The importance of consistency in parenting can never be over-emphasized. It is the most essential requirement as far as child discipline is concerned. Any lapse will cause heavy damage in terms of reverting to bad behavior by the child. Yet, it cannot be denied that maintaining consistency is also the most arduous task. After all, parents are but human and children can sometimes drive you up the wall. Nonetheless, if you, as a parent, can get over the initial hurdles to being consistent, there are a number of benefits waiting for you.
You will need an unshakable determination to deal with children; children can be exasperating at times. They will test your will power. Older children will be defiant and younger ones will just not remember the rules. Your task is to go on repeating the same rules over and over again until they are well established. During the course of this drill, you may encounter sudden bursts that will catch you unawares and off guard. You need to be conscious of such moments and have a back-up strategy to deal with the unanticipated situation. Basically, you should be able to pre-empt your childs moves and have a solution.
The younger the children are when you start and maintain consistency, the better. There are some steps that might help you get started on the road to providing consistency.
1. Sit down and communicate. This talk should be between parents and involve laying out a planned course of action for establishing child discipline. Take a look at areas where consistency is lacking and develop a plan for establishing consistency.
2. Perseverance: You cant succeed at once. You will have to be patient and persevering. Every time you seem to fail and think your strategy is not working, start with renewed energy and keep at it. Don’t quit half way.
3. Stick to the plan but don’t be afraid to adapt it as necessary. Nothing is ever written in stone. If you need to change a part of your consistency establishment and maintenance plan, and then change it. Don’t stay with something you know isn’t working.
4. Team work: Parents must work as a team supporting each other and backing each other up. You may want a support system consisting of a close friend, family member or professional who can provide objective parenting tips and view point.
5. Guidance: If you are not fully confident, you must ask for parenting help from professionals or other parents.
Being consistent with child discipline isn’t easy. As parents, following the tips of sticking together, communicating, persevering, supporting and being willing to ask questions – you can establish a routine of child discipline that works for everyone.
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