The Importance of Discipline in a Child
Love always fits in every hour and moment of a child’s or adolescent’s life, and discipline too. There is no standard formula. However, there is something certain; the sooner this discipline happens consciously, the greater the possibility of children being more friendly and responsible adults.
Loving attitudes, clear rules, and applying previously established consequences encourage the development of positive behaviors in children. When parents behave in this way, the child is encouraged to explore his environment while respecting certain limits—interested parents who allow them to convey confidence.
Respecting each child’s personality, parents must discipline it in a way that is neither overly authoritarian nor overly permissive. Children who are very strictly controlled will have a great chance of having difficulty making decisions and expressing their needs. On the other hand, children who are allowed to do everything they want will find it difficult to know what is or is not acceptable. How then do you instill discipline in your child? Below in this article, you will find some helpful tips.
How to make our children more disciplined
Learning to be responsible and disciplined helps us learn little by little to be more autonomous, have more emotional stability, and, therefore, greater maturity.
How can we contribute to the development of our children’s discipline?
Below are some rules on how we can contribute to our children’s development and discipline, helping them be responsible and disciplined, learning to be, little by little, more autonomous, to have more emotional stability and, therefore, more maturity.
1. Rules and limits
The best way to facilitate a child’s discipline is to establish clear rules and boundaries that is noticeable to the child. Rules and limits are fundamental for the child to learn self-control, know what is right and wrong, and facilitate the experience inside and outside the family sphere. Once the rules are known, life becomes easier for parents and children.
2. Clear consequences
Just as the rules for children must be simple and clear, so must the consequences. If there is a punishment for bad behavior – going to bed early, not watching TV, or playing with a certain toy – it is important that this consequence materializes. Only then will children realize that they cannot circumvent the rules or challenge the limits without dealing with the consequences. As much as it may cost you, you have to fulfill the consequences – no one ever said that discipline would be easy, but more important than that is effective. In the long run, it will be worth it.
Teaching your child to respect not only adults, but everyone around them goes through things as simple as learning to say “please” or “thank you.” Not screaming or hitting are other actions that must be controlled to limit aggression in children. Please speak to the child in the same way that you would like them to speak. The child needs to speak and express whatever he feels like, but always with respect for the other.
4. Yes instead of No
A child should always be encouraged with positive and never negative phrases. “I know you are good at this, and you are going to do it very well,” for example.
5. Discover the causes
If bad behavior is a constant and all acts of discipline are being fruitless, it is important to assess the situation and understand why the disobedience: did something happen? Does the child feel unwell? Sleep enough? Bad behavior is not always a child’s whim, so talk to the child after calming down and assessing the situation better and how you can resolve it.
6. Be firm
The secret behind the success of children’s discipline is the ability to remain firm, that is, if the child already knows that he cannot take toys to school, do not give in just because he decided to make a giant tantrum; if bedtime is at 8:30 pm, don’t give in because the child wants to play a little more. The moment you give in, the child will continue to test the limits over and over again.
7. I like you
Being firm does not mean that you cannot tell the child how much you like him or explain why you do not like a certain action or words. It is interesting to show the child that discipline does not mean that you like each other less.
8. The power is yours
There is no going back; the parents are in charge, so use this for your benefit. Children watch and copy everything from the adult world, so if they are always shouting at their children, they will think that there is nothing wrong with that and will certainly mirror the same type of behavior. By taking a deep breath and thinking twice before speaking, you can do it calmly, reminding the child that this is how you speak and behave. It is up to the parents to establish the tone of the children’s situations following this path.
9. Take care
Children are the most wonderful beings globally, but the daily routine and the different stages of their development can prove to be real challenges for any mother or father. Hence the importance of taking care of yourself – find quality time to be alone and with your partner, do activities that allow you to relieve stress – this way, you will be better prepared to face, in a calm and exemplary way, the challenges of child discipline.
10. It would help if you gave them responsibilities according to their age
Assign them tasks that will make them feel responsible and accountable. Collect toys, let them help clear the table, clean the house.
11. Advances and setbacks
Disciplining a child is not something that happens overnight. Although it is easier to understand the rules as they grow up, this does not mean that every once in a while, there is no big tantrum, doors slamming, brothers fighting, or other less positive behaviors. Be prepared for those moments.
12. Start early
Begin to establish discipline from the moment of birth. Lay it down and always feed it at the same time, for example. It is also very important to talk to them a lot since they are born; this gives them a lot of security.
13. Establish good communication with your child
Make the child feel he can count on you, that you love him, that he tells you how well he does this or that. It is also good that you negotiate with your child and establish that he/she cannot do not everything he/she wants but make it clear that they are not under a permanent dictatorship.
14. Explain the why
If you explain that brushing the teeth is so that you don’t have cavities or that putting your seat belt on in your car is to avoid accidents, the child will better understand the situation and understand that life has a reason and that it is not “because I say.”
15. Help them by example
There is no better teaching than an example. Do what you preach, and your speech will be much better received.
Importance of positive discipline
Positive discipline is designed for children to become responsible, respectful, and empathetic, and assertive people in their lives. Teach children positive values and social skills for life to respect themselves and, above all, respect everyone else. Children from birth need to connect with others, feel connected with their community, with the family, and with the school; when they feel this connection, they will not need to misbehave.
With positive discipline, children are taught to think, they are taught to reflect on their behavior, and blind obedience is eliminated forever – which in adult life would only bring problems. Positive discipline teaches children to communicate effectively, think flexibly, and be a good problem solver.
But it is necessary not to confuse positive discipline with letting your child do whatever he wants (this would be permissive parenting, fraught with negative consequences for children). Parents who are too lax or permissive will create insecure children, with little self-control, and who will have serious difficulties in committing to decisions or assuming the consequences of their actions.
The positive discipline involves parenting with love, kindness, and above all, that is respectful of children’s needs and setting limits that are fair and reasonable and agreed consequences and relevant to the particular situation.