It feels good to have someone tell you that you are good. It feels good to have someone tell you that you are better than someone else. That statement is actually discouraging. We are telling our kids how good they are, but instead of motivating to better behavior it defeats us.
The principle is in tact, but it has to be done a certain way to be internal. You have to be able to talk to them in a way that the positives you say can go inside.
The sincerity of the giver isn’t what is crucial in whether she can internalize it. You have to make it safe for the other person to take it in. If it’s not then it creates baggage and disbelief on the part of the receiver.
Your children will say in their heads…”You have to say that you are my Mom.”
It puts you back into that competition. It’s seeking the praise of the world. I’m only good if someone outside strokes. We live in a society that creates it. In our society it is “no child left behind.” Everyone gets a trophy and everyone gets a reward for everything. We have taken out ‘competition’, but we have taken out the value of the reward that comes from effort.
We have to teach that value comes from effort not from the product. If they put in effort you can win. Are you headed the right direction? We aren’t going to focus on where you are on the path.
Class member: We implemented into our home the Love Languages in our kids. My oldest is ‘words of affirmation’. One was ‘gifts’. It was interesting for them to see that they can receive love differently. My husband had to say, “What would your love language like me to do?”
Everyone needs affirmation to feel valuable. Some need a little more and some a little less. We need to talk about ‘how do you say those words of affirmation?”
For today….Praise (negative) and Encouragement (positive)
Praise comes from an outside source. We want to learn to speak in such a way that the value comes from the inside out…Encouragement.
We want to make children non-dependent on the praise of the world. Many of you were raised with praise and guilt. As you then get into a marriage it becomes baggage because if your husband doesn’t give ‘praise’ from the outside you feel like the spark has gone out. If you are dependent on that it becomes your value system. If you raise children in praise and criticism and guilt they feel like if you aren’t telling me I’m wonderful I must not be good enough.
- External---outside in. Dependent on someone else.
- Frequently couched in superlatives and generalities (You are the BEST little boy). That creates value.
- Creates a winner/loser. If someone is the BEST someone else is the WORST.
- They are generic. No specifics. (You are a good kid because you did a good job.)
- It’s product oriented. (You are wonderful because you got an “A”.) If you don’t get an “A” you aren’t wonderful. Only when you do something great can you be of worth. (You are the BEST little girl because you cleaned your room so good.) It defeats them and they don’t want to even try.
- One time event—if you are wonderful right now in 15 minutes I need to tell you again.
- It’s addictive. I need more and more so I know that I’m ok. When it stops then I start wondering what’s wrong with me.
- You are the BEST little helper.
- You are the BEST speller. You won the spelling bee. (That’s creating value on the behavior)
- You are the PRETTIEST little girl I have ever seen. (If there is enough people under me I’m ok. We criticize and gossip to keep people under me.)
- Many of you hate Mother’s Day because of praise. It’s because of praise and guilt. What do you do about it. You change your perception of it.
Class member: I feel like this is something that I have really been working on. Still one of my kids gets in trouble and she thinks she’s a bad kid. My daughter gets in trouble and she says you love the boys more than me.
Now teach them the difference between the value and choices. You are a wonderful daughter and I love you, but you made a bad choice.
- Focuses on effort instead of product. (A child who gets an “F” can get encouragement.
- It is specifics! VERY Specific!!! (If you walk into your child’s room and you don’t know what to say. When in doubt ask yourself this question…What is it about this that I like? You walk into the room….”I love the way you got your blanket on the bed so neat. Did you take extra time to fluff up that pillow? I see all your teddy bears lined up on your bed. Are they taking a nap? Keep the value out of it. You aren’t saying (you are a good girl). You want her to think (I did a good job on the pillow) From the inside of them!! They know that they can do that again. They have the power and ability to do that again.
- They need to be validated from the inside out and not need it from the outside.
- It’s the process of becoming
Syllabus…Page 57 (Ways to change Praise into Encouragement)
They need to feel capable and worthy and that they have power to determine which direction they are going. This is what will keep missionaries on missions. They are not dependent on the world for strokes.
- Praise: What a good girl you are for helping me in the supermarket. (value judgment…if you don’t help you are a bad girl)
- Encouragement: I really appreciate your help in the supermarket today. (Can I be as good tomorrow? Yes.
- Praise: What a good boy you are for cleaning the living room. (value judgment…then you tell them what they did wrong in there.)
- Encouragement: Thank you for cleaning the living room. I like the way you stacked the magazines.
Encouraging comments: (Bottom of pg 57)
- It seems like you are having some difficulty with school. Maybe we can sit down and discuss it.
- Whenever I make mistakes I try and learn from them. What do you think you can learn from it?
Syllabus pg 61 (Problem Ownership)
One of the most important ways to teach our children to feel encouraged is to help them feel capable because they can do hard things. What is a child’s problem and what is your problem? Do you have power over your child failing? Do you have power over your child’s testimony? Do you have power over how you feel about it? YES! You need to help them learn how to deal with their problems. Typically we ‘fix’ their problems.
You don’t have friends…let’s do this.
Your grades are bad...you don’t get to go out for the next 27 weeks.
Teach them how to solve their problems and come up with their own answers.
LISTEN don’t give answers, just listen. Allow them to fail! Let them learn from it. Say, “This was just one option that didn’t work. How else can we change?” This is where creative thinking comes in. Failure doesn’t mean you are bad or good. It means you discover something that didn’t work. This is how you teach the consequence of the failure. We are trying so hard to make them succeed and not get hurt. Life is not like that. They need to learn that it is ok to fail, address it, and come up with another solution that might work.
Why do you think Nephi had to go back 3x to get the plates? There were things that needed to be learned through failure. Heavenly Father isn’t there to make everything easy.
HOMEWORK: Elder Holland “Be Ye Therefore Perfect Eventually”
HOMEWORK: Study (different than reading) “How Not To Talk to Your Kids!” Research paper. Come prepared to give me your take away.
HOMEWORK: Validate your children 10 to 1. Encourage them 10x to every 1 negative.
You are generally reactive with your children. You go logistics where they are going, giving out assignments. We aren’t always good with the positives. We need to keep the bank account up so they can learn to teach.
I think we should tell our children we are a child of God. It is important for you to look for and tell your children what their spiritual gifts are.
Syllabus pg 59-60 4 steps and problem ownership.
- Teach them creative thinking. Help them develop hobbies. Help them think outside the box. Be free in their thinking. (Example: Business college course instead of lectures you are divided into teams they have to create a business. That’s creative thinking. It has to be money making by the end of the semester.) (Example: Give them a craft box and let them design what they want.) We tend to stifle that. Lego has taken that away.
Class member: I wanted to use the white board for to-do lists. They play add on. She will draw a couple of lines and squiggles and they turn it into a picture.
- Help them set goals and achieve them. That comes in PPI’s, Scouts, personal goals, hobbies. If you don’t know how to sew, find someone who makes cinnamon rolls. Make that happen. Teach them that there are no dead end roads.
- Heavenly Father loves them and they have divinity.
The key in trying to teach them is that they are resilient. They don’t have to be perfect or better than or the best. They have to be on their way. They have to be dependable and moving forward.
Poem in the syllabus: Carleen’s Dance