Over the past few days I have been blessed with some helpful hints on child-rearing and just felt obliged to share. As a mom of two small kids, I feel like I can use all the help I can get! Our sermon on Sunday was called Parenting 101 and was such a great message. You can watch or listen to it by clicking here: www.lakepointe.org/message. I HIGHLY recommend watching it if you have kids. Watch it with your spouse, if possible. Jared and I should probably watch it at least once a week just to be reminded of everything.
During the message, our pastor recommended two books.
1. The Five Love Languages of Children by Gary Chapman
2. Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp.
I look forward to reading both of them and will be happy to report back when I'm done:)
My next lesson came on Tuesday night at our bimonthly Firewheel Mom's Club meeting. A family/child therapist was our guest speaker and had so many helpful things to share. The topic she chose to cover was "Limit Setting," which is something I deal with quite frequently, as I'm sure most moms do. I get so tired of always threatening or counting to 3 that by the end of the day I am emotionally exhausted. She prefaced all of it by saying that in order for any behavior modification to work, the parent must remain calm but firm. Much easier said than done, but it is possible! I am a work in progress on this, but feel that I am making strides in the right directon. Sometimes they are babysteps, but most of the times they are strides.
She uses the A-C-T Method of Limit Setting.
Here's the low-down on it:
A - Acknowledge your child's feelings
C - Communicate the limit
T - Target the alternatives
Here's an example of how this might work:
A - "I know it feels good to you to be barefoot..."
C - "but you need to wear shoes when we go to the store."
T - "You can wear sandals or shoes. Which do you choose?"
She really emphasized the importance of at least acknowledging your child's feelings first, because it doesn't put them on the defensive. She also really stressed being concise with your ACT so that they understand. The last big point is to use the word "choose" as much as possible, so that they feel empowered. It makes them stop their bad behavior (hopefully!) think about what they want and then make the choice. Just don't give them a choice that you can't live without, like not going to grandma's for the night if you already had family plans to do so.
She also really liked the Gary Chapman book and recommended more as well.
Her favorite ones are:
1. How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
2. Sibling Rivalry by the same peeps
I am going to really try and learn something from these resources and hopefully create a more harmonious homelife. I will say that Jackson has responded wonderfully to the ACT Method...so I know we're headed in the right direction.