A family is a group of power-full people…

Ron’s Reading: Keep Your Love On: Connection Communication And Boundaries

One of the most common aggravations experienced by parents is the “power struggle”. It usually happens when the parent has to get to work or needs to finish dinner or help the child with their homework. Right in the middle of this urgent time, the child decides to exercise their will and demand a treat or refuse to put on their shoes or wants to argue about some topic they really don’t know anything about. Regardless of the circumstances, the outcome is two yelling, arguing, snorting, bug-eyed people who just want the other person to do what they want them to do. No fun for anyone!

Why does this happen so often in families? Danny Silk is one of my favorite authors and I recommend his books to many of the parents I work within family therapy or parenting workshops. In his book: “Keeping Your Love On: Connections, Communication & Boundaries” he shares how a family is a group of powerful people who are trying to learn how to live in powerful ways. He writes: “If you heard someone described as a powerful person, you might assume he or she would be the loudest person in the room, the one telling everyone else what to do. But powerful does not mean dominating. In fact, a controlling, dominating person is the very opposite of a powerful person. Powerful people do not try to control other people. They know it doesn’t work, and it’s not their job. Their job is to control themselves.”

The trick, for parents, is not to demand respect but to create a respectful environment where non-respect, talking back and control simply can’t exist. There just isn’t enough oxygen for those negative elements to survive. Learning how to be a powerful and responsible person is one of the most important tasks of parenting.

You can get more information (and read along with me) on Danny’s book here: Keep Your Love On: Connection Communication And Boundaries

 

How to Have a SAFER Home!

Fear destroys families and why you must make it “feel” safer

By Ron Huxley, LMFT

Fear is one of the biggest reasons for family power struggles and defiance in children. It shifts the atmosphere of the home and causes use to react instead of acting in a safe and sane manner toward one another. All families fight. You can create a S.A.F.E.R. H.O.M.E. to battle against problems instead of people you love.

Are you in a constant power struggle with your children? Feeling a little helpless to manage the continual arguments and competition between children in your home? Tired of yelling, bribing, and negotiating to get cooperation? Well here is a 9 step plan to help you create a “safer home”:

S = Stop what you are doing. Your probably reacting to the stress of the situation and making things worse. Take some time to…

A = Assess the situation, environment, mood and motivations of your child(ren). What are they doing? Why are they doing it? How are you handling it? Who is involved? Just notice for now…

F =Focus on one problem or priority to address. Don’t try to tackle all the issues. Try and address the core issue that affects the most people/variables. This will allow you to…

E = Empathize with your child’s feelings. State: “I can understand how you would feel this way or want to act in a certain way, however…”

R = Respond (versus reacting) by offering alternative solutions or asking for responses from the children to come up with the alternatives themselves. This activates all areas of the brain through empathy development (right brain and emotional centers of the brain) and logical thought (left brain and cause and effect areas of the brain)…

H = Help children with suggestions for things they could try if they cannot come up with their own or if they won’t do it. “Would you like some ideas? What if we do x or y?”…

O = Offer choices. Would you rather share the toy or find a new one? Brush teeth before or after putting on your pajamas? The more choices and the smaller they are spread out through the day the more compliance you will get. Choices mean power but only offer ones you can live with and be ready to…

M = Maintain your position when they go for that third choice you didn’t offer them. If they do this, you know you are playing a game that no one will win. You may have to be a broken record and repeat the choice two choices two times (this is important to only do it twice) and then…

E = Execute the choice everyone agreed to or take action if they can’t or won’t agree to one. You chose A or B. This is “do or die” when it comes to parenting. Be ready to stick to your choice and don’t back down. If you do, you give total control back to your child. The fight might be tough today but tomorrow it will be easier and easier the day after that until finally it will be a rare day that you have to fight it at all. Won’t that be nice and safe?

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Battle of Wills or Battle of Beliefs?

Many parents get into power struggles with their children over everyday tasks like homework, chores, bedtime, eating all their dinner, etc. This battle of wills can become a daily hassle that will wear out the most resilient parent.

In its extreme form, children can develop an oppositional defiant disorder which is characterized by negative, argumentative, disobedient, and hostile behaviors toward parents and authority figures. They refuse any guidance or direction from adults. Relationships turn into competitive matches where every interaction is geared toward the need to win. The subject of the argument no longer matters. The parent and child are armoring themselves to win the battle no matter what the topic. The reality is that parents can’t win every “battle”. That is exhausting! Research indicates that this battle creates even more oppositional behavior in children and the moral of the story ends up being that no one wins!

