Relinquish your power on the things that don’t matter

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by Tsh

Tsh is the founder of this blog and lives in Bend, Oregon with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

kids on swings
Photo by Wayne Silver

I don’t share many parenting tips here, mostly because I don’t have a lot.  I’ll venture into pantry organization or budgeting – but raising up the next generation?  Now that’s territory in which I feel rather unqualified to write.

That said – I do have a few tricks up my sleeve.  And this one is one I use often, and usually works brilliantly.

Offer pre-filtered choices.

Young children think concretely, and they often see the world in black and white.  They’re also vying for control in their life, and are constantly testing the waters of independence.

How often do you hear “I wanna do it!”?  If you’re me, you hear it all day long.  And it’s not a bad thing – it’s a sign of healthy confidence when your preschooler wants to put on her own socks, or carry his cereal bowl to the table.

The trick is to know when to give her the independence she wants, and when to reel her free spirit closer to you.

A few years ago I read the book Love and Logic by Foster Cline and Jim Fay, and it really transformed my parenting philosophy.  One of the authors’ key points is to allow freedom for the 95 percent of decisions that don’t matter, so that you can fully claim control for the 5 percent that do.

In other words, when the outcome isn’t important, give your child the power to choose.  When the outcome is important, make the decision unwaveringly and unapologetically – and hopefully, you’ve made enough independence deposits into your child’s account to keep him from being crushed when his freedom is relinquished.

Because young kids are easily overwhelmed, help narrow down their choices, so that they have finite options for decision-making.

You probably already do most of this, in some sense.  Let me show you what I mean.

Scenario #1

Your daughter, Anne, likes to dress herself in the morning.  You’re not going anywhere today, so it doesn’t really matter what she wears.  But if you give her free reign, she’ll unload her entire dresser and change six times before breakfast.

  • ANNE: I want to pick my clothes!
  • MOM: Sure.  Here is your pink shirt and your purple shirt.  Which one would you like?
  • ANNE: The pink shirt!

Anne was given the freedom to wear the pink shirt from a finite amount of options – the pink one or the purple one.

Scenario #2

You can also invent decisions to be made, almost in a silly way:

  • DAD: Hey bud, I’m having a ball with you at the park.  We need to go soon.  Should we leave now, or in ten minutes?
  • ETHAN: In ten minutes!
  • DAD: Sounds good.

Ethan was given the “power” to choose, but they’re still leaving the park.  Staying at the park all day wasn’t one of his options.

Scenario #3

This doesn’t always work – sometimes your daughter takes too long to decide, or she has a whiny attitude even about the choices she’s been given.  In this case, you simply make the decision and move onYou be the adult.

  • DAD: Lucy, I’d like you to pick the vegetable for dinner tonight.  Would you like green beans or broccoli?
  • LUCY: But I don’t want vegetables at dinner!
  • DAD: We need a vegetable at dinner because they’re good for our bodies, and besides, they’re yummy.
  • LUCY: But I don’t want one. (Ten seconds pass)
  • DAD: I’ll make the decision.  We’re having green beans.

And then the subject is changed to something else, and the decision is made and over with.

Scenario #4

Hopefully, if you’ve given your child enough decision-making power throughout the day for the insignificant choices, you can claim your responsibility as a parent by standing firm with the decisions that do matter.

  • MOM: Alright, Peter, it’s 7:30.  It’s time to brush your teeth and get ready for bed.
  • PETER: But I don’t want to go to bed!
  • MOM: I understand.  But your bedtime is 8 o’clock, and you were given lots of choices today.  Now it’s my turn to make the choice about what we do next.


Photo by Larry Page

Peter was probably given the decision about what cereal to eat for breakfast, whether to play with blocks or trucks after lunch, and which book to read before his quiet time.  So Mom can more easily claim the power to decide when he needs to hit the sack.

I don’t share this with the experience of 100% success.  But this idea has worked well with our incredibly independent four-year-old, and she is almost always a happy, compliant child.

To sum up:

Let your child “do it” when she asks, if the end result doesn’t matter.
• Allow her to make choices all throughout the day, choosing from a finite amount of selections.
• When your child doesn’t cooperate, make the decision for him and move on.
• You make the decisions that do matter, and claim your position as a parent cheerfully and unwaveringly.

For more on this idea about making independence deposits into your child’s account, along with other parenting ideas, I recommend picking up a copy of Love and Logic.

