Caught You Doing Something Great!

Caught You Doing Something Great!

It is probably safe to say that most parents would like to increase their children’s positive behaviour.

Sometimes as parents there can feel like an overwhelming amount of things to work on with our children. Whether that be manners, prosocial skills, academic skills, independent skills, or just that overall pressure and desire to raise decent human beings.

Given the lofty task at hand, it can feel necessary to program ourselves to notice and address these concerns. Before we know it, it might feel as if alarm bells are constantly going off on all the behaviours that need addressing.

There is no doubt that addressing these things are important and part of our parental duties, and in the midst of all the correcting and teaching, I offer a suggestion. If you want to increase positive behaviours in your children, start noticing what is going well.  If your behaviour radar seems set to detect just the negative behaviours, try flipping the switch, even just a bit to start detecting the things already going well! Notice the positive behaviours already happening and acknowledge them, praise them, and high five about them. It won’t solve all your problems, but it may start to shift things and the increased confidence and positivity may be the building blocks for the next skills.

Research shows that giving attention to behaviours, whether those are positive or negative behaviours will increase the likelihood of that behaviour occurring again. Catching and acknowledging those positive behaviours really does make a difference!

Lots could be said about the art of praise but being specific and genuine is a great place to start.

So today as you go about all the things that come along with parenting, try and catch your kids doing well, and let them know! Who knows, you may be surprised to find there are more great things happening than you thought!

Blog Post by: Janelle Janzen BSW RSW, Clinical Counsellor

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