other things that can distract and relax your mind is important. Learn how to crochet, knit, sew or garden. Read novels if that’s what you enjoy. Write for personal pleasure or try having your work published in a magazine. If you’re into art, try painting, designing beaded jewelry or making crafts. If you enjoy cooking, learn some new recipes. Find ways of making yourself feel good.6. Get exercise.
Exercising releases endorphins that naturally help you feel blissful and in a good mood. It’ one of the best ways to give yourself a quick high that leaves no residual negative effects. Learn to belly dance or hula dance. Run or walk back and forth throughout your house for 15 or twenty minutes. If privacy is not a problem, run or walk in your back yard. Take your kids for a walk around the corner . . . maybe two. Walk to the store. Get a miniature trampoline for your home. Brainstorm ideas or ways you can give yourself a healthy workout.7. Reward Yourself for good behavior.
You often hear about incentive charts as a means of encouraging your children toward better behavior, but have you ever thought about rewarding yourself for good parenting habits? Why not? If it can work for your child it can work for you, too, insha’Allah!
Keep a record of your successful efforts at disciplining your child patiently. Each day you manage your child’s behavior in a respectful manner—without hitting, shouting, or losing control—place a star on your star chart. When you get 10 stars, reward yourself with a treat: Check out a novel from the library; watch a documentary on the computer; give yourself a break from cooking dinner and order piazza; use paper plates and cups and plastic forks and spoons for a day or two so you won’t have to wash dishes; buy yourself dress apparel or a nice piece of jewelry. Make a list of incentives with which you can reward yourself when you reach your number goal of say, 10 stars. After your first 10 stars, try for another 10 until your new discipline methods become as natural as a mother cat stroking her new baby kittens.
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Discipline without Disrespecting
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