Do you have any experience with this technique in your relationship with your child?

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Comments

  1. I love the idea of independence deposits – that makes it sound so much less frustrating!

  2. Who says you don’t have parenting skills? This is fantastic! Definitely something for us to offer our children – choices.

    Rhea – Experiencing Motherhood´s last blog post…Induced Labor at 36 Weeks

  3. I really like this, I don’t know why I haven’t thought of it before! We’re in the process of trying to get pregnant so of course I’m reading everything I can get my hands on. This is something that I will definitely keep in mind as we have our children. thank you!

    Tabitha (From Single to Married)´s last blog post…Monday Musings – How Much is Your Pet Worth?

  4. Love Cline and Fay . . . an extension to the choices for little ones are consistent natural consequences to negative (or positive) behaviors.

  5. This method works great for us with my three-year-old. He loves making decisions and it seems to deter him from the fact that he’s going along with my initial request. Hope this works for teenagers!

    Aimee´s last blog post…An Indian Film, A New Spice Blend and a Giveaway

  6. When my kids were smaller, I used the park one all the time. Worked like a charm. “Do you want to leave now, or in 10 minutes?” I don’t think they ever picked “now.” :)

    Now I babysit a 2 yo and these small choices make a world of difference with her. Its such a headstrong age.

  7. I can attest to how well this works. We have used these methods with our two boys and the combination of my knowing that either choice works and their sense of autonomy and freedom is great.

    I know I don’t respond well to too many choices, so why would they? At the same time, no choice sets up everything as a battle of wills.

    This is a super post.

    Missy K´s last blog post…Cooking with the Net

  8. I discovered the Love and Logic series 6 years ago when I became a teacher — Teaching With Love and Logic really drove my management style in the classroom. I was psyched to find the Parenting series and have read through book a few times. I think it’s a great way to approach things with your children. As my little one is just 4 months old I have some time to test it out — but I believe in how it should work. Another important idea is to help the child figure out what s/he did wrong as opposed to directly telling him/her. Then help them as they sort out the best consequence – one that fits the “crime”.

    Allegra´s last blog post…Early crafting

  9. My mom did this over and over again with me when I was little and it always worked. She’d lay out three outfits and let me choose one. Or she’d offer three activities and let me choose.
    She also tried to major on the important things. She’d say, ‘if you want to dye your hair pink-no problem. But, the boy you want to date-let’s talk about him a little more.’ She had a great way of empowering me to make good decisions while letting me feel my independence on the silly things that can easily become too major. (And I never dyed my hair pink, anyhow).

    Nicole´s last blog post…LinkO-The I Don’t Want to Be Wimpy Version

  10. We do this a lot with our nearly-3-year-old, it works wonders.

    MaryAnne´s last blog post…Indoor water play

  11. We do this all the time with our two year old and it makes a huge difference in how much we all enjoy our day. My mom thinks we’re creating a monster I think — although she’d never say that! Her worry is that we’re setting up our daughter to have false expectations about just how much control she has over the world.
    I just think, who cares if I let her pick out the shopping cart we use? It means that she’ll sit nicely in it while we grocery shop. It’s not like when she’s 30 she’s not going to be able to pick her own one out :)

    darah7´s last blog post…bummer.

    • She really does have a lot of choices, and she will in the future. It’s not about getting whatever you want – it’s about making reasonable, logical choices that are healthy. From the moment we wake up, we make choices. Am I going to sleep in, or work out? Am I going to eat Grape Nuts or Cheerios? Should I take the freeway or shortcut through the neighborhoods? They’re morally-neutral choices, of course, but they’re still choices, and it’s good that we make healthy ones.

  12. This is something we need to try more in our household as we tend to get caught up in fights over silly stuff like which clothes to wear, what is an appropriate lunch for school, etc. If left completely up to them, our kids would choose pajamas and peanut.butter M&M sandwiches. By giving them a few acceptable options and letting them decide, we’ll all win. Thanks for sharing this technique.

  13. I would add that a lot of things really don’t matter. Matching socks? Not a big deal. Hairstyles? No sweat. I did draw the line when my son, who was four at the time, wanted me to buy him some patent leather mary janes to wear to my sister’s wedding. Even now, as our kids are older, they make a lot of their own choices. I really don’t fuss about the hair, as long as it’s clean. Clothing has to be modest, but other than that they’re on their own for the most part. It is gratifying to see that, even if you don’t employ this philosophy 100% all the time, your kids do really grow up to be thinking people who know how to make decisions.

    anja´s last blog post…Valley Transit Preparing to join Google Maps!

