Sunday, August 22, 2010

Positive Discipline Tool Card - Understand the Brain

When people are upset, they access the fight/flight part of their brains.

1) Do not try to solve a problem when you or your child are upset.
2) Wait for a cooling off period when you can all access your rational brains.
3) In addition to positive time-out, putting the problem on the family meeting agenda (or asking your child to) allows for a cooling off period.

By a show of hands, how many people read the #1 point above and said "Yeah Right". I mean come on...most of us solve 90% of our problems with our children when we are upset. Or maybe I shouldn't say "Solve" our problems, but we attempt to solve our problems when we are upset. So I suppose this is a much needed tool card.

My children tend to push my buttons when we are out doing something and there are time pressures involved. Stopping to cool down is not always an option and therefore my "rational brain" doesn't get involved much. I end up getting completely irrational in the moment. 

So what is the answer when there is not time to cool off or take a time out? I would love to hear thoughts from everybody on this topic. Hopefully we will get Dr. Jane Nelsen to chime in as well. 

On the bright is starting this week! Can I get a Hip, Hip, Hooray!!!


Karen said...

I can totally relate Brad. I think the first thing is to try not to have those time pressures in the first place if you can help it. Everyone tends to snap more and not act their best when they're rushed. Try to build in a little extra time to reduce the rushing. Easier said then done, I know.

I'm trying to get into the habit of asking if we can get together to talk about this at a later time when everyone's not so upset, giving a specific time, and then making sure I do follow up. You know you're making progress when your kids start suggesting that!

How about humour? "Oh no, f I try to handle this now I might EXPLODE (make a crazy face)! How about we talk in an hour?"

I honestly can't think of any way to actually handle things well when both people are (or one person is) upset without suggesting a break to cool down.

Deep breathing and counting to 10 might help to calm yourself down so that at least one person is more rational!

Jane Nelsen said...

Get really good at apologizing. :-)
Then your kids get to practice forgiveness. :-)

I think there is a 3 Rs of Recovery from Mistakes card.

Jane Nelsen said...

I want to share another story from you sister Mary. When Mary is patient and coming from her rational brain, and Greyson is not, she will rationally say, "Lst's sit down and talk about this." Last week she got so annoyed at his bratty behavior that she grabbed his had and said, "We are leaving." Greyson tried apologizing and promising to be good. Mary kept walking (and dragging). Finally Greyson said, "Can't we sit down and talk about this?" Of course Mary melted; and they did.

Karen said...

This comment doesn't relate specifically to this post, but I received this newsletter by Jon Gordon today and it reminded me of how Positive Discipline is important in all areas of our lives.

Single Dad Brad said...

I think a lot of my frustration has come from the final days of summer. My kids have become so bored that they are entertaining themselves by constantly bugging each other. My son has a new hobby of contradicting anything you say and then putting everybody down at every opportunity. My daughter has a new hobby of yelling and screaming when her brother even occupies the same area code as her. But today is the first day of school and I am sitting here with a smile on my face as my kids are arguing and screaming at each other, because today I will have 6 1/2 hours of peace and quiet. Time to get the house organized and catch up on work. Time to focus on a project. And time for my children to regain their sanity without seeing each other all day long. Life is good!!! :-)