What Is Really The Problem?

The problem is not the behavior but the beliefs of the contestants in the power struggle. Instead of trying to change behaviors and win the battle of homework or chores, try to change the belief system and win over their heart. That can be difficult for the parent in the middle of a heated argument. It is even more difficult after dealing with defiant children for days, weeks, or months of non-stop fighting.

Parents are not prepared for tools of the heart that change belief structures. Most parenting tools focus on behaviors that attempt to mold children into obedient, submissive people. This is a perfect set up for oppositional defiant behavior to accelerate. Tools of the heart focus on changing oneself first and then work on creating a connection. It doesn’t confront the person. It confronts the beliefs that drive the person to act in opposition and defiant ways.

The Misunderstanding of Power in Relationships.

One of the beliefs that need to be addressed is the idea that in order to be powerful I always have to win. Not only do I have to win but you have to lose so that if you being hurt starts to the sign that I win. The child can get into the habit of hurting people, animals and destroying property to prove they have power. When the parent counters attack or overpowers the child in any way they reinforce this dysfunctional idea. The more realistic belief is that we can both be powerful by making appropriate choices and managing ourselves. Self-control is the ultimate example of power. The parent must model this in the home. The only thing you can guarantee complete control over is when “I manage me.” I cannot manage you 100% of the time. When I try to manage you, I set up a revenge mentality in our relationship. You will do what I want in this battle but you will look for ways to win the next battle.

Focus on Feedback.

Instead of an argument, we want to focus on feedback. Replace “you messages”, as in “you always” or “you never” or even “you are” with “me messages”, such as “here’s how this situation is affecting me”. Don’t hold up a mirror to child’s face to inform them of how “ugly” they are acting. Hold up the mirror to your heart and share what you are feeling. This can be a risky act, on the part of the parent, but vulnerability is what leads to intimacy and without an exposed heart there can be no heart to heart connection.

Questions are useful tools for parents even if you already know the answer. A dominating parent tells the child what to do or what they are not doing right. A parent who values responsibility provides lots of opportunities for the child to make choices. The parent allows the child to voice their needs with questions such as “what do you need in this situation?” or “what are you going to do about this problem?” Don’t be quick to jump in and solve the problem with the child. Let them tangle at bit at the end. You want their brains engaged and trained in solving their own problems.

Using questions help the parent and the child stay focused on the person, in the problem, instead of focusing on the problem in the person. This is an important distinction. Keep asking how your child is going to clean up the mess. You aren’t saying they are a mess but there is this mess of school grades or unclean rooms. If they don’t know to clean up their mess because they are used to the parent always tell them how to clean it up or clean it up for them, start giving them some ideas they can try. If they act like they don’t care about cleaning up the mess, give them choices that might be completely undesirable. “One choice might be to do all of your brother’s chores for a week to pay them back for breaking their toy. Would that be a way you can clean up this mess?” Of course, they don’t want to do that! The point is to get them engaged in this conversation to find a solution they would prefer. If they still refuse any responsibility for their actions, stay calm and wait this out. At some point, the child will want something from the parent and at that moment the parent can return to the mess that is still needing to be cleaned up. Re-ask the question of how they would like to clean up the mess. This teaches self-responsibility without ever breaking a connection with the child. You continually express your belief that they are powerful people who can make a good choice, if not today, then tomorrow or the day after that or the day after that until they finally learn to manage themselves well.

Do You Value Being Right Over Relationship?

If a parent insists on lecturing and using their authority in dominating ways then they are communicating that being right is more important that relationship. Relationships take time and this mess that the child has made can take as long as it needs to get cleaned up but it will get cleaned up. The value of learning responsibility and how to handle freedom and make good choices is more important than being right on this issue we are at odds with each other. Stubbornness is the hallmark of oppositional defiant behavior. Use this same energy to regulate your reaction to stand firm.

There are a lot of false beliefs in the parenting community that parenting educators perpetuate. We have put you in a difficult position and given you a difficult requirement that can set you up for failure. As a parenting educator, I apologize! Let’s learn together on how to build powerful people in intimate relationships with one another.

