More Effective Parenting With Empowering Parents' CEO Kimball Lewis
🏉 Go Sports!
Jenny: My students are all CRAZY for World Cup – and I’m trying to resist it!
Caitlin: DUDE. The University of Colorado has offered the head football coaching position to Deion Sanders. DEION FREAKING SANDERS. “Prime Time.” “Neon Deion.”
As of this recording, Coach Prime is preparing his team, the Jackson State Tigers, to play in the Southwestern Athletic Conference championship game on Saturday, December 3rd. Sanders' Tigers are undefeated this season and the favorite to win the conference's championship. We’ll find out more after the game.
During his career, he was named to eight Pro Bowls, received six first-team All-Pros, and made consecutive Super Bowl appearances in Super Bowl XXIX (29) with the 49ers and Super Bowl XXX (30) with the Cowboys, winning both. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the College Football Hall of Fame in 2011.
Soooo… Kind of a big deal.
👏 Current Obsessions
Jenny: My dishwasher sounds oddly similar to the Quiznos jingle – remember that? Just in case you don't...
Caitlin: My personal Spotify Wrapped – SO much Wombats! And tons and tons of Imagine Dragons – Sam’s favorite band.
💎 Gem Of The Week
Jenny: Kit: “It causes invisible damage.” – we should now be saying this to our therapists…
Caitlin: I was asked to spray “Monster Spray” (water w/lavender essential oil) before leaving Sam’s room one night this week. When I asked if he was feeling afraid, he said, “No, spray it just in case I get the heeby jeebies.”
Interview w/Kimball Lewis, CEO of Empowering Parents.com
Why do kids act out?
Kids are trying to solve a problem, so they’ve turned to acting out to solve it. That problem has to do with meeting their responsibilities. And, consciously or unconsciously, they know that by acting out, the parent will cave, because it's just easier to do it themselves than it is to fight with their child!
“You don’t have to attend every fight you’re invited to.” 🤯
Make a list of things that are effective and ineffective in your parenting. Do the things that are effective. Fighting and yelling don't work. We know this. Yet, because we struggle to remain calm, we repeat these ineffective behaviors over and over again. (Isn't that the definition of insanity?)
“Avoid the ‘Why’ Trap
Explain yourself once and move on. You don’t owe your child an explanation. One of Jenny’s lines with her children is, “I’m not going to change my mind.”
“You Are Not to Blame for Your Child’s Behavior”
You’re not responsible for your child’s behavior. Don’t internalize that. The accountability needs to be on your child, not on you. And here's why:
Your child will figure out that you feel guilty and will use that to manipulate you.
They will stop taking any responsibility for their behavior and blame it on the parent their entire lives.
And, you risk hurting your future relationship with your child, because you won’t be able to forgive and move forward if you feel that their behavior is a personal attack on you.
Think of the circle of impact. You can’t control other people at all. You can only control yourself.
“You can’t feel your way to better behavior. But you can behave your way to better feelings.”
The Esteem Movement: Inflating a child’s self-esteem does not improve their behavior. BUT, improved behavior does improve self-esteem. When children receive genuine positive feedback on their behavior, they feel better about themselves.
“The #1 Rule for Giving Consequences: You Can’t Punish Your Child Into Good Behavior”
Consequences are done for a reason, punishments are not.
Is the natural consequence enough? For instance, did your child throw a toy, and now that toy is broken? That’s enough of a consequence because now they don’t have that toy (and YOU, parent, are not going to replace it!) If not, you can add a task-oriented consequence.
Task-oriented consequences are more effective than timed consequences. No “doing time” with “no phone for a month” or “no TV for a week.”
A task-oriented consequence is removing something valuable to your child. Then, as soon as you see the positive behavior that you want to see, return that item. For example, Jenny had a hard time with Kit on their way to daycare (the story is hilarious – give it a listen!). The consequence could be taking away Kit’s favorite toy. The very next time Kit goes to daycare, if he does so without causing the same problem, he will get that toy back that day.
Reward those positive behaviors with recognition. “I saw you” statements are incredibly powerful. Point out when you see your child doing something right – and do this IMMEDIATELY. It will make a difference.
Prepare, Prepare, Prepare
Let’s plan for the next time the behavior happens because it will. Be thoughtful about this – think about the behavior triggers and each result.
Practice being calm in the face of the problem.
Role play! Act out the situation with someone else or your child when they are calm.
No rash decisions when it comes to consequences — nothing that you will regret later on (we promise, you’ll regret saying “no TV for a month”)
Go to EmpoweringParents.com to access free articles, and sign up for their email newsletters. For additional support, you can sign up for the Total Transformation program and/or for coaching sessions (which can be anything from a safe space to vent to problem-solving).
You've got this, Parents. You're doing great.
Caitlin & Jenny
More about Kimball Lewis and Empowering Parents
Kimball Lewis, CEO
Kimball Lewis is an executive who has spent his career using research and technology to improve the lives of individuals and businesses. He began his career as a health, welfare, and child policy researcher for a leading public policy think-tank in Washington, DC. He then served as a technologist and executive in a series of successful healthcare start-up businesses. Mr. Lewis joined EmpoweringParents.com as CEO in 2017. At EmpoweringParents.com, Mr. Lewis is committed to ensuring that the timeless and practical parenting advice of James Lehman and The Total Transformation® endures for future generations of parents struggling to manage the most challenging child behavior problems. Mr. Lewis resides in Florida, USA, with his wife and two teenage sons.