• Wed. Dec 6th, 2023

How to raise honest and self-disciplined children?

A mother asked: \”How to cultivate the self-discipline of a two-year-old child? How to teach the child to control himself and use it in moderation, such as watching TV, eating snacks, and playing video games?\” Yoyo is a very self-disciplined child, but if you ask me, How it was cultivated, I really can’t answer for a while. I thought about how to write it for several days, and finally found that the question \”how to cultivate self-discipline in a two-year-old child\” was a false proposition. Let me tell you a story about Youyou, and you will know what I mean. Last week, Youyou came home and found two very thin wounds on her face. I asked her where the wounds came from. She said that she dug up an earthworm while playing in the kindergarten yard, and Timo and Renee wanted to take it from her. She was playing with earthworms, but she didn\’t give them to her, so they scratched her face. (I don’t know whether Yoyo’s description is completely true, but that’s not the point) “Oh, how did you react?” I’m always curious about Yoyo’s reaction when faced with conflict. \”I cried.\” I wasn\’t surprised at all when I heard this answer, because I knew that Yoyo didn\’t hit people, and I never taught her to hit her back in Germany. (Recommended reading \”When a child is bullied, teaching him to do so is more effective than teaching him to \”fight back\”\”) But I\’m still curious, why doesn\’t she fight back? She is not the kind of timid and cowardly child. So I asked her tentatively: \”When someone scratched your face, did you push them away?\” \”Then they would cry too!\” Youyou said. I immediately thought: \”Wow, I have raised my daughter so well! She is so empathetic! She also knows that pushing others will hurt the children and make them cry!\” I applauded myself in my heart! I asked again: \”Then how did you solve it?\” Youyou said: \”I went and told the teacher, and the teacher asked them to apologize. He also told Timo and Renee that if they hit people again, they would not be allowed in the yard. I’m playing here and I have to go back to the classroom.” I proudly told my husband about this, wanting to show off the success of my emotional intelligence education in front of him. After hearing this, her husband couldn\’t restrain his curiosity and continued to ask Yuyou: \”Then why didn\’t you push the children away when you knew they would cry?\” Yuyou thought for a while and said, \”Because I don\’t want to apologize to them.\” Uh-huh. …I was really surprised when I heard this answer! It\’s not because she was afraid of hurting others, but because she was afraid that the teacher would criticize her and ask her to apologize, so she didn\’t do anything! My husband and I laughed and cried on the spot. But it also made me understand that for young children, the power to restrain their behavior mainly comes from the outside. There is other discipline first, and then there is self-discipline. An undisciplined child is like an unruly wild horse, self-centered, indulging in desires, and not knowing where the boundaries are. Parental discipline is to tell children what they can and cannot do, where the boundaries are, and what the rules are. From heterodiscipline to self-discipline is a necessary process for a person to grow. Children must rely on parents, teachers and society for daily discipline in order to internalize external rules into their own behavioral habits, establish their own codes of conduct, and ultimately form self-discipline. A two-year-old child’s sense of rules has just begunIt has begun to sprout, and it is difficult to even observe heteronomy. How can it be self-disciplined? I\’m afraid this expectation is too high. It takes time to guide from heteronomy to self-discipline. Parents cannot be lazy in the process of cultivating children\’s self-discipline, and they cannot expect that children will follow a rule once or twice and develop self-discipline. How to help children develop self-discipline? 1. Establishing rules for children means starting with other rules. Establish a sense of rules in children from an early age. There are rules to follow in everything, boundaries, and no indulgence. The rules of the outside world are heteronomic at first, but as long as parents insist on enforcing them, they will gradually transform into self-discipline. Example: How to control eating sweets? Youyou has not liked to eat since she was a child, and her appetite is very small, but she loves sweets. I don’t want to stop my child from having a sweet tooth, but the problem is that she stops eating every time she eats sweets. I don’t want her to have sweets that will affect her main meal. Therefore, Youyou and I made a rule: sweets can only be eaten after meals. After finishing all the food in the bowl, you can eat sweets; otherwise, there will be no sweets. She protested at first, often craving sweets before eating. I kept reminding her of the rules and explained to her: \”In the past, if you ate sweets before meals, you would not eat. It was not good for your health. That\’s why my mother set such rules. I hope you will first Eat nutritious meals to ensure your healthy growth, and then eat sweets.\” After finishing the meal, she said she was full after taking a few bites, but asked for ice cream. I had to reiterate: \”You can have sweets only after the food in the bowl is finished. You don\’t have to finish it, then there will be no ice cream and no chocolate. You decide for yourself.\” Usually in order to eat sweets, she would insist on eating them. After the meal was finished, she said with a sense of accomplishment: \”I can eat ice cream now!\” Seeing her eating the ice cream with relish, I took the opportunity to add: \”You have finished all the food in the bowl, eat it.\” A lot of nutrients have been put in, which is great, so now you can enjoy the deliciousness of ice cream!