Parents need a whole tool box of parenting strategies to pull from in different situations. An intentional parent will have the end in mind and know what their big goals are for their family. Often we know where we are starting from, where we want to go, but have no idea how to get there. This week on The Parenting Coach Podcast I share strategies to help in your peaceful parenting journey. I also answer listener questions about consequences, and getting the playroom cleaned (yes it is possible).
In this episode I talk about several topics while answering questions from my Facebook community all about consequences, cleaning playrooms, and what strategies they should use as gentle parents.
Parenting with the end in mind
Something I noticed is that, when we’re parenting, oftentimes we’re just thrown into it. And you know, the kids, they grow so quickly, you can read all the manuals you want. And I’ve written books, and I know some amazing authors. And they generally do help, they are incredibly good resources. But when you’re in the middle of it all sometimes all that knowledge just goes right out the window, and we feel so unprepared. And that’s why it really takes being intentional in our parenting, working on ourselves, learning from different experts, so that we can feel more confident and have a plan.
When I’m going on a journey, whether it’s a vacation, or a trip, or a parenting journey, when I’m working on a big project for work, I always start with the end in mind. I know where I’m heading, I know where I want to go. So I’m asking you now either type it in the comments, email me message me or think about it, write this down. Where are you heading? In this parenting journey? Have you ever thought about that? What is the big outcome? What do you want your children or child to learn? By the time they move out? What knowledge what feelings? How do you want them to feel looking back at their childhood and the time they spent with you? How do you want them to, you know, What kinds of things do you want them to know? Or to learn?
I did this in a coaching call the other day. We had some great feedback. People said things like they want their children to be kind and empathetic. They want them to learn communication skills, problem solving. some practical things like life skills, cooking, money management. They want their kids to look back on their time as a family with good memories, loving knowing that we were there for them. What else do you have in mind? Where are you heading in your parenting journey? What is the point of this you know, it’s not just we get bogged down as parents with the itty bitty details, the school assignment, the project the vacation, the behavior, and and we get so caught up in the tiny details that we lose sight of the bigger picture and what we really want as parents and what we want for our kids now as a family of faith. My my faith is a big part of where I’m heading in my parenting journey, what I want for my children as far as education because we also have homeschool. So put all those things down. You need direction in your parenting if you want to be intentional.
Where am I starting from
Okay, so now we know where we want to go. But we need to take a bit of an assessment about where we are. I promise you, this is not meant for you to feel guilt in any way. So if any bad feelings, any guilt pops up, please ignore it. But you do need to take an honest assessment about where you are. Are you on the same page as your parenting partner? That’s something you need to know and think about? What don’t what are you doing right now? What’s working? What isn’t? Where do you want? What do you want to change? We need to stop every so often and assess what is our situation? What are my priorities now, my priority is a few years ago before like pandemic, and everything was totally different than when we got you know, into lockdown, my priorities shifted. What was important, then is different. Now I have different goals. So take a minute that you need a starting point, you need to know where you are now. What’s important to my family right now in our situation.
I know where I want to go, I know where I am, how on earth am I going to get there? But you see how, with a mindset shift. I’m not just randomly parenting these kids with with putting out fires every day. I know where I want to go, I know where I am now. And now I can filter out all the distractions of life to say, Hey, is that going to help me get where I want to go? Does this event this activity that my kids want to sign up for is that actually in line with what we want for our kids? It helps a little to be intentional and have a plan. With that we do need to deal with the realities of life.
Parenting strategies to use as a peaceful parent
Here are just a few strategies that can fill your parenting tool box.
- Give choices
- Kind and firm
- Offer grace
- Positive Affirmation
- Ask them for help
- Individual attention
- Listen to your children
Consequences and agreements and how to use them
If it is a first time offence or issue maybe this is a learning opportunity for the whole family. As parents we can offer some grace, lots of empathy, and we help solve the problem together. Then we come back for a family meeting and we say, “Hey, you know what, that situation is going to come up again, I think we need a plan, we need to know what we’re going to do the next time it comes up, we need to know what we’re going to do about it.”
And this is where I really like to think of agreements. Oftentimes families are looking for strategies, they come to parent coaches, and they ask, “what do I do? What consequences? How do I get my child to do this”.
However this can happen without actually thinking of the impact that it’s having on the child. And if you see something coming up often, or you anticipate something could be a problem, because you’ve read about it in books, you know, that around this age, this tends to be a general issue that people come up with, you are now going to be an intentional parent. We aren’t just parenting on the fly anymore. You want to be intentional in what you’re doing. So come talk to your kids make a plan, come alongside them and say, “Look, I can anticipate this as a problem, or this has been a problem before. Let’s brainstorm what we’re going to do about it? How can we prevent it from happening again? And what are we going to do? If it does?”
Now your role as the parent is to hold the space. Be consistent with the boundaries and limits.
How to get kids to clean the playroom
We’ve got lots of options as parents. There are many parenting strategies that could help in this situation.
- One option is purge those toys, they really don’t need so much.
- Clearly labeled bins with a picture for those non-readers sets our children up for success.
- Be playful.
- Get right in there and help them young kids, though they may be capable, are more likely to do things with you, they want to be connected to you.
- So work with them.
- Make it a game like Eye-spy or a race.
- Offer choices.
- Kind and firm.
- Problem solve
- Check to see if something else is going on (hungry, tired, etc.
- Put on some fun music.
- Clean the room for them.
- Offer some grace.
- Listen to them.
- Picture with what the room looks when it is clean
- Train your children.
- Break the job into little chunks.
You can have your boundaries, have your limits, have your this is what’s going to happen if and when in different situations. And then hold to that. And if you can involve your children and have them brainstorming even better, because now you’re teaching them life skills, we’re thinking with the end in mind, we’re teaching them how to problem solve, we’re teaching them how to negotiate. We’re teaching them how to communicate what their needs are. And so it’s how we’re starting with where we’re at, we’ve got a problem, we know where we want to head and we can have all these different parenting tools in between to help us get there.
I mention a free workshop How to Avoid Holiday Burnout. The workshop already happened by the time the episode came out, but you can catch the replay here: https://gentleparentingcoach.com/2021/10/26/how-to-avoid-holiday-burnout/
I invite you to join my Facebook group
You may also like the parenting strategies video series in my freebies hub
Meaghan Jackson Gentle Parenting Coach
Don’t miss the recent Redfin article we were featured in: “How to Keep a Clean House With Kids: 18 Expert Tips”
It’s no secret that raising children is messy. And while we wouldn’t change a thing, kids across the country, from Orlando, FL to Boise, ID, have a unique ability to get into everything and create disorder.
Keeping a clean house with kids can sometimes feel impossible, especially with the never-ending piles of laundry, dishes, and to-do lists. No matter how much effort you put in or how much time you spend, your home never seems as clean as it once was. Luckily, Redfin compiled a list of the top cleaning tips. From tried and true cleaning routines, strategies to get the little ones to help out, to decluttering and organizing hacks, check out what we had to say!