Ron’s Reading: Keep Your Love On: Connection Communication And Boundaries


by Danny Silk

One of the most common aggravations experienced by parents is the “power struggle”. It usually happens when the parent has to get to work or needs to finish dinner or help the child with their homework. Right in the middle of this urgent time, the child decides to exercise their will and demand a treat or refuse to put on their shoes or wants to argue about some topic they really don’t know anything about. Regardless of the circumstance, the outcome is two yelling, arguing, snorting, bug-eyed people who just want the other person to do what they want them to do. No fun for anyone!

Why does this happen so often in families? Danny Silk is one of my favorite authors and I recommend his books to many of the parents I work with in family therapy or parenting workshops. In his book: “Keeping Your Love On: Connections, Communication & Boundaries” he shares how a family is a group of powerful people who are trying to learn how to live in powerful ways. He writes: “If you heard someone described as a powerful person, you might assume he or she would be the loudest person in the room, the one telling everyone else what to do. But powerful does not mean dominating. In fact, a controlling, dominating person is the very opposite of a powerful person. Powerful people do not try to control other people. They know it doesn’t work, and it’s not their job. Their job is to control themselves.” 

The trick, for parents, is not to demand respect but to create a respectful environment where non-respect, talking back and control simple can’t exist. Their just isn’t enough oxygen for those negative elements to survive. Learning how to be a powerful and responsible person is one of the most important tasks of parenting. 

You can get more information (and read along with me) on Danny’s book here: Keep Your Love On: Connection Communication And Boundaries


(affiliate link). 

What else is Ron reading? Click here to see…

Avoiding the Parent/Teen Torture Chamber

By Ron Huxley, LMFT

Sweat streamed done his face as the heat from the lights glared on his face. His head swayed heavily forward, weary from the uninterrupted hours of questioning. The voices shot from the either side of him, out of the darkness: “Where were you till two in the morning? Why is there mud on the care tires? Whose sweater is in the back-seat? Why are your pupils dilated like that? Is that cigarette smoke I smell? Why didn’t you call?”

This could be a scene from a movie about an enemy spy being interrogated for unknown crimes. Or it could be a fictional account of innocent child tortured at the hands of sadistic tormentors. Instead, it is a dramatization of two parents questioning their teenager for coming home past curfew. At least, this is how a teenager might describe the experience. Teens often feel parents overreact or assume the worst case scenario. They don’t feel parents understand what it is like to be a teenager today. And, they feel that parents don’t give them enough freedom. No matter what a teen does, he or she winds up violating some new rule, like hidden trip wire strung about the house, waiting for an innocent victim. And the rules! Barbaric remnants from there parents generation as children, totally unrealistic for a teenager today.

Parents don’t want to torture their children. They describe their feelings of fear and horror when they don’t know where their child is late at night or early in the morning as the case might be. They know all too well the world a teenager must live in. That is what scares them, motivating their “barbaric rules.” They fear their teenager hides their behaviors and friends from them. They worry that they will be influenced by peers and fall snare to various social evils. They question their child’s ability to make good judgments and take care of themselves in a crisis situation.

So where is the middle ground? How can teenagers feel as if they are getting the freedom they need and still keep mom and dad secure? How can parents learn to trust teens, so if possible, they can meet the teenager half way? Here are some tools that may help teens and their parents avoid the torture chamber:

Things Teens Can Do:

Give parents information. They have a legal responsibility for their child’s safety and behavior, so they have a right to know a child’s whereabouts and activities. Teens who accept and acknowledge this fact can move a great distance along the road to independence. They also want to feel a part of your life, so share with them what is going on in it. They had you because they wanted a family. You need a family for survival (for a while yet, at least) and a sense of personal identity.

Take their perspective- in other words, do a Role Reversal. Take a look at the situation as if YOU were a parent- a person responsible for their child’s safety and well being. See YOURSELF from your parent’s perspective. Do YOU see someone who is responsible and trustworthy? What limits would you set for you if YOU were your parent? Next, look at the world the way a parent looks at the world. Good kids get hurt in this world too! Now, tell yourself the truth. Then, you will be ready to:

Negotiate. Accept compromise as being a reasonable tool for establishing mutually agreeable boundaries and limits. If you are unyielding with your information (tip #1), and unable to accept the fact that parents have to be responsible about their children (tip #2), you are doomed to trouble with the folks. Yielding in areas where maybe they have reasons to set limits and boundaries (areas where your choices have not been the wisest), will give you the opportunity to earn their trust. In time, those areas can get larger as you show you’ve learned to be responsible for yourself and earn the privilege of freedom.

Things parents can do.

