Being a consistent parent is key when it comes to raising your children.
While most parents know this and agree, sometimes it’s easier said than done.
It’s easy to get off course when you are trying to complete a task, get somewhere on time or get through yet another temper tantrum.
Any of these can make remaining consistent a challenge.
10 WAYS TO BE A MORE CONSISTENT PARENT
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There are many ways to be a more consistent parent, you just have to make sure that you are staying on track.
Attempting to tackle every discipline challenge you have at once will only overwhelm you and cause you to go off the rails, yet again.
Choose one or two things that you think you really need to focus your attention on and stick with it.
Never give in and never present a reward for negative behaviors.
SET UP CAMP
Change isn’t going to happen overnight.
It takes about three weeks to augment some behaviors.
Take a second to put yourself in your child’s position and consider that they are used to you not always meaning what you say.
Now that you mean business, your children may be confused.
Change can take place, it’s not impossible, but it won’t happen overnight.
Set up camp and stick to your guns.
TIMING IS EVERYTHING
If you have a big event coming up, a new baby due or you are moving to a new place, do not attempt to change at this moment.
Trying out new discipline strategies right before an impending event doesn’t allow for enough structure or stress-free time to practice them.
You will have much more success if you choose a more predictable and stable time to implement new practices.
These notes can have a huge impact on the changes you are attempting to make.
Make sure to put these notes in prominent places that you will see them several times throughout the day.
They will serve as a reminder to stick to your new techniques.
EXPECT A CHALLENGE
No matter how consistent you are, your children might challenge this change.
If they don’t challenge you right away, they will respond well only to revert back to past behaviours.
Do not let this get you down or discourage you.
It is totally normal for your children to challenge you once in a while. They are testing your consistency.
Just stay on track and you will get through it.
DON’T DO IT ALONE
Don’t make these changes on your own.
Ask for help.
Let people know what techniques you are using and enlist your significant other, coaches, grandparents and teachers to help in any way they can.
Tackling this as a team will only give reinforcement to your efforts to stop negative behaviours.
CHOOSE TO MAKE AN EXCEPTION
When you are too busy to enforce a rule and then act in an inconsistent manner, it tells your children that what consistency isn’t important.
This doesn’t mean that you can not intentionally make an exception every once in a while. Just make sure you let your children know in advance that you are going to make that exception.
For instance, saying something like “Since you want to go to the park today, we will skip our chores until the afternoon.”, lets your children know that this inconsistency is planned and can actually help strengthen the rules.
LET THEM HELP
Give your kids a heads up that you will be more consistent from this day forward and allow them to help.
Let them help make signs, talk out the reasons consistency is important and make it very clear that there will be a FAMILY change.
Teach them to mean what they say and say what they mean through experience by allowing them the opportunity to be consistent themselves.
When you are attempting to be more consistent with your children, it is so important that you remain calm with your approach.
Raising your voice or going off the deep end will make you lose all your credibility with you kids.
This will make the situation go downhill much faster than necessary.
When you display a calm demeanour with you children, they pay more attention to what you are saying.
BE CONSISTENT WITH PRAISE
Consistency is not just setting rules and following through, it is also about positive reinforcement.
Your child will feel more compelled to continue the positive behaviours when they feel as though they are being noticed.
Catch your child doing something good and be consistent in your praise, the way you praise and how often.
Consistency is more of a lifestyle change that effects all aspects of your family life than just a parenting method.
Parenting with consistency is very important when it comes to raising happy, well behaved children.
Although making changes like this can seem exhausting, they are well worth it in the end when you see the benefits consistency has to your family.
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