I think Parenting is by far the toughest role I have ever accepted and honestly, the level of difficulty is totally dependent on you the parent. I often feel that as parents we try to accomplish way too much and that’s what adds a layer of difficulty to our roles. We, of course, tend to complicate our lives each time. We want to work, be fit, cook, clean, have a social life, be hands on parents, teach, be a school mom, travel, be active on digital media, read, watch movies TV and relax. All of this is this is accompanied by little children who want nothing but us. By little I mean any age because they will always remain little for the parents.
Each time I meet parents whose kids are at a similar age as mine we often discuss tantrums, getting them to listen, gratitude, being stubborn and how each one of us are working on achieving these without losing ourÂ sanity. We all discuss what is working for us and how each one of us are trying something new each day.
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A couple of months ago I almost felt like nothing was up to my expectations and I was driving everybody crazy with a number of goals I had set out for myself. Just the pressure of delivering everything was too overwhelming for me. I always tell this to people including myself,” we get angry on others because we often tend to hide our inefficiencies by shouting at someone else.”
That’s what we do with our kids too. They are bound to make a mess, of course discipline is important and I am all for it but if they were born perfect maybe they didn’t need parents. 2014 was a year of learning for me.
I was also lucky to have read guest blogger, mom and child psychologist Priyanka Bakhru’s articles on being a better parent and to stop using love as a carrot to discipline my kids. It worked. It made me feel better. Parenting according to me is like the Indian stock market it can never be all a straight line. There are good days, budget days, good news and development days and of course the days where one stock performed better than the rest.
Life is a whole lot better once I tried to work on my inefficiencies instead of blaming it on my kids all the time. I started enjoying the milk spills, splashes of paint and learning to say no when I couldn’t do something.
But there is always scope for improvement and when you stumble upon something that’s fun,Â simple, hopefully effective and worth giving it a shot then why not – How to discipline your kids using the Rubber Band Method.Â Â
Unlike the author I didn’t Â try it only on myself alone but also with my older one so she can start appreciating the effort parents take and be thankful for what she has.
Here is what you need to do:
- Put 3Â simple rubber bands as a reminder to praise your child throughout the day. Start each morning with three rubber bands on your right wrist.
- Every time you praise your child, you move a rubber band over to yourÂ leftÂ wrist, with the goal of ending the day with all three moved to the opposite arm. Yes it’s that easy.
- You could alternatively use post it notes too. Ask your child to do the same exercise too. She needs to change the rubber bands when she appreciates you.
What you will start noticing is how you see things more positively than otherwise.
Parenting is not a one way street. As kids grow older we start having expectations from them too like in any relationship and I do believe that appreciation from them makes you feel good and especially on those days when you fell you can’t do it anymore.
With this little exercise both me and my daughter look forward to the end of day when we get into our beds before reading and discuss the whole exercise and what we actually felt through the day. I don’t plan to do it forever but I plan to do it as long as I get the hang of it and it becomes a part of me.
It’s like the L board on your car you don’t have it on all the while.
Those little rubber bands also act like little reminders that help you when you are about to lose your cool. It almost becomes your goal and trust me we perform way better when we have targets and reminders. No relationship is perfect and needs to be nurtured and worked upon each time. So treat this exercise is your little nurturing exercise.
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