Positive Discipline workshop

Photo Reportage of a SoSooper Workshop with INSEAD Alumni

Do you face challenging behaviors or difficult people in your life?

“All the world is queer (odd) save thee and me,
and even thou art a little queer (weird).” – Robert Owen

Relationships are tough and take work. 

It’s true for everyone…whether you have an MBA from INSEAD or graduated from the school of Street Smart or are too young for studies.  Little issues escalate into big annoyances.

  • Your manager “bosses” around, imposing demands without seeking your input
  • Your colleagues are on the phone during your presentations
  • Your partner treats you like a child, “Don’t forget to______”
  • Your child repeatedly misbehaves…. again!!

There are two ways to handle such situations.

Either one party wins and the other loses (Win-Lose “negotiations”)….

Or no-one loses, and everyone gains. (Win-Win results)

It’s sooooo much easier said than done.  That’s why I lead workshops to transmit skills to transform challenges into opportunities for growth for everyone.

Science-Based Relationship Tools

How does one travel from challenges to opportunities?  With relationship tools.  You and I tend to use the same tools over and again.

“I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.” – Abraham Maslow

The SoSooper workshops teach an array of relationship-building tools which build mutual respect, a sense of belonging, and the desire to positively contribute to the group.

These science-based tools are based on the work of Dr. Alfred Adler (author of Individual Psychology), Dr. Jane Nelsen (PhD in Education) and psychologist Lynn Lott.  Nelsen and Lott designed the Positive Discipline approach of learning activities which engage the mind, body, and emotions

Photo Reportage of our Interactive Learning Workshop

These INSEAD alumni participated in the conference, Introduction to Positive Discipline for Parents.  I lead numerous workshops for very different audiences, especially for groups of professionals.  With a team of other trainers, we adapt the strong relationship principles to the organizational context.

Discover Also: SoSooper Workshops & Conferences for Teams at Work

Enjoy this glimpse of our event!

Welcome & Context

When speaking with parents who are also professionals, I introduce parenting as leadership development.  We aim to bring up children who will sooner than later be someone’s colleagues.   We also deeply desire that our kids be leaders of their life, that they have the skills and capabilities to thrive.

Notice on the photos how the group is fully attentive.  No phones in sight!

INSEAD alumni at Positive Discipline conference

Inviting Contribution

As humans, we each have the fundamental needs to belong and to contribute.  I put this into practice as of the start, inviting the group to contribute with chores to make our evening conference flow smoothly.  We made a list of Jobs (scribe, clean up, photographer…).  Once the list completed, I invited folk to volunteer for a task.

Silence!

One of the principles of Adlerian Psychology and Positive Discipline is to be FIRM and KIND simultaneously.  The group presented me with the opportunity to model that behavior.

Smile.  “These Jobs still apply and we still need volunteers for each.  Who would like to choose what?” Wait expectantly.

One by one, people stepped up to contribute.  Thanks to each of you.

Oftentimes when a leader assigns a job to someone else, there remains a follow-up period.  It’s like selling the need to do the work. This happens in the office as well as in the home.  Since people volunteered, there was no more need for a convince-to-do-the-job effort.

Engaging group at SoSooper workshop

Set the GPS

Next, as a group, we created two lists.  In our case, we focused on behaviors related to our children.  In a professional context we would focus on behaviors and goals for our team culture:

  • Challenging behaviors of our children
  • Talents & Life Skills we want them to develop

No need to prompt with these.  Suggestions flow, and fast.  Difficult behaviors include perpetual negotiation, defiance, rivalry…  Capabilities to develop include self-esteem, autonomy, desire for excellence, sense of humor….

These lists represent our GPS.  The challenges represent our starting position, today’s situation.  These issues create the invitation to act differently so that, instead of reacting to misbehavior, we proactively train in appropriate conduct and demeanor.

Setting GPS at Positive Discipline workshop

Discovering a Tool

Much of the learning is done by allowing participants to discover the perspective of the other party, in this case, of their child.

Each of the fifty relationship tools presented in my full training programs is presented through a unique interactive exercise which, like this one, engages the whole person.  Instead of theory, participants discover the learning principles for themselves.  “Aha!”

Act 1

In this activity, ten folk played the role of parents and one father played the role of a child.  The “parents” gave the “child” instructions.

“Put your shoes on.” “Brush your teeth.” “Put the phone down.” “Stop fighting with your brother.”…

I love to see how parents enjoy these scenarios.

After this first passage, we debrief the “child” and discover that these instructions encouraged him towards the CHALLENGING BEHAVIORS, like defiance and resistance!

