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Discipline Your Child with Time IN

Sure you’ve heard of Time Out, but have you heard of Time In? It’s a positive disciplinary tool that’s starting to make its rounds in the parenting world. Unlike the traditional Time Out method, Time In does not send the child away, off to some lonely, dusty corner of the room or some remote area of civilization! In fact, studies have shown that the old-style Time Out technique can leave a child feeling abandoned and rejected, and often confused. If you give this idea some thought, you might find it easy to draw this same conclusion.  That’s why I was excited to learn about Time IN -  a good alternative to Time Out. Here’s the gist: 

When your child is having a difficult time behaving or obeying, request that he comes to sit or stand somewhere near you. This requirement likely moves him away from any “trouble” he’s currently into, and it allows him to settle down and reflect on negative behaviors, all the while still being accepted and loved by you. You can hold his hand, sit him on your lap, require that he stands next to you while you finish washing dishes, etc., as long as you’re bringing him in rather than pushing him out. As mom, feel free to continue your current activity – a phone conversation, knitting, loading the dishwasher – with  little one nearby, but eventually make time to address the details of the situation.

The connection your child makes with you during this Time In can be quite therapeutic. Use it as a time to talk with your child about the behavior and consequences, and allow him to comment or ask questions if he doesn’t understand.  A long conversation need not be necessary. A gentle reminder of the behavior you’re displeased with is often just enough to make a point. Keep your child at bay until you feel as though he’s had adequate time to reflect and is ready to return to the activities of the day.

Over time, the Time In technique can builds trust, security, and respect between you and your child. If you’re thinking that being able to cuddle with mommy isn’t quite the “punishment” you had in mind for your child, remember that discipline is not equivalent to punishment, and furthermore, many young kids dislike the discipline of HAVING to remain in one place – near mom or otherwise, especially if they have other matters (like playing) to tend to.

Next time you’re tempted to give your child a Time Out, try Time In instead and see how this works for you. your social media marketing partner
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