This summer I decided to change my parenting style and apply the basics of positive reinforcement. This means I focused more on what my kids were doing right, instead of criticizing and pointing out when they misbehaved. I’ve always been a big believer in giving positive attention but this past year it had become harder and harder. We were all tired and stressed out, so we needed a change.
My kids’ summer vacation was the perfect moment to try something different but I never expected how well things would turn out. As I shared on my Babble post a few days ago, my kids even started competing against each other to see who behaved the best. I also shared a few tips to inspire other parents to break the negative cycle of criticizing and not praising when children do behave well.
Never in a million years did I expect that post to catch the attention of producers at Good Morning America, but what I wrote resonated with them. Last week they came to my home to interview mw with my children and the segment aired this morning. Watching my daughter say that my words and the change in my parenting style made her feel better about herself made the effort totally worth it. Because it is not easy to break old patterns. You can watch the segment here.
In case you’re wondering, I still punish my kids when the behave badly. Electronics and screen time are taken away if they call each other names, hit each other or ignore our family’s rules, because positive reinforcement does not mean lacking discipline. However, I make an effort to call out the good, especially in front of others, so my kids know that I do notice when they make an effort. Try it out. Your kids might surprise you, like mine did.