Positive Parenting: Utilizing Discipline to Teach by Natalie Chandler, MA, LMHC


When we hear the word “discipline” we generally think of punishment. However, it is important to remember that discipline is really about teaching. The word disciple comes from the word discipline. When you think of Jesus’ disciples, they were people trying to learn from Him so they could go out and teach and spread the Gospel. When you put this in the context of your children, try to frame it that you are teaching them how to function and experience life in the safest and most productive way possible, so they can teach their children to do the same.

One of the best ways to teach your child is thru positive reinforcement. When your child is having a lot of negative behaviors, it is really easy and natural to constantly focus on those behaviors. However, when we do this, the child focuses on the negative as well, gets down on his or herself, and we get down on the child and ourselves. This then becomes a cycle of negativity. It is important to try to focus on what they are doing right as well. Sometimes you may really have to dig to find something positive! But there is something there. Start small. It may be something as little as they said “Thank you”. Reward them for the positive and then build on that.

An excellent example of how this works was played out in my own home. [Read more…]

The Confident Mom’s Top Ten List


If you stopped and took a few minutes trying to re-count all the parenting books you have read over the years, how many would you come up with that have truly been helpful?  There are 51,780 books on parenting when I checked amazon.com this morning.  That is incredible, don’t you think?  How can there be that many different ways to raise our kids?  Guess what, there is not!

I am often asked about different books in my workshops and coaching calls with moms and I do have opinions.  My opinions are just that “MINE”.  What works for me and my family may not be a fit for your family, but that is what is so great about opinions – you can take what you like and leave the rest!

So with that in mind I went through my bookshelf and gathered up my Top Ten Must Have’s for Moms and here they are.  It is hard to put them in order but the first few books are definitely the MOST important and key resources I use on a regular basis. So here goes:

1)  The Bible: I don’t care what version you like – this is the one all moms need.  I cannot tell you how many times I have been stuck in a situation and am at a complete loss with what do to.  But I sit down, open this up and out pops a word that comforts me, gives me direction and gives me relief.

2)  ScreamFree Parenting by Hal Runkel, LMFT: If you have been following me long or are a past teleseminar participant or mom I have worked with, you know how passionate I am about the principles in this book.  This is the TOP book I think every mom (family) needs in their home.  It is easy to read, not a “cookbook” approach to parenting and truly works!  I can tell you it completely changed the way I parent, how I view my children and what my job as a parent is.

3)  Have a New Kid by Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman: Okay, first off….. the title is ridiculous and I feel they only gave it that title to sell books!  But in any event, the concepts Dr. Leman uses are very similar to ScreamFree Parenting.  This is a great addition for someone trying to incorporate ScreamFree into their home, because the back section gives specific examples of behaviors and how Dr. Leman suggests you handle it.  This is often the hardest part of ScreamFree Parenting for moms I work with, figuring out appropriate consequences and having to be creative.  This solves that problem to some degree.  (Still hate the title!!)

4)  The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families by Stephen R. Covey: A wonderful addition to all of the above, very similar principles and you can expand the concepts to create a strong family.  It is truly about building relationships within your family and making changes for future generations, and isn’t that what we are truly desiring?

5)  The Five Love Languages of Children by Gary Chapman, PhD and Ross Campbell, MD: Do you feel that you just cannot communicate effectively with your children.  This book is for you!  It opened up a new world for me when I understood how each of my children “felt” love from me.  This is a MUST READ!  I will be doing a teleseminar with this book very soon, including discussion and study – should be very informative, fun and eye-opening!

6)  The Big Book of Parenting Solutions by Michele Borba, Ed.D: This book is HUGE and packed with practical information and answers to nearly ANY parenting question you could come up with!  I love that it is divided into sections and easy to navigate.  She gives practical and solution based strategies that work – exactly what every mom needs.

7)  The Busy Mom’s Guide to a Happy, Organized Home by Kathy Peel: By breaking down your many tasks as a mom into bite-size pieces you can have a more organized day and home! Kathy Peel explains that by dividing your home into seven departments you can actually find more time in your day and stay on track!   Helpful charts and checklists to help in your daily tasks and lots of encouragement, what mom doesn’t need that?

8)  12 Simple Secrets Real Moms Know by Michele Borba, Ed.D: So book number two in the list by Dr. Borba, does that tell you anything about what I think of her stuff?  This book was such a wonderful relief for me to read, helping me to find balance and joy in my job as a mom.

9)  Raising Unselfish Children in a Self-Absorbed World by Jill Bigby: This book was in a tie with her other book that I also love, “Raising Respectful Children in a Disrespectful World”, but I thought the topic of selfishness in our children is huge, and some of the other books listed can help you with the subject of disrespect.  This book will be a light for your family if you feel you have been sucked into the current trend of needing and wanting more and more.  A true delight that helped changed the way our children view money.

10)  The Power of a Positive Mom by Karol Ladd: A wonderful book that helps keep our spirits up as moms in order to provide the backdrop that we desire for our families.  Our job as a mom is huge; the reality that we set the tone in our home is sometimes too overwhelming to carry, but Karol helps guide you to discover how to do this even when you feel so out of breathe!  She also has a few other books that I would recommend too, but I had only 10 spots!

So there you have it!  Hopefully there are a few new ones you haven’t had the joy of discovering yet.  So out of those 51,780 book, can you believe I could narrow it down to ten?  Well, I could go on if you’d like…..but that’s another post!