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Behavior Modification in Children
What is your child's behavior telling you?
- I'm angry.
- I'm frustrated.
- I hate you.
- I won't listen to you.
- You don't like me.
- I know better than you.
- I don't understand.
- I wish everyone would leave me alone.
Do you long for your child's behavior to say these things instead?
- I need you.
- I know you care about me.
- I am glad you are my parent.
- I can trust you.
- I love you.
You may be able to see your child needs behavior modification,
chances are your child does not. Child behavior modification never
works without the child's cooperation in some form. Owning their part
in the process is a must! (Click here for a great article about acting
Please help! I feel like I've hit a brick wall with my child!
Does your family feel fragmented? Do you long for more closeness?
If this is how you feel, it's not fun, I know. You probably have an idea of what you would like your family life to be like - and it's just not the way you want it.
Thankfully, this is a scenario that you can do something about - and you can start right now.
Before you even try any new child behavior modification strategies, here are a couple of things you can try right away to make forward, positive movement in your family.
1. Read through the free short report "10 Ways to Reconnect With Your Family". This report will encourage you to take control of your family's everyday schedule and intentionally build togetherness. You will never regret taking the time and effort to do this and you know what else? Building a tight-knit family means you are automatically empowering your kids to listen to you as they grow and stay close to your influence.
That's what healthy relationships are all about.
IMPORTANT: If you are struggling with a disruptive youngster, you know you need to help your child in his frustrations. If things have just started to get challenging, you may wonder if you even have a problem or not.
2. Print out our Behavior Log. Use it to keep track of your child's behavior for a week or two. Then you'll have a better idea of what you're really dealing with. Doing this one thing can help give you clarity and perspective.
3. Is the situation with your precious child still more than you know how to handle? Then take a deep breath and another step towards finding the right solution for you and your child. Head over to Empowering Parents where you will find an enormous amount of articles and conversation written by common sense experts and other parents who have been in the trenches, too. I have found this can really help.
Getting a kid to do take responsibility for their part of the behavior modification process is more than a little tricky, isn't it? I
think we all understand we can't force change on another person.
So what do we do?
Watching our precious children spiral out of control is heart
wrenching. Our family being torn apart was never a part of the plan!
Well, if we can't make the behavior modifications in our children we
know need to be made, can we do something ourselves?
==> My experience says, yes we can. But Mom, you
need to know, there are no guarantees when it comes to parenting. I
like to view parenting as extending my influence to my children, but
control? No such thing.
So modifying our children's behavior might look a little like this:
- Child acts out.
- Parent stops and thinks, deciding upon response (not reaction!)
- Parent uses specific language designed to cool off and influence
the situation - not inflame it.
- Parent walks away.
- Child thinks about it and complies.
- As the saying goes, rinse and repeat.
Now, obviously this presentation of this method of behavior
modification in children is a tad simplified. And truly, if this is a
way of behaving for you, it will take practice. I know I've had to be
patient in our home as I learned better techniques. But it was very
exciting when these ideas worked. Not to mention a huge relief!
So give it some thought. Consider the changes you'd like to see happen
your homelife. Do some research on what you can do as the parent in
your own home to influence change. Remember, you have total control
over your own behaviors. That's great news!
Maybe they should call child behavior modification, parental
behavior modification instead. I know this idea has worked for me,
in my own parenting.
For a useful and related article, see Managing the Meltdown
If you want to know what parenting program I can recommend that helps parents with struggling kids, that would be The Total Transformation program, hands down. Part of why this program works is because it supports parents extremely well.
Related articles for behavior modification children and teenagers.
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What does help for parents with troubled teenagers look like? Who needs more help - the parent or the teen? Good questions we discuss here.
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How to control an out of control child is a vital question if your home has one. Loving your child when you often don't like him is one of the greatest parenting challenges of all.
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Getting help for problem children requires doing some research and coordinating your family's needs with your potential solution.
How to deal with teenager attitudes
Wondering how to deal with teenagers attitudes? This is such a common problem amongst teens - almost every parent has an "attitude" conversation at some point.
Remember, I am giving you my thoughts as a long time parent, not as a
therapist. This website does not dispense professional, medical, or
Please consult a qualified professional about your own situation.
Colleen Langenfeld is a mother with over 29 years of parenting experience and helps other busy moms around the globe at www.paintedgold.com.
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