Thursday, June 9, 2011

Parenting Tip #78 Replace Negative Thoughts

Has this scenario every happened at your house? You see your child picking her nose and you automatically say, “don’t pick your nose.” Your child keeps picking.
You tell yourself, “I’m not going to eat any chocolate today.” All day long you think of chocolate and finally break down and eat some.
The brain can’t replace thoughts with nothing, so whenever you want to change what you’re thinking, the brain will continue thinking about the negative thought unless you give it something else to think about. That’s what Bruce Fordham, psychotherapist, talked about in a podcast I recently listened to (

You want your children to tell the truth, but you’re always asking, “are you lying to me?” You hate cleaning the kitchen and you keep thinking about how dirty it is and how MANY dishes there are and how long it will take. You are constantly telling your children, “Hurry up. You are so slow!”

Fordham tells us we need to replace the negative thoughts with positive thoughts. We need to visualize the positive.

How do we do that? Catch your child telling the truth and say, “I appreciate it when you tell me the truth. I can trust you because I know you are honest.” Then go tell Dad or grandma how truthful your child is (in his hearing).

Visualize your clean kitchen. Feel the delicious cleanliness of it. Then put some music on, set the timer and sing and wash away those dishes.

Encourage your child with mentioning how quickly he is obeying. Say things like, “wow, thanks for trying to hurry. That really helps the whole family.”

Remember—replace negative thoughts with healthy, positive thoughts and visualizations of action.

Then, be patient with yourself and your family. Changes don’t happen overnight. Bad habits can only change when a GOOD habit is formed to take it’s place.

1 comment:

  1. I was taught this a while back, but haven't been practicing it! Thank you for the post! I will be sure to stick with it this time...hopefully.




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