Positive discipline strategies are a must for any household with children and an absolute necessity for the work at home mom. Children are a treasure for sure, but spending too much time with them day in and day out can back fire when you don't have the right tricks of the trade on your side. Working from home is challenging enough without the added stress of unruly children when you have a deadline.
Using a toolbox of positive discipline strategies will allow you to keep your sanity, stay on top of your work load, and introduce boundaries and great role modeling to your children. Here are 3 strategies to promote positive discipline in the household:
Distraction is a positive and easy discipline tool to use, especially with the very young child; think crawler or toddler. It might seem like you are constantly saying no to your child when she reaches the stage of exploration. This can be discouraging and set up a negative environment of power struggles. To keep your home positive and encourage your child's natural stage of curiosity, start using the art of distraction.
Distraction is simply placing your child in a different place or replacing an item that is a "no-no". For instance, if your child is chewing on the remote again, have a distraction ready (a soft rattle or a rubber kitchen spatula, etc.). As you distract your child with the new item, you can explain that the remote is for grown-ups and then help her focus her attention on what she now has. This allows you to refrain from saying no all the time and gives your child room to explore.
2. Natural and Logical Consequences
As your child grows older and you want to keep the positive strategies in place, a natural progression is using natural and logical consequences as a discipline technique. This takes practice and can be difficult to enforce at times, but it also prevents you from becoming the overstressed and angry ogre. It also allows you to teach your kids to be responsible for their own behavior and choices.
An example of a natural consequence is when your tween leaves her favorite shoes on the living room floor and the dog chews them up. An example of a logical consequence is when your child chooses not to do her chores and then doesn't get to go out to play.
3. Rewards Chart
Another positive strategy to use is the rewards chart. This can go hand in hand with logical consequences and provides an outline of expected behavior within the home. As a work at home mom, it's important to involve the whole family in the daily maintenance and upkeep of the home. A rewards chart will give your child clear direction and an opportunity for earning things that are special. Keep in mind that rewards don't have to be items and don't have to be expensive. A great reward might be a half hour of game time with mom or dad.
Whatever positive discipline strategies you decide to use in your home, make sure it's age appropriate for your child. Also, remember that being consistent will increase your chances of success.