INSEAD alumni at Positive Discipline workshop

Act 2

We embark on a second passage.  This time “parents” present their request through a Firm and Kind question“Do you want to put your blue or your red shoes?” “What do you need to do so your teeth don’t feel scuzzy?!” “What is our agreement on phone usage?” “How could you work this out with your brother?” 

In debriefing, the “child” says he feels responsible and respected.  He is invited to think.  And he chooses to consider each question and probably act on it.  In looking at the two lists, this time he identifies with the talents and skills.  He’s learning decision-making, autonomie, and that he is capable.  His confidence grows.

Denise Dampierre and INSEAD alumni

Through playing the scenario and discussion, participants arrrive at the conclusions themselves:  giving people instructions generates resistance.  Asking questions invites cooperation.

Giving people instructions generates resistance.
Asking questions invites cooperation.

Tools Galore

This Introduction to Positive Discipline provides a taster of the numerous aids to build relationships that respect BOTH the framework-need of the parents and the connection-needs of the children, and to leaders and team-members for professional settings.

These relationship tools work in multiple contexts.

Discover: SoSooper Workshops & Conferences for Teams at Work

Contact me to find out more and to plan a taster event for your network.

Woman doing pushups in Pilates class

Lead Constructive Meetings – Tips from Pilates

For many of us, meetings are a necessary evil.  We need team ressources and support, so we have to meet.  And yet many meetings feel unproductive.

How does one organize and run a meeting for optimal teamwork and productivity?

Contrary to popular believe, efficient and effective meetings rarely start by jumping right into the meat of the matter.  That’s expecting everyone to have thinking, listening, and creative caps donned.

It’s rarely the case.

Here is inspiration from one of my most envigorating weekly meetings:  a Pilates class.

1. Define the Mindset

Tips from Pilates

Our teacher begins every class the same way.

“Breathe.  Stand straight.  Feet hip-width apart.  Shoulders above hips.  Tummy muscles squeezed tight. Let your chin drop towards the sternum and feel the stretch…”

Every time, I am caught by both surprise and familiarity.

Surprised because I’m slouching, am disconnected with my body, and don’t even realize it!

These regularly repeated words prime both my spirit and my body for stretching and muscle-building. It takes 10 seconds.

Positive Mindset in Meetings

How do you prime your team members for alignment during your meeting?  Model the behavior you seek.

For connectedness: Take 10 seconds to smile and look each person in the eye.

To tackle a challenge regarding the competition: Link your fingers and stretch your arms out in front of you.

To foster listening: Stay silent until the room quiets down.

2. Engage the Core Muscles

Tips from Pilates

“Tighten your abs. Squeeze the inside of your thighs …”

Engage the Core Muscles in Meetings

What will constitute a “firm core” for your meeting?  Let the group know the intellectual muscle you expect.

“Let’s put those creativity caps on!”

“We have a full agenda.  We want to hear from everyone who has something new and relevant to add.”

“Disagreement is OK. When we present our viewpoint, let’s stick to facts. I may request a moment for each of us to write our thoughts down before continuing the debate.”

3. Clarify Expectations

Tips from Pilates

“Feel the stretch in your lower back…”   It’s our cue for success; if we only feel the legs, something is out of whack.

Clarify Expectations with a Meeting Agenda

A shared written agenda helps keep the meeting on track.  It’s an agreed-upon tool to refocus.

“The decision we have to make today is ___________. You have a valid point and we still need to move ahead.”

Time indicators on your agenda adds yet another element of accountability.

“We had spent 15 minutes debating this issue.  Are we getting ready to decide or do we need to come back to this topic with additional information?  If so, who will do what?”

4. Maximize Results in Minimum Time

Tips from Pilates

“Let’s tone triceps.  For these push-ups, place your hands facing forward with arms next to your body.”

Standard push-ups build upper body strength.  This particularly positionning tones triceps.  Our goal is fit-looking arms to show off our summer wardrobe.  These forward-facing pushups get us the results easier and faster.

Stay Focused

Less is more.  Avoid distraction that generate lengthy, somewhat-related discussions.  Aim to define several concrete steps to move forward and assigning who does what.  That’s HUGE and motivating to all.

5. Self-Evaluate

Tips from Pilates

Between exercises, our Pilates instructor reminds us to align our body, to strengthen our core, and where to feel the stretch.

Oops!  I squeezed those glutes five minutes ago and then shifted my concentration to the movement.  In that short time span, I forget to keep those butt muscles engaged!

Invite Re-Alignment throughout the Meeting

In the same way, it’s helpful to return to meeting’s posture, purpose, and schedule to check in.

To avoid putting someone on the spot, invite self-evaluation.