Give teens information. Their minds are able to process intelligent reasoning, and understanding why you make the choices you do will open them to adult perspectives and responsibilities. They also need to feel a part of your life. If they have a sense of belonging at home, they’ll
be less likely to seek acceptance with an inappropriate peer group.

Take your child’s perspective. You can do this Role Reversal more easily than your child can, because after all, you’ve been there! Look at yourself through your child’s eyes. Are you reasonable with boundaries and limits? Are you intrusive or disrespectful of, your child’s growing needs for personal privacy, independence and freedom? Do you give your teen opportunities to be responsible, to demonstrate trustworthiness? Do you give them the supports they need to learn and make mistakes? Do you remember what it felt like to be that age? After being honest with yourself, you then are ready to:

Negotiate. Ask your teen what they feel are reasonable limits and boundaries. State what yours are. Then reach compromise. Be willing to “back-off” some in areas where your teen needs to grow. Be specific in what is expected behaviorally, and with what consequences for poor choices will be. Help each other clearly understand the expectations you each hold for the other and the reasons for them. Finally, be willing to follow through with consequences when necessary, both with the lowering or raising of those limits and boundaries in accordance with your teen’s choices.

Ron Huxley is a child and family therapist and the author of the book “Love & Limits: Achieving a Balance in Parenting.” You can order his book online or request it through your local bookstore. The ISBN number is 1-56593-936-0.

Parenting Without Tears, Fears or “Rears”

by Ron Huxley, LMFT

Do you know Rudolph Driekurs? If you have ever taken a parenting class or read a parenting book you might. He was a child psychiatrist and parenting educator that wrote several books on how to change challenging behavior problems. What was unique about Dr. Driekurs is that he did it without punishment or rewards! He believed that behavior is driven by the need for social connection and feeling inadequate or not “fitting in” is what fueled a child’s misbehaviors. He concentrated on what he described as the 4 goals of misbehavior. 

Here is a list of some of Rudolph Driekurs most important parenting tools and ideas: 

Mutual respect based on the assumption of equality, is the inalienable right of all human beings. Parents who show respect for the child–while winning his respect for them–teach the child to respect himself and others. Equality in this sense is treating each person with respect and integrity, no matter what their age. This also leaves room for parents to be in charge and to set some non-negotiable rules and limits, but to do so in a respectful manner.

Encouragement implies faith in and respect for the child as he is. A child misbehaves usually when he is discouraged and believes he cannot succeed by useful means. 

Feelings of “security” are highly subjective and not necessarily related to the actual situation. Real security cannot be found from the outside; it is only possible to achieve it through the experience and feeling of having overcome difficulties. 

Punishment is outdated. A child soon considers that punishment gives him the right to punish in turn, and the retaliation of children is usually more effective than the punishment inflicted by the parents. Children often retaliate by not eating, fighting, neglecting schoolwork, or otherwise misbehaving in ways that are the most disturbing to parents. 

Natural and logical consequences are techniques, which allow the child to experience the actual result of his own behavior. 

  • Natural consequences are the direct result of the child’s behavior. 
  • Logical consequences are established by the parents, and are a direct and logical–not arbitrarily imposed – consequence of the transgression. 
  • Natural consequences are usually effective. However, when they are not effective or consequences are too far in the future, use logical consequences. 
  • Logical consequences can only be applied if there is no power contest; otherwise they degenerate into punitive retaliation. 

Acting instead of talking is more effective in conflict situations. Talking provides an opportunity for arguments in which the child can defeat the parent. If the parent maintains a calm, patient attitude, he can, through quiet action, accomplish positive results. 

Withdrawal as an effective counteraction: Withdrawal or planned ignoring (leaving the child and walking into another room) is most effective when the child demands undue attention or tries to involve you in a power contest. Often doing nothing effects wonderful results. 

Withdrawal from the provocation but not from the child. Don’t talk in moments of conflict. Give attention and recognition when children behave well, but not when they demand it with disturbing behavior. The less attention the child gets when he disturbs, the more he needs when he is cooperative. You may feel that anger helps get rid of your own tensions, but it does not teach the child what you think he should learn. Keep your emotions out of the situation.

Don’t interfere in children’s arguments. By allowing children to resolve their own conflicts they learn to get along better. Many arguments are provoked to get the parent involved, and by separating the children or acting as judge we fall for their provocation, thereby stimulating them to fight more. However, if children are hurting each other, your intervention is necessary.