\” The purpose of saying this is to remind children of the causal relationship between behavior and results. Because you did A, you Got B result. Describe the wonderful experience that result B brings to the child, thereby motivating the child to perform behavior A again. This rule works well in my house, and I turn Yoyo\’s sweet tooth into motivation for her to finish her meal. Of course, there are times when she can\’t eat, and she will take the initiative to say: \”Mom, I don\’t want to eat, and I don\’t need chocolate or ice cream later.\” Then I have nothing to force, maybe the child really has no appetite, and can\’t Ask your children to eat the same amount at every meal! If she wants to eat sweets again later, I have to remind her that she has not finished her meal and has no sweets to eat. no sooner said than done. This rule helped Yoyo gradually form the habit of controlling her sweets intake. When she came back from kindergarten and saw sweets on the table, she would ask me first: \”Mom, can I eat this?\”. Because she knows I will say no, sometimes she will take the initiative to say: \”You can eat it after I finish dinner.\” And because there are agreed rules, every time the child wants to break the rules, I only need to remind her Her rules are enough, and there is no need to reason too much (the children have actually heard the truth many times)). The child can understand that I am just enforcing the rules I have agreed upon, and will not think that I am targeting her, deliberately not giving her food, or not loving her. Children will obey rules that are constantly reiterated and enforced. We agreed that we could only eat one kind of sweet after finishing dinner, but she wanted to eat chocolate after finishing an ice cream. I reminded her that eating too many sweets is not good for the body. At this time, she took the initiative and said: \”Then I will eat it.\” An apple and then some chocolate, okay?\” I thought she had a good balance and agreed readily. Isn’t the original intention of my policy of “eating sweets after meals” just to hope that children can understand the importance of a balanced diet? Now that she has proposed using apples to balance the chocolate, it shows that she already has the concept of a balanced diet, so I have relaxed the rules one step and continue to adjust according to the child\’s progress. We set rules not only so that children can abide by them, but more importantly, so that children understand why they should abide by them. When children identify with the reasons behind the rules, they will be more willing to follow them, which will turn into self-discipline over time. 2. Adults must have self-discipline. Many people say, why is it useless if I set rules with my children? The child doesn’t listen at all! The fundamental reason is that parents do not follow through on what they say. They have set the rules, but when the child makes a fuss, you waver and stop enforcing it. Of course, the child will not abide by the rules. Parents\’ wavering is essentially a manifestation of their own lack of self-discipline and a bad example for their children to follow. You agree to watch for another 5 minutes and then turn off the TV. When the children cry or the adults are lazy, they agree to watch for another 5 minutes. We agreed not to eat after brushing our teeth, but as soon as the child said he was hungry, we immediately gave him something to eat. We agreed that we would only tell 2 stories tonight and go to bed before 9 o\’clock. The child begged us to tell him another one, but he relented and told 5 more stories. He was still awake at 11 o\’clock… This really can\’t be blamed on the child, obviously. Parents are not self-disciplined themselves and want to expect their children to be self-disciplined. The first step in raising self-disciplined children is for parents to practice self-discipline first and set a good example for their children. One of the manifestations of this is to keep the rules and promises they have made and not waver easily. 3. Live a regular life. If you observe your friends around you, you will find that most people who live a regular life are highly self-disciplined and do fixed things at a fixed time; while most people who live an irregular life lack self-discipline. Do whatever comes to mind, no planning. To cultivate children\’s self-discipline, please first create a self-disciplined environment, that is: a regular life. After eating, you can watch cartoons for half an hour, and then turn off the phone when the time is up; then it’s time to brush your teeth; go to bed and tell 3 stories, and then turn off the lights and go to sleep. Plan what you have to do every day in advance, have a fixed process, agree with your children on what time to do what, and form a routine of life, which can avoid children from repeatedly bargaining with us (such as watching TV, playing games, not sleeping, etc. question). On the contrary, if the order of daily life is chaotic, sometimes this way and sometimes that way, it will undoubtedly leave a lot of room for bargaining for the child, which will waste time and increase the troubles of the parents, and also destroy the formation of self-discipline. A regular life is actually a test of parents’ self-discipline. This goes back to the second point mentioned above.strip. The most direct way to cultivate self-disciplined children is to teach them what self-discipline is: get up when it’s time to get up; concentrate on work when it’s time to work; put down when it’s time to spend time with your children. Use your mobile phone to play with you wholeheartedly; when it’s time to read, turn off the TV and computer; when it’s time to sleep, stop scrolling through your phone… One of the best gifts parents can give their children is to create a regular life. In such an environment, children live a planned and controlled life every day, so it is not difficult to develop self-discipline. It’s still the old saying: when raising children, educate yourself first. We have achieved self-discipline ourselves, and our children are not far away from becoming self-disciplined either.

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