“How are we doing on creativity/timeliness/mutual respect/?  What could you do to help us be more imaginative/productive/effective listeners?  Let’s continue…”

Read Turn Good Intentions to Great Teamwork for an example of self-evaluation during meetings.

 

6. Nourish your Brain

Tips from Pilates

Between exercises we rehydrate with water infused with lemon, ginger, or cucumber.

Serve Water during Meetings

Do you know that the brain contains 80% water?  Studies show that hydration contributes to memory and clear thinking.

Serving water also creates a pause in the meeting dynamic.  Try relieving tension between participants by offering a glass of water.  These nanoseconds allow the brain to receive nourishment AND to process emotions which boosts the ability to reason and rationally weigh alternatives.

The humble act of service demonstrates your care for the participants.  It’s a basic human need to seek belonging and significance.  A glass of water with a smile allows you to connect one-on-one with a person, even during a large meeting.

7. End with a Closing Routine

Tips from Pilates

“One last stretch before we go.”

Stretch the Value of the Meeting with One Word to Recap

“Let’s go around the table with a take-away from each of you.”

This is a gentle yet firm way of securing buy-in….at least on something.  Peer pressure encourages even the reticent participant to contribute.  It could be eye opening for them to realize the meeting held value to their colleagues.

If the closing comments fall below your hopes,consider how to prepare or manage your next meetings differently.  Take stock:

  • What went well?
  • When were the less productive moments?
  • How well did your respect the schedule (ie and respect the value of your participants’ time)?

Want to participate in a business meeting with these tips in action?  Contact me about organizing a conference in your workplace.

Apply to Life

These techniques work marvels with children around the kitchen table.  It’s the opportunity to address an elephant in the room and get the kids involved.

“I noticed that we have trouble getting out the door on time in the morning.”

Define the Mindset – Smile.  Reassure the children this is a time for solution-finding, not blaming.  “Around this table I won’t tell anyone to ‘Stop dragging your feet.’”

Clarify Expectations “Let’s come up with ideas to make mornings calm and joyful.  From our list we can choose one to try this week.”

Invite Self-Evaluation“Yes, your brother could ______.  What could YOU do?”

Stay Focused – When the kids squabble among each other, reframe.  “Hum. How is that pinching helping us get out the door on time? (Pause. Eye contact. Smile.) Another idea?”

Finish Strong“Let’s each say one phrase to share what you thought of our meeting.”

  • “I felt like a big person.”
  • “I know how to help.”
  • “We have great ideas!”

Cover photo from Unsplash

Boys in teamwork. What collaboration!

Turn Good Intentions into Great Teamwork

Who among you works with youth or young employees?  How do you help the next generation to transform good intentions into teamwork, collaboration, and positive results?

That’s what I had the opportunity to put to the test this past week when teaching a class in Introduction to Management to university students, youth with several months of corporate work experience.  The university called me in to pick up a class in the middle of their curriculum; I began with the topics of Motivation and Leadership.  How appropriate!

Personable and polite students entered the class with good intentions.  In theory, they were motivated.  In practice, they quickly lost focus by chatting with a colleague or scrolling on their mobile phone.  Bye bye, teamwork.

Professor colleagues lament the young generation’s lack of attention and most respond in either of two schools

  • to carry on whether the students are listening or not
  • to walk over to the students’ desk and close their computers for them

Motivation 3.0

My area of expertise is Motivation-in-the-Era-of-Internet which expounds that employees are most motivated when they find autonomy, mastery, and purpose in their work.  Ignoring students or treating them like a child lies contrary to this Motivation 3.0 approach.

“Management is about creating conditions for people to do their best work…And what science is revealing is that carrots and sticks can promote bad behavior and encourage short-term thinking at the expense of the long view.” – Dan Pink, from Drive

Additionally, my experience with Millennials confirms their search for authenticity and connection in relationships.  Neither of the above teaching/leadership styles convey either genuine interest in or an engagement with the students.

Here was my dilemma:  How to teach/lead and engage these students in a way that

  • ensures results (the material is covered qualitatively=
    AND SIMULTANEOUSLY
  • creates a sense of belonging and desire to contribute among the students?

In other words, how to help these Post Millennials transform their good intentions into positive teamwork?

Team-Generated Collaboration Guidelines

We used a tool that works wonders in my workshops: Co-Developed Group Guidelines

This tool helps both create and maintain a constructive work environment.

CREATE COLLABORATION

1. The first step entails putting the good intentions into writing.  Here is how.

Invite your group to share, “What can we each do to work together as a great team?”

Folk respond right away with, “To respect each other.”  And the list continues.

