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Training Your Children to Behave

Updated on September 25, 2012
Photo by Greg Sereda
Photo by Greg Sereda

I have a relative with two small boys. Sometimes she is so stressed-out over their misbehavior that she simply does not know what to do. They scream their heads off, they make a mess, they run circles around the house, and they do not listen to a word she says. Do you have similar problems with your kids? If you do, chances are it is because you have no method of disciplining them. In this hub, I am going to give you some tips on disciplining your children which will drastically improve their behavior.

Set some Rules

The first thing that you need to do is to set some rules. Do this when your children misbehave. If they are hitting a sibling, for example, tell them that what they are doing is wrong; but don’t stop there. Give them a visual reinforcement. You can stick a piece of paper on the refrigerator entitled “Rules” and list it there. Also, come up with a consequence associated with their misbehavior. The consequence may be segregation in their bedroom for 15 minutes. Finally, make sure they understand the rule and its consequences.

You do not want to punish them at this point. Their first offense will serve as a warning. The reasoning behind this is because it is not fair to punish them for a rule that they had no prior knowledge about. This will only make them angry at you for being an unfair parent (at least, angrier than they will be when you punish them after they know the rules); and they will become confused about their actions and be uncomfortable around you.

Be Consistent

However, most important of all is that you remain consistent in your method of discipline. I tested my cousin’s son, asking him why he does not listen to his mother. Do you know what his reply was? “Because I know she is not going to punish me.” That blew me away! He is only three years old. My cousin threatens to punish him for his misbehavior all of the time; but she never actually follows through with it.

My cousin’s son has detected her bluff and now he owns her. If she is going to gain his respect, she needs to follow through with disciplining him. She needs to become a disciplined disciplinarian. That will change his attitude quick! I know this to be a fact because his father is a more strict disciplinarian than she is; and when he starts counting, “1, 2, 3, …” after telling their son to start behaving, his son straightens up right away! Their son has learned that Daddy means business when he starts to count.

For added reinforcement, after disciplining your children you could tell them to think about what they did wrong for a few minutes; and then have them apologize for being bad. Next, give them some verbal praise for correcting their misbehavior and hug them or reward them in some small way.

Children can be difficult to handle. They do not come with manuals; so most parents are not aware of how to train them effectively. However, developing methods of discipline, and remaining consistent in those methods, will go a long way in training your children to respect you as a parent and behave.

My cousin’s son has detected her bluff and now he owns her. If she is going to gain his respect, she needs to follow through with disciplining him. She needs to become a disciplined disciplinarian. That will change his attitude quick! I know this to be a fact because his father is a more strict disciplinarian than she is; and when he starts counting, “1, 2, 3, …” after telling their son to start behaving, his son straightens up right away! Their son has learned that Daddy means business when he starts to count.

For added reinforcement, after disciplining your children you could tell them to think about what they did wrong for a few minutes; and then have them apologize for being bad. Next, give them some verbal praise for correcting their misbehavior and hug them or reward them in some small way.

Children can be difficult to handle. They do not come with manuals; so most parents are not aware of how to train them effectively. However, developing methods of discipline, and remaining consistent in those methods, will go a long way in training your children to respect you as a parent and behave.

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    • Greg Sereda profile image
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      Greg Sereda 5 years ago from Sandomierz, Poland

      @kelleyward: Yes. Children require so much attention that it's easy to get distracted from being a consistent disciplinarian.

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      kelleyward 5 years ago

      Consistency is so important and what I find to be the most difficult to consistently perform!!