Parents sow the seeds of disobedience in their child from the moment
they start saying "no" or stopping their child from doing something
Discipline that is very strictly enforced doesn't do your child a whole lot of good in the long run. Your child will tend to do things behind your back, or he may not grow up to be a strong, confident
person, as you have never placed a whole lot of faith in his ideas, and
in what he wants to do. If you always ensure that he does things your
way, he will constantly need to be guided and lead every step of the
way. Such qualities do not make a leader.
Distract your child
Instead of actively preventing your child from doing something,
simply distract your child. When you see your child picking up
something from the floor and putting it in his mouth, instead of
shouting at him, distract his attention by pointing something out to
him or running up and tickling him, and so on.
If you command your child to stop something just when he is about to do it, the temptation
to disobey is very strong, and soon he will start disobeying you or
pushing you as far as he believes he can get away with. And then, as
your child grows older and starts becoming his own person, he will be
accustomed to opposing you to get his own way.
If you try distracting him instead of trying to get him to bow
down to your will, chances are that he will be more likely to listen to
you on the few occasions you do correct him.
"But then he will not learn!"
You don't need to stop your child there and then in order to
teach him that something is not right. A better way to would be to
explain to your child that he should not be doing a certain thing, at
another time. So, tell your child perhaps when he is eating his dinner,
that picking up something from the floor and putting it in his mouth,
or eating mud, is bad for his health.
Actions speak louder than words
Reema would never come to the table
when dinner was ready. Her parents would have to call out to her again
and again, and she would finally show up when they were through with
their meal. Reema's mother was tired of yelling at her, but nothing
seemed to work. Finally, one night they informed her once that dinner
was ready, and no one called out to her again. Reema wondered what was
wrong, and when she finally reached the table, she saw the food had
been cleared. They said she was too late and she could now have
breakfast in the morning. She went to bed hungry. The next few times
she reached the table on time, but a few days later, again she reached
late, and the food was cleared. Her parents told her that it was
entirely her choice - she could either reach the table on time, or she
could skip dinner entirely. The result was up to her. Within a month
Reema was reformed. Some parents cannot imagine letting their child go
to bed hungry, but remember, the best way to teach your child anything
is to show him that his actions have consequences.
"If it aint broke, don't fix it."
This popular phrase is
something every parent should keep in mind. Unless your child is doing
something that may cause him harm, don't constantly keep telling him
what to do and how to lead his life.