Fighting requires cooperation. We tend to consider cooperation as inherent in a positive relationship only. When children fight they are also cooperating in a mutual endeavor. Often the younger, weaker child provokes a fight so the parents will act against the older child. When two children fight, they are both participating and are equally responsible. 

Take time for training and teaching the child essential skills and habits. Don’t attempt to train a child in a moment of conflict or in company. The parent who “does not have time” for such training will have to spend more time correcting an untrained child. 

Never do for a child what he can do for himself. A dependent child is a demanding child. Children become irresponsible only when we fail to give them opportunities to take on responsibility. 

Overprotection pushes a child down. Parents may feel they are giving when they act for a child; actually they are taking away the child’s right to learn and develop. Parents have an unrecognized prejudice against children; they assume children are incapable of acting responsibly. When parents begin to have faith that their children can behave in a responsible way, while allowing them to do so, the children will assume their own responsibilities. 

Over-responsible parents often produce irresponsible children. Parents who take on the responsibility of the child by reminding or doing for him, encourage the child to be irresponsible. Parents must learn to “mind their own business” and let the child learn from the logical consequences of his own behavior. 

Distinguish between positive and negative attention if you want to influence children’s behavior. Feeling unable to gain positive attention, and regarding indifference as intolerable, children resort to activities, which get them negative attention. Negative attention is the evidence that they have succeeded in accomplishing their goal. 

Understand the child’s goal. Every action of a child has a purpose. His basic aim is to have significance and his place in the group. A well-adjusted child has found his way toward social acceptance by cooperating with the requirements of the group and by making his own useful contribution to it. The misbehaving child is still trying, in a mistaken way, to feel important in his own world. For examples a young child who has never been allowed to dress himself (because “the parent is in a hurry”), who has not been allowed to help in the house (“you’re not big enough to set the table”), may lack the feeling that he is a useful, contributing member of the family, and might feel important only when arousing a parent’s anger and annoyance with misbehavior. 

The four goals of misbehavior. The child is usually unaware of his goals. His behavior, though illogical to others, is consistent with his own interpretation of his place in the family group. 

  • Attention-getting: he wants attention and service. We respond by feeling annoyed and that we need to remind and coax him. 
  • Power: he wants to be the boss. We respond by feeling provoked and get into a power contest with him–“you can’t get away with this!" 
  • Revenge: he wants to hurt us. We respond by feeling deeply hurt–"I’ll get even!" 
  • Display of inadequacy: he wants to be left alone, with no demands made upon him. We respond by feeling despair–"I don’t know what to do!" 
  • If your first impulse is to react in one of these four ways, you can be fairly sure you have discovered the goal of the child’s misbehavior. 

A child who wants to be powerful generally has a parent who also seeks power. One person cannot fight alone; when a parent learns to do nothing (by withdrawing, for example) during a power contest, the parent dissipates the child’s power and can begin to establish a healthier relationship with him. The use of power teaches children only that strong people get what they want. 

No habit is maintained if it loses its purpose, its benefits. Children tend to develop "bad” habits when they derive the benefit of negative attention. If crying or tantrums gets children what they want, they will continue to use those “bad” habits. If they don’t work, they quit using them.

Minimize mistakes. Making mistakes is human. We must have the courage to be imperfect. The child is also imperfect. Don’t make too much fuss and don’t worry about his mistakes. Build on the positive, not on the negative. 

A family meeting gives every member of the family a chance to express himself freely in all matters of both difficulty and pleasure pertaining to the family. The emphasis should be on “What we can do about the situation.” Meet regularly at the same time each week. Rotate the leader. Keep minutes. Have an equal vote for each member. Only bring those concerns to the family meeting, which are negotiable. Require a consensus, rather than a majority vote on each decision. Some family rules are non-negotiable. Perhaps explanations or reinforcement of a rule would be appropriate.

Have fun together and thereby help to develop a relationship based on enjoyment, mutual respect, love and affection, mutual confidence and trust, and a feeling of belonging. Instead of talking to nag, scold, preach, and correct, utilize talking to maintain a friendly relationship. Speak to your child with the same respect and consideration that you would express to a good friend.

