When the parents are told that harsh practices such as spanking, consequences and frequent time-outs do not help in disciplining the kids, most of them get surprised.
The matter of fact is that children tend to learn things which happen around them. So, if you want to teach your kid, you will have to put yourself as a role model in front of your kids. We all want our kids to be kind and compassionate to the others. How can they develop such traits if they are not taught about these characteristics? Surely punishment is not going to teach them the compassion and kindness. It doesn’t even teach the kids to behave and stay disciplined.
Now, there is another misconception. Even the peaceful parents think about time-out as the perfect way to punish the kids without hurting. Occasional time-outs may be okay but if you are issuing frequent time-outs you are doing it very wrong. Most of the times when children misbehave, they actually have the burden of emotions they find hard to carry. Hence, they misbehave. That’s the time when you should connect with them and try to empathize rather than putting them in time-out. This is the matter of calculation.
Having that said, there are a few things that you can do in order to guide your kids without punishing.
Manage your own emotions
The reason most of us get aggressive while parenting is that we find it very hard to manage our own big feelings and anger. Hence, children seem to be the soft victims. And when they misbehave, we find it more than logical, in fact crucial, to ‘correct’ their mistakes. But, it’s quite easy to manage your emotions. You can start by taking deep breathe while getting your focus off the disturbing matters.
Empathize with the kid’s feelings
When the kid gets overwhelmed by adrenaline, he acts out. During that time, the kid’s ability to learn things get hampered until the flow of these negative emotion hormones is contained. So, the best practice here is to help your kid in containing these hormones. You can connect with your kid more in order to empathize with the big feelings he would have at that moment. It is the wonderful trick which works almost always.
What is it that children need to learn things they should learn? Yes, it’s the teaching that you provide, but it’s also the support which your kids would need in order to let those teachings program their minds. Consider the process of potty training. You wouldn’t get harsh while training your kid for that. In fact, you are going to provide complete and consistent support until the kid learns about it ideally. Follow the same lead in other matters too. When the child shows lack of discipline, it’s not something he should be punished for. It’s just the matter of something which he didn’t learn. So you need to teach your kid while ensuring him that you are there for him.
Set limits with empathy
When we talk about disciplining the kids, it’s always about making them follow the limits. Hence, you will need to tell them the limits they should stay within. It’s true that children may have their own perspectives about the things and those perspectives can possibly tell the kids to not follow the limits. All you need to do here is acknowledging their perspectives and convince them why the limits you are going to set are in their best interest.