  14. Terrific advice! Children want to be empowered. When we give them the right tool set, it is absolutely incredible what they can accomplish. All your scenarios were sound and advice admirable. Great job.

    Writer Dad´s last blog post…The Blueprint is Here

  15. My wife and I are currently in a Love and Logic training at our church. It’s great to go through with your spouse and work together to empower your kids. Great stuff!

    Corey – Simple Marriage´s last blog post…Ask The Readers: What Are Your Marriage Essentials?

  16. yes! i learned one from my mom (who used it on us) that works every time–for all 7 of my children.

    do you want to go to bed at 8 o’clock,

    or do you want to STAY UP until 7:30?

    you bet they pick the latter every time…until they’re about 7 and learn the trick….

  17. I started using the “choices” technique when my son was around 2 years old and it has really helped to solve many of the typical toddler battles for independence. Some of the scenarios that play out in our house include:

    Me: It’s time for bed, let’s go brush your teeth.
    Son: No, I don’t want to go brush my teeth (melts to the floor, stands his ground)
    Me: You have two choices: you can either walk nicely to the bathroom to brush your teeth or I can carry you in there. Which would you rather do?
    Son: Walk to the bathroom.
    Me: Ok!

    Cara´s last blog post…Top 10 ways to repurpose used dryer sheets

  18. This is some great advice. I have employed it successfully with my kids while they are little, but not as successfully once they get older.

    As kids get older I have found this strategy doesn’t work as well, and you need to move on to a new method. They have figured out that the choice they want — stay on the computer, is not being presented when you say, do you want to get off now or in ten minutes? They get smart really fast.

    However, with littles this is a great suggestion because it allows them to start making choices without having large consequences attached. I have seen some children that are not allowed to make any choices, and when they get the chance to choose, even about something inconsequential, it can really be too much for them. They have never used their choosing muscles before, and that muscle is weak.

    I think another great benefit of this method is that children start to understand choices can have real implications. For example, when my child wants to choose their clothing: If it is a hot day, and they want to wear a sweater I warn of the consequences, and if they are not too dire (they will get sweaty and hot, but will not get heat stroke) I will let them wear it if they want to after listening and not heeding my warning. This shows some consequences in a pretty safe environment. They start to learn the lesson pretty fast that maybe Mommy does know what she is talking about. (Although I have been told this realization leaves again when they are teenagers).

    Thanks for reminding me of the technique, which I have been using, but can try to use more consciously in the future.

    Taylor at Household Management 101´s last blog post…Jan 29, Household Inventory – How to Create One Quickly And Easily

    • I have seen some children that are not allowed to make any choices, and when they get the chance to choose, even about something inconsequential, it can really be too much for them. They have never used their choosing muscles before, and that muscle is weak.

      Well said, Taylor. And yes, this method is a little more clear-cut with younger ones. I think a benefit with doing this younger is that they’re given the chance earlier on to make decisions – it’s not thrown at them in college for the first time, or even in high school.

  19. I have seen these Love and Logic guidelines work well for our two-year old. Our goal is to start raising Kaia now to be prepared for adulthood and I feel that giving her the confidence to make her own decisions is a skill that will benefit her and those around her in a huge way. She loves choosing things and I love the fact that we don’t argue about as much. We both feel good with the process.

    Betsy´s last blog post…Glimpses…

  20. This is a great technique and a really good reminder. We give our 4 yr old a choice between 2 outfits and it helps tremendously! I like the “leaving the park” one and will certainly be implementing that one this week :)

    Angie @ The Creative Mama´s last blog post…52 weeks: write your own mission statement.

  21. i guess we’ve been doing some of this without really realizing it. many of those scenarios are very familiar :) although i have to say that the last one is not something i would even try at our house – my son has very little concept of time, but recognizes when the bedtime routine has started, and he sort of just rolls along with it. what can i say, he’s a creature of habit.

