Since many pet owners lament scratched-up and dirtied sofas and carpets, manufacturers have developed scratch-resistant furniture. A quick Google search will yield many results, but if you can opt for durable materials. Outdoor furniture tends to be stronger and more durable than its indoor counterpart as it’ll be exposed to elements. In areas with high use (like the living room or your porch), use easily replaceable or removable fabrics instead.
Once they get dirtied up, you can change them for a new one. Regardless of what kind of parenting style you try to raise your children, you will still spend a large amount of your time teaching them discipline, including self-discipline. As a matter of fact, the idea of “disciplining your children” should be thought of as “teach your children self-discipline.”
They need to learn to behave better even without scrutiny or monitoring, to be a good citizen not because someone is looking, but because it’s inherently better to be good. This can only work when you have a good relationship with your children. You can only teach about self-discipline when the emotional connection is there. Otherwise, they will see you as a strict steward.
It’s not about punishment, although it might seem as such to the children (especially when they’re trying to act difficult). It’s about reinforcing positive behavior and discouraging negative ones. Let’s look at how that can be achieved and how you can make the process of disciplining your kids easier for everyone involved.
Show Good Actions and Explain its Importance
First and foremost, children learn best when they’re given an actual example and provided context for it. It’s best to model what good behavior is like to your children; you’re the best example, after all. They’re more likely to follow your teachings when they see you practice them, especially when you verbally explain why such behavior is good.
Have Clear Limitations and Boundaries
Having clear boundaries and consistent limitations will help your children understand what they can and cannot do. It’s critical to explain why these rules must be followed — always provide context. You’re treating them responsibly by doing so. Of course, you have to remember to create age-appropriate rules. The rules for a pre-teen won’t exactly make sense for a rebellious teenager. They will also test the limits of these rules, so extra patience is necessary.
Provide a Safe Environment for Play
Children are inevitably full of energy and will always want to play. Don’t hinder this feeling; instead, provide a safe environment for them to play in. Clean up your yard, have the trees trimmed, make sure your grass bed is soft so that they can run around and play to their heart’s content. This way, they won’t be bursting with energies inside your home and result in a shouting match when they become too volatile to contain. There will be fewer broken things inside your house, and they’ll still have their moments of play.
Listen to Them Without Judgement
Children fear their parents’ judgment more than anything. When we respond to their feelings with reprimands, it often tells them not to tell you what they feel. To avoid this, listen. Do so intently, let them complete their story, and ask whether they want to hear a solution or like to vent.
Asking them probing questions like “why do you think you felt that way?” or “what can we do about your feelings” will also teach them to be responsible for their own emotions. This advice must not be overlooked. Most children grow apart from their parents simply because their parents don’t understand that their kids aren’t always looking for advice, just someone to listen to them.
Validate their Goodness
Only mentioning their bad deeds will implant the thought that they’re inherently wrong. And that’s something no good parent wants. You also need to mention when they do a good deed. Make a note of their positive actions and good behavior, and compliment them on it. Be very specific with how you say it so that they know that it’s the actions that matter. Hopefully, this will encourage positive behavior and deter them from straying from your teachings. Rewarding particularly good actions with something is also a good idea.
Spend Quality Time with Them
Parents often get a bad rap for not spending enough time with their kids. “Spending time” doesn’t just mean being in the same room; it means spending quality time with them. Parents need to create positive emotional bonds with their children, and you can do this by being with them during happy moments. Go to parks with them, play your favorite video games together, or watch movies. It doesn’t matter what you do; as long as the both of you are having fun, it counts as quality time.
New parents, even seasoned ones, usually worry about disciplining their children. The tips provided here, when applied, are a great start to a good relationship. Guidance and love will always be a parent’s legacy to their children.