S.A.F.E.R. H.O.M.E. : Helping parents deal with power struggles and out-of-control children.

by Ron Huxley, LMFT

Are you in a constant power struggle with your children? Feeling a little helpless to manage the continual arguments and competition between children in your home? Tired of yelling, bribing, and negotiating to get cooperation? Well here is a 9 step plan to help you create a “safer home”:

= Stop what you are doing. Your probably reacting to the stress of the situation and making things worse. Take some time to…

= Assess the situation, environment, mood and motivations of your child(ren). What are they doing? Why are they doing it? How are you handling it? Who is involved? Just notice for now…

=Focus on one problem or priority to address. Don’t try to tackle all the issues. Try and address the core issue that affects the most people/variables. This will allow you to…

E = Empathize with your child’s feelings. State: “I can understand how you would feel this way or want to act in a certain way, however…”

= Respond (versus reacting) by offering alternative solutions or asking for responses from the children to come up with the alternatives themselves. This activates all areas of the brain through empathy development (right brain and emotional centers of the brain) and logical thought (left brain and cause and effect areas of the brain)…

= Help children with suggestions for things they could try if they cannot come up with their own or if they won’t do it. “Would you like some ideas? What if we do x or y?”…

= Offer choices. Would you rather share the toy or find a new one? Brush teeth before or after putting on your pajamas? The more choices and the smaller they are spread out through the day the more compliance you will get. Choices mean power but only offer ones you can live with and be ready to…

M = Maintain your position when they go for that third choice you didn’t offer them. If they do this, you know you are playing a game that no one will win. You may have to be a broken record and repeat the choice two choices two times (this is important to only do it twice) and then…

E = Execute the choice everyone agreed to or take action if they can’t or won’t agree to one. You chose A or B. This is “do or die” when it comes to parenting. Be ready to stick to your choice and don’t back down. If you do, you give total control back to your child. The fight might be tough today but tomorrow it will be easier and easier the day after that until finally it will be a rare day that you have to fight it at all. Won’t that be nice and safe?

Need more help with power struggles, arguments and out-of-control home situations? Contact Ron today at rehuxley@gmail.com about parenting coaching or family therapy. 

All parents have experienced the classical power struggle with their child over a toy they want, chore they don’t want, and a long list of things you want them to do. The subject matter doesn’t matter but what does is how you keep your power intact. The word “no” is a powerful tool that most parents misuse. I would suggest using it on a 70/30 split where you say “no” 30 percent of the time. That means you are going to have to find acceptable ways to say “yes” which could be challenging. If you find enough micro-yesses in your day, your child will perceive you more as a loving gift-giver versus the big meany who says “no” all the time. Using this word more judiciously will make it more powerful. 

Parenting One-Liners

My wife and I were recently listening to some parenting workshops on audio and the speaker was talking about parenting one-liners used by the Love and Logic organization.  I forgot how amazingly simple and powerful these one-liners are for parents who want to stay calm and regulated during potential power struggles with their children. 

Some examples of one-liners include:

  • “Probably so.”
  • “I know.”
  • “Nice try.”
  • “I bet it feels that way.”
  • “What do you think you’re going to do.”
  • “I don’t know. What do you think?”
  • “Bummer. How sad.”
  • “Thanks for sharing that.”
  • “Don’t worry about it now.”
  • “That’s an option.”
  • “I bet that’s true.”
  • “Maybe you’ll like what we have for the next meal better.”
  • “What do you think I think about that?”
  • “I’m not sure how to react to that. I’ll have to get back to you on it.”
  • “I’ll let you know what will work for me.”
  • “I’ll love you wherever you live.”

Instead of getting hooked into an argument or fixing a problem for child, use the parenting one-liners to facilitate more independent problem-solving skills by the child. Genuineness, on the part of the parent, is important when using them. 

Get a free pdf here: http://www.loveandlogic.com/documents/one-liners.pdf

Do you have any other one-liners you use that disrupt power struggles? Share them here or on Facebook at http://on.fb.me/1703QiT

Help Children Visualize Their Chores…and get them done!

Chore-allowance system

We all know this: what works for one family doesn’t work for another. Such is the case with motivation systems, star charts, and other ways of tracking and rewarding chores.

Kelly Wickham (Mocha Momma) shared her friend’s gorgeous system that solves three problems at the same time.

  • It reminds kids about their household responsibilities
  • It gives them a way to “check off” tasks as they finish them
  • It makes a perfectly clear connection between the completion of chores and the reward (or earnings, as they should more accurately be called)

Be sure to read Kelly’s post detailing this system and why it’s working – there’s much more to this story.

Read the full post at Mocha Momma: Motivating Children to Do Chores