    Krista´s last blog post…Montreal-bound

  22. I’m about 75% through the Parenting With Love and Logic book. It’s an excellent source and takes some practice, but I have seen it work beautifully with my willfull children. I have run into a few hurdles with my 2 year old while using this method. It seems 2 year olds just don’t have logic, so to try to reason with them is useless. I more often then not find myself making the choice and moving on because it’s as though she’s overcome with the ability to choose and often wants a totally different choice (like to wear a bathing suit instead of a dress or pants).

    Liz´s last blog post…Sweater Flunkie

  23. WOW. I finally feel like I’m doing something right. have been parenting like this for 3 years now- and I’m glad to know that it A)works for others and B) that there is a book supporting this method. I am all about choices, when she can make them! :) thanks!!!

    Kalyn´s last blog post…I {heart} My Husband

  24. I just wanted to stop in and say congratulations for being one of the Internet Cafe’s Top 100 Christian Women’s Blogs of 2008! Your blog truly does bless!

    Laurie Ann´s last blog post…

  25. I do this with my students all the time…I should probably do it with my own little man more often.

    Gina´s last blog post…Ew…that’s funky.

  26. Thanks for the review. I have been looking for something like this book!

  27. It is a great book, I have three kids from 20 down to 8 and the techniques worked for all of them. There are even books by the same name for parents of teens! No matter what their age or stage in life, giving my kids the responsibility of choice in their lives really helped keep the peace in our home and helped them grow into responsible young adults (two of them, so far!). We were sticklers on things that mattered long term (life or death things, eating healthy food, or moral issues or whatever) but other than that, my kids were free to make daily choices. When they would go out of the house on a cold day without a coat and later complained about being cold, I’d say, “Oh! It is cold out, isn’t it!” and that would be the end of it. Next time, they wore a coat!

  28. This is great!

    I use filtered choices ALL the time. It works, every single time. Like you mentioned, I do have to be creative sometimes and invent some choices :)

    In a lot of ways, I enjoy watching my kids choose – the process they use for it. My little on will talk about the choice she is making and why – it is adorable to hear her reasoning !

    Maya´s last blog post…The One Hundred: A Guide to Pieces Every Happy and Balanced Soul Must Embrace: Simplicity

  29. It’s always a great idea to give them choices. Thanks for the reminder.

    Lazy Mom Leslie´s last blog post…What am I Going to Cook for Dinner?

  30. Such good advice, particularly with strong-willed children. I also apply this when it comes to discipline. “You can either obey me or here are the consequences. You choose.”

  31. I was “trained” in Love and Logic as a way one approach to classroom management when I was teaching. I don’t think I realized how completely I had assimilated the principles of their philosophy until I read this post. This is pretty much how I parent instinctively. Lots and lots of choices about small things . . . it’s second nature for me now. As my youngest moves fully in to toddlerhood, I find I’m naturally offering her the chance to choose things now, too.

    Megan@SortaCrunchy´s last blog post…It’s a small favor that we ask

  32. I was so happy to see you mention Love and Logic. We have used their parenting magic with our 4 1/2 and almost 3 year old since birth. I was lucky to have been introduced to Jim Fay and Love and Logic years before our daughters were born.
    There is so much more to Love and Logic than just choices on clothes and when they want to leave the park. The main principles of Love and Logic: Build the self-concept/ Share the control or decision-making/ Offer empathy, then consequences/ Share the thinking and problem-solving.
    This bit is from the Magic for Early Childhood book, on the first principle; building the self-concept.
    Formula for Low Self Concept
    Parents who: Find faults and criticize. Insist on doing everything for their children. Don’t allow their children to experience the joy of independent success.
    Formula for High Self-Concept
    Parents who: Offer empathy, understanding and unconditional love. Allow their children to struggle and solve their own problems. Encourage children to learn to succeed through personal thinking and learning.
    Our daughters are learning that they’ve “got what it takes.” What a great gift for them to have. When they make sad choices and an appropriate consequence follows. The choice they made is what they think about instead of how mean Mom and Dad are. Well, most of the time that is. Sometimes they try to do the “mean Mom” thing, they are kids after all. But with the tools I’ve learned, I use empathy and questions and put the responsibily back on them.
    I absolutely LOVE the Love and Logic principles. Using this style of parenting has made the journey fun and pretty easy too.
    For those of you with little ones, check out Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood- Practical Parenting from Birth to Six Years. For the parents of teenagers, there is a Love and Logic book for raising teenagers. I haven’t read it yet. If it is like the others in the series I’m sure it is well worth your time.
    My mom was impressed with the techniques we were using with the girls and decided to go to a workshop where Jim Fay was speaking. She purchased the Love and Logic for Grandparents. That book is a wellspring of information for the grandparents. Not only does it give techniques for what to do for the young ones. It also has sections for them on what choices to give us, their adult children.
    If Jim Fay or any of the Love and Logic workshops come to your town, go listen to what they have to share. It will change your life. If more of us raised our children with the Love and Logic principles, then our world would be a better place.
    Love and Logic has been a gift for us. I thank the person who introduced me to this everytime I see her.
    Thank you for your time:)

