Discipline + Accountability + Affirmation = Respect
I wanted my children to grow into adults that had respect for themselves and were given respect by their peers.
I could tell from watching others raise their kids that without a plan, this was not going to happen.
I gave this a great deal of thought and this is what I came up with.
Discipline + Accountability + Affirmation = Respect.
Here are some examples…
Me: This is totally unacceptable! The two of you will spend the next hour together in your room. (discipline)
No toys, no playing! You will sit on one bed together and talk this out. (accountability)
You are both incredible young women with some much to give. I will not have this! I love you both too much to let you behave like this to each other (affirmation).
10 years old:
Me: This closet is a disaster! You are spending all day Saturday cleaning and organizing it (discipline).
Every Friday afternoon we’re going to inspect this closet together and if it’s clean, you can do something fun on Saturday and if not, you will stay home and clean it on Saturday (accountability).
You have it so together! You’re smart and organized and you take too much pride in yourself to let you things be a mess in your closet (affirmation).
10 and 14 years old:
Coming home from a long birth to a sink full of dishes and piles of unfolded laundry.
Me: This is bullshit! You are both grounded for the weekend! (discipline)
I know what’s important to you and I help you whenever I can. You know that our house being neat and organized is important to me. I am very disappointed that you did not clean up (accountability)!
We are a team. We work together and we all benefit. You are capable and competent and I value you as part of this family (affirmation). Don’t let this happen again.
Now this is WHY I think this formula is effective…
Discipline creates structure.
Structure creates predictability and predictability provides security.
When I know what to expect I feel more secure. This is important to me and so I pass it on to my children.
There will always be times where we don’t know what to expect and our anxiety levels will rise.
My children have also been given the “tools” to manage those times.
Through discipline we can confidently create structure in our lives and empower ourselves with the knowledge that we created it!
THIS is a tangible way to build self-esteem in our children!
Accountability is the second piece to this formula.
When we hold ourselves responsible for our mistakes or bad decisions, we can then be empowered by our ability to correct them.
If we believe we are not responsible for it, we also do not take responsibility for the correction.
There is power in knowing that we can improve on something and noting that improvement is a tangible way to develop great self-esteem!
Affirmation is the fun part!
Hearing frequent messages about our strengths feels amazing!
We remember them and when the messages are consistent, we believe them.
When children hear that they are great decision makers, they make great decisions!
When they hear that they can be counted on, they become people you can count on!
When they hear that they are responsible with money, they become responsible with money!
THIS is the single best way to help another human being develop great self-esteem!
Now here is the magic….
When we have great self-esteem, we have self-respect. Others note it and show us the respect that we deserve!
Authored by: The Rock n’ Roll Doula