Every parent makes mistakes when dealing with their children’s misbehavior from time to time. Disciplining kids is one of the essential parts of parenthood. Sp here are some of the 7 mistakes parents make in their approach to discipline.

Children’s actions follow a set pattern. If a child is exhausted, hungry, or irritated, it’s the responsibility of the adult to notice and respond accordingly. Many parents mistake ignoring their children’s warning signs, yet correcting these oversights can have a profound impact on the quality of one’s time as a parent. To help you avoid these typical mistakes, we consulted with experts and asked them to provide their advice on avoiding them.

1. Negative thoughts

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Keep your hands off your sister! What are you doing to the dog? There is no limit when it comes to telling your toddler or pre-schooler not to do something.

Ask for what you wish to see happen. No parent wants to raise a child who doesn’t know the difference between right and wrong, but parents use the word “no” so frequently that the word loses its meaning. As a result, we often advise children not to do something without providing them with an example of what they should be doing instead.

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If something is harmful (imagine a fork in an electrical socket or the spider plant being eaten by your child), don’t be afraid to tell your children how you want them to act. Instead, what if you said something like “No standing in the bathtub!” or “We sit down in the bathtub because it is slippery?” Afterward, compliment them if you see your child happily splashing around while sitting down (“I like how you’re sitting!”).

2. We Place Unreasonable Expectations on Our Children

You’re in a church with your toddler when they start screaming. They do it again as soon as you tell them to quiet down. Mortifying! What’s wrong with them?

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Play the role of a teacher. Impulse control and the social graces required in public areas such as stores and restaurants remain a challenge for youngsters under two. Parents presume youngsters know more than they do.

When your child deviates from the norm, keep in mind that they’re not intentionally being a nuisance; they simply don’t know how to react in the scenario, so snapping isn’t going to help (or fair). To teach your child how you want them to act, you should softly say things like, “I am being quiet since I am in church, but if I need something from Dad, I lean in close and whisper.” Highlight what others are doing (“Look how Charlie is coloring while he waits for his meal to arrive”). Modeling or calling attention to something we want them to do goes a long way with born mimics children.

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For children to become self-reliant, you should prepare to offer your child a lot of reminders—and remove them when they don’t get the message. They’ll become better with practice.

3. Exemplifying Negative Personality Traits

When something falls to the ground, the first thing you do is to scream. When a man cuts you off, you immediately yell at him and call him names. When things don’t go according to plan, you feel irritated if your child does the same.

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Take a second chance and apologize. Children’s behavior might spiral out of control if we yell at them. You can’t be perfect all the time, so apologies if you do something wrong. Emotions are powerful and difficult to manage, especially for adults, but saying “sorry” shows that we take responsibility for our actions. It allows you to talk about the reasons for your reaction, which might help resolve conflicts in the future.

4. Assisting When Your Children Is Simply Angry At You

While your children are playing, you hear them scurrying about the house and immediately yell at them to stop.

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As a solution, you can ignore some things and not others. Parents often urge to intervene whenever their children do something, well, childish. On the other hand, being the villain might get old after a while. Remember that children are constantly learning and developing new skills, so don’t take things too seriously when they do something annoying. Because they’re learning about liquids, your toddler may be dumping juice into their cereal. Some of the time, they’re simply trying to get your attention.

When safety isn’t a concern, you can attempt a wait-and-see approach. Try not to yell at your 6-year-old if they’re playing their recorder with their nose. Go ahead and carry on with your normal routine and see whether it has any effect. In most cases, if you keep your mouth shut, they’ll eventually settle down, and you’ll feel better for it.

5. Being a one-person show

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In this case, I’m genuinely asking you to turn off the television.” For the same reason that you ignore yellow lights when driving, your children will continue to engage in harmful behavior if warnings are left ambiguous.

Setting boundaries and adhering to them is the answer. All of these methods of persuasion imply that cooperation is not required. Parents need to set clear expectations for their kids and take action when they don’t meet them. Start with reasonable commands if you want your child to get up from the couch and finish their schoolwork (“Please turn off the TV now and do your work”). Thank them if they do what they say they’ll do. Otherwise, impose a penalty: “Right now, I will switch off the television. Your TV privileges are suspended until your work is complete.

6. Inefficient use of the “Time-Out” feature

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They begin slamming their skull on the floor in rage after you send them to their room for beating up their younger brother.

The Answer: Set a timer for yourself. A time-out is not meant to be a punishment but rather a chance for a child to calm down and get back to their normal routine. Some children may respond well to the idea that they go to a quiet room until they calm down. Others, on the other hand, interpret it negatively and become enraged. Furthermore, it fails to impart the desired behavior to children. 

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Alternatively, take a “time-in” with your child, in which you sit quietly together. Hold them till they calm down if they’re extremely agitated. After they’ve calmed down, calmly explain why the behavior wasn’t acceptable. Too enraged to offer comfort? Put yourself in a time-out and talk about what you’d like your child to do differently after you’ve calmed. When Milo tries to steal your train, you might ask, “What can you do instead of hitting?”

7. Ignoring the fact that no two children are the same.

It’s better to sit down at eye level with your son and explain why his behaviors need to change. On the other hand, she’s more abrasive and refuses to listen to you.

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Developing a varied toolkit is the answer. Failure of a disciplinary technique is easy to blame your child. To acquire the desired behavior from each child, you may have to approach it uniquely. One youngster might respond to a verbal reminder of correct behavior, while the other might need a punishment for their misbehavior, like having the Wii unplugged. It’s not inconsistent to be harsh with one child and soft-spoken with another; rather, it’s a matter of recognizing that each child has unique needs and learning styles. The crime and the perpetrator should be penalized appropriately.

Helpful related articles: How To Discipline Children With ADHDThe Fun Mom’s Discipline HandbookHow to Use Positive Discipline