    • Thanks for sharing your Love and Logic experience. You’re right; there’s a lot more to L&L than what I shared – I just wanted to dispense an idea from one little thing I’ve learned from them. :)

  33. Yes! I LOVE this book and have found it so helpful. It was recommended to me about 4 months ago and I was so excited to have it and see it work for us. Glad to see you posted about it!

  34. We’ve used Love and Logic with all three of our children from very early on, and it has worked wonders! In fact, when we begin to falter and lapse out of offering choices I see their behavior really disintegrate.

    When we started I made myself a cheat sheet with a bunch of standard responses. My personal favorite is “You decide.” as in “Do you want to wear your coat or bring it along? You decide.” I love the feeling of empowerment and respect that it gives the kids. Thanks so much for sharing it with your readers :)

    Best,
    Amanda @ http://www.kiddio.org & http://www.housemade.org

    Amanda @ http://www.kiddio.org´s last blog post…February is No-Spend Month

  35. Great advice for young kids! And it does work to some extent with teenagers. I discussed this with a therapist I saw with my teenage son.

    When there is an option to do a chore now or later – cut the grass for example – I give him a choice. You can cut it now, or tomorrow morning. He knows if he waits til tomorrow he won’t go anywhere until its done, so he decides accordingly. As long as the grass gets cut it doesn’t matter to me.

    If there’s a reason why it needs to be done NOW (company coming for a cookout) then I’m comfortable saying this time you have to do it today.

    This also works with privileges. My 17 yo would spend every Friday & Saturday night out if I let him. The rule is one night out and one at home – his choice. It works pretty well.

    With money, it’s I have $XX for you to spend on clothes or shoes, pick what you want. He’ll definitely go for bargains to make his money go further if he can find them.

  36. I thought I would stop by and say I give God the glory for what you’re doing in Christ being recognized on your blog in the Internet Cafe.

    God bless you as you keep your heart close to HIS.

  37. While I’ve never heard of the book I have a 7, 6 and 4 year old and we’ve always implemented the idea. Pick your battles so to speak. It works great and a consequence we sometimes resort to is they lose their “choices” for the day. Man does that one work, especially with my extremely independant 4 year old!

    Mirinda´s last blog post…at a loss.

  38. My children are 7 and 11 and I *still* use this parenting strategy. I learned a long time ago to do two things: 1) pick your battles. If it doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter and 2) let your children have – as you put it so beautifully – filtered control. It’s important to a child’s self confidence, I believe.

    Iva´s last blog post…Mid-Week Reality Check

  39. I am an educator, and our teachers have gone through Love & Logic training. There are local parent classes in L & L, too. The concept of “natural consequences” is great. I know one parent who had a hard time getting his 7-year old son to dress for school on time each day. After L & L, the father told his son what time they would leave and said that ready or not, they would leave on time. The son didn’t believe him until he was loaded in the car in his pajamas. He quickly dressed in the car. The last time I talked with this parent, he said his son was having no problem getting ready for school on time now.

  40. I agree with this. I have a 7yr old boy and find that it’s easier to give him choices. We don’t argue as much as we would if I didn’t . And I feel it does help him to feel more independent. .

    Lynette´s last blog post…Cracker Pizza

  41. This is so true! What is it about human nature that we like to make our own decisions, rather than be told what to do? :) Yes, a healthy part of development for children, but also wonderful when we mature and realize we can give up our choice to defer to and bless others.
    Thanks for the tip on the book. I’ll have to check it out.

    Shilo´s last blog post…Jack Frost’s Handiwork

  42. I love it that I can read your posts, get something out of it, and apply it right away. It’s just so hard for me to sit down and read a book these days! But it does seem like that’s a book worth reading! I’m adding it to my Amazon wish list. :)

    MommyAmy´s last blog post…Introducing Mystery Spice Monday!

