Sunday, August 1, 2010

Positive Discipline Tool Card - Compliments

Compliments and appreciations bring us closer together.

Focus on accomplishments and helpfulness to others:
1) “I appreciate how quickly you get dressed and ready for school.”
2) “I notice how kindly you cared for Anna when she felt sad, I bet it helped her feel better”
3) “Thank you for setting the table.”

Flattery will get you everywhere! This Positive Discipline Tool Card works in every walk of life...not just with your children. Everybody will have a little more spring in their step when they receive a compliment.

We start all of our family meetings with compliments which helps set the tone for a more positive experience. This week I complimented Gibson on learning two new songs on his piano. Throughout the week I gave him positive feedback and told him that I was impressed with his initiative. But there is something about taking that time at a family meeting to make a specific compliment that makes it more meaningful.

I also complimented Emma for helping me with my daily chore when I was running late for a very important meeting (I had a tee-time at the golf course at 8:00 a.m.). Emma doesn't like doing the dishes, but she willingly helped me because the kitchen needed to be cleaned because there were people coming over to the house. I told her thank you at the time, but I also made a specific compliment at the family meeting.

You should see my children light up when they receive a specific compliment. Never under-estimate the power of a compliment...especially when you take time out to give the compliment in front of the rest of the family.


Michael Morris said...

I typically try to emphasize the resources my kid used and feed that back. I rarely say that it made *me* feel something. To my 6-year-old son when he watered the back without being asked I said "Wow, it must feel great to know how happy those plants are to see you! They look so full and happy when they've been watered." he responded with a smile and "yeah". His sense of belonging seems huge when this happens. I notice he's more likely to do more if he feels like he's accomplished something special, not to please me, but instead to have made a difference.

Anonymous said...

I'm embarrased to say that my son (nearly 5) is better at complimenting me for doing my chores (e.g cooking dinner) than i am for complimenting him and showing appreciation for him doing his.....hmmm....thanks for shining a light on this.

Anonymous said...

This is great advice, and Michael Morris, I really love your comment.