When talking behind your kid's back is a great thing to do
We’ve all done it. Complained about our kids on the phone then hung up the phone only to realize that your little one has bigger ears than you’d realized! Kids do listen intently to what we are saying about them to other people. It’s a no brainer to say, “Hey, don’t say negative things about your kids to other people when they are apt to be able to hear you.”
Keeping it positive
On the other hand, it might not be quite so obvious that saying positive things to other people about your kids is an EXELLENT idea! Imagine it for a moment, you and your husband are talking over dinner and you casually say, “Honey, Johnny did such a great job picking up his room today. I only had to remind him a couple of times and his whole room is clean!” Your husband says, “Wow, that’s fantastic!” Believe me Johnny is going to be listening and taking notes!
On the telephone
Another good opportunity is when you are talking on the telephone. You think that your junior higher is glued to her iPod, but just say her name to your friend on the phone, and she will be all ears.
Talk a little more animatedly than usual—show how excited you are about her good behavior. Leave the criticisms and back handed compliments out of it. This is an opportunity to let your child know what behaviors you value as well as how you feel about her. Make the most of this opportunity.
Even kids who roll their eyes at you when you praise them directly will hear it loud and clear when you say it to someone else. As an added benefit that other person will also get into the act with you and show their admiration loud and clear.
So go ahead and talk about them—just keep it good!
All the best,
Karen DeBolt, MA
Calm the Chaos Parent Coaching
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Karen DeBolt, MA. Parent Coach and Family Therapist
Struggling with Chaos at home and want happy successful children? Download our free report, “How to conquer bad behavior without stress.” http://www.counselingformoms.com/docs/specificpraise.pdf
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