  43. You are not in fact relinquishing control of a single thing. You decide that you want to leave the park in 10 minutes, so you offer a pretend choice to children you assume are too dumb to know the difference between a real choice and a pretend choice.

    • Well, the choice really is to leave the park in 10 minutes or right away. It’s an actual choice – just a choice within limits. Sure, I may know what my child may already prefer, but it’s a morally-neutral way my little one can practice making decisions.

      I’m letting her control the situation by choosing within finite choices. I suppose I could just tell her we are leaving in 10 minutes, and the situation would be the same. But I like giving her the opportunity to understand that we must make many choices all day long.

  44. On the days we are not going anywhere I am easily complying with this LOL. And I think I do that once a while, but if I really keep it in mind and actually use it then this way could be way more effectively. Thanks for the reminder.

    nicole´s last blog post…Zoom, zoom, zoom

  45. I do this all the time! I guess my mom just modeled it because I never really even thought about it. Now I hear my 6 year old daughter saying things to my son like “Henry, make a good choice!” I love it!

    Heather´s last blog post…Trepidity, only NOT with all that negative connotation

  46. I read this book when I had a teenage, elementary school kid and a baby. It was great and I was able to use it on all three in different ways. One of the kids it doesn’t work so well on – she’s quite sure if there are 2 choices then there must be three, etc. She is quite sure we are capable of giving her a choice that is acceptable to her…even if it wasn’t offered! LOL! This is a good thing and a bad thing (adoption issues). Great book!

    Autumnesf´s last blog post…Autumn Asks: Are You a Frugal SNOB?!?!

  47. I heard about you from Emily at Chatting at the Sky, and I’m so glad I came to visit. I don’t have kids yet, but my sister and her husband do this with her kids all the time, and IT WORKS. I love it. Thanks for the scenarios; they really help people understand, especially if it’s early in the morning and brain cells aren’t firing terribly fast yet. Can’t wait to come back!

    My First Kitchen´s last blog post…The Easiest Roast Chicken

  48. I borrowed this love and logic book from the library about a year ago. The book was great and it make total sense. Sometimes as parents we tend to make all the little decisions leaving none for our children to be proud of and often causing lots of unneeded power struggles. I was thinking recently that I needed to take this book from the library again for a refresher. I fall into the same old patterns after a little while – thanks for the pick me up!

    Kristen´s last blog post…soft flex’s secret is out!

  49. I LOVE love & Logic!!! I got one book as a present for mother’s day last year and it has helped us a lot and I do believe in this!! We have tried it with my 2 year old and it has worked!!! We hope to keep doing it as he grows!!

    Dariela´s last blog post…Una entrevista como Mamá / A "Mom" Interview

  50. Thank you so much for this post! I saw “Parenting with Love and Logic” at the library the other day and wondered if it was worth my time. Looks like I’ll be checking it out next time!

  51. I started doing this with my son a while back, and like you said it sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t. But I feel that it definitely has gotten us on the road fast in the a.m. and into bed quicker in the p.m.

    Lori´s last blog post…Dumpster Diving – Don’t be above it to get things for free

  52. I also agree. The limited choices works well for me and my munchkins. I personally hate making decisions and I hope that they will be more comfortable with them. Maybe starting young will help them.

  53. Thanks for this useful post, it came just in time. My son is 16 months and I think I can start using filtered choices with him. The wonderful commentors here also convinced me that it is a technique that works for older ages, so it will serve me for a long time, which is great!

    Emma of Baby-Log.com´s last blog post…How I quit smoking for my baby’s sake, part 1

  54. I use Love and Logic with my two girls, now 9 and 7. It worked wonderfully for my 9 year old; not so great for the younger one. When she was 4, her emotions and meltdowns were so intense, we took a “Consious Discipline” (Becky Bailey) class, basically so we could help her get out of the “fight or flight” part of her brain and back to the thinking part, the frontal lobe. We used breathing exercises, a safe place, etc. I’ve tried Love and Logic with my 2 -year-old recently, and he hasn’t understood; I do let him choose his own clothes, pick 3 books a night, etc. Maybe in a few months I can add the “either” “or” part.

    I guess I just want to say if you’re a parent who Love and Logic is not working for you, your child may need a different approach…they’re all unique!

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