2. It’s helpful to break down vague or over-used words. 

  • “What does respect mean exactly?”
  • “What will it sound/look/feel like?”
  • “What is an example of lack of respect that we should avoid?”

3. Once the brainstorming complete, invite the group to prioritize three to five of these great team behaviors.

The process of making the list together brings the success-criteria to top of mind.  It’s like hearing the reminder to drink 1 liter of water a day.  We know these are helpful behaviors AND we benefit from remembering to do so.

The process of having built these teamwork criteria together builds belonging to the group and accountability.  “It’s the rules I made.  It’s normal that I should keep them.”

Here is our class’ list.Teamwork collaboration guidelines

MAINTAIN TEAMWORK

As humans, any rule is hard to follow, even the great ones we make ourselves!  We need help yet even well-intentioned positive reminders can sound like nagging.  Invite self-evaluation as an effective means of follow through.

Half-way through my class I invited our group to review our team ground rules.  “How are we doing? Thumbs up (good teamwork), side ways (OK job), or down (need improvement).”

In our class, thumbs were all over the place!  That’s an opportunity to address the elephant in the room.

“Well…it looks like some people think we are listening while other people talk, and others don’t.”

That’s where I appealed to everyone to think of one or two behaviors to change so that our listening improved.  Some students closed their computers on their own accord.  We reshuffled the break-out groups which had the effect of separating chattering partners.  People sat up straighter in their chairs…

And we smiled (!) and continued with class.

And for our next session on Communication and Teamwork, we’ll begin by reviewing those same co-developed ground rules and setting a personal goal to be 1 Great. Team.

How do you engage your young employees?  Please share in the comments.

Apply Teamwork Guidelines to Your Work

What is your challenge with teamwork?

  • People arrive late in meetings
  • Folk repeat what has already been said or done
  • Meetings have no agenda
  • Lack of trust

Try setting a new stage.  Instead of focusing on the challenges, brainstorm together about great teamwork and, TOGETHER, set yourselves some clear guidelines.

Apply Teamwork Guidelines to Your Life

Easter is this Sunday.  In France, it’s customary to celebrate over a looooooong meal with extended family.  You love the food, wine, and company.  The kids get bored à table for an eternity.

Try this activity “en famille.

“Sweethearts, what can we do to make the big family meal a great experience for everyone?”

Everyone can brainstorm:

  • “We could get up and play between courses”
  • “We could get up and help (!) between courses!!”
  • “We could have Easter Egg drawings and color them while the adults finish eating”
  • “We could make an Easter Egg hunt for the adults!!!”

Once the brainstorming juices have flown free, then select one or two options that’s acceptable to everyone. 🙂

Photo by Robert Collins on Unsplash

Respect

Give and Get Respect

Today’s Gift on the Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home advent calendar for parents

The Gift of Respect Downloadable
from SoSooper 

How to receive this gift?  Download them here.

Respect is one of those words that, since we all know what it means, we rarely define it…or describe what it sounds like in our home.

It’s relevance reaches from marching for rights for your daughter to speaking to her with honor.  Everyday.  Especially when you are (justifiably) MAD.

Today’s gift provides a more effective way of resolving the conflict than through a one-sided “discussion” that leaves both parent and child frustrated.

Gift of respect of kidsR.E.S.P.E.C.T. The Parents

Every parent has had a conversation like this at some time:

Parent making a request to a child: “Darling, could you set the table please?” (or clean up your room, or put the video games away, or….)

Child: No response.

Parent: “Sweetheart?!”

Child chooses one of the following responses:

  • Rolls eyes. Heaves a HEAVY SIGH.
    or
  • “You ALWAYS pick on me. Why don’t you ask my brother? 
    He played too…”
    or
  • “N.O.”

The parent, justifiably miffed and taking the child’s response personally, launches into a Thou-shalt-not-treat-thy-parent-with-disrespect Discourse. 

“Hello?!  This is your M.O.T.H.E.R. (or F.A.T.H.E.R.) you are talking to.  You DO NOT speak to me that way.  I do _____ for you and…blah blah blahAND also…more blah blah. Do you hear me?

You, the parent, feel like you did your job of correcting your child.  It was a necessary, one-sided “discussion.”

The kid might mumble an apology or look down. Until the next time.

In the Child’s Mind

Yet what is this child thinking about his parent?

Is this the person he wants to turn to when he feels insecure? 

When he knows he has made a mistake and is not quite sure what to do next?

How does he understand the meaning of respect? Does R.E.S.P.E.C.T. mean that children should speak politely to parents but mothers and fathers may rant and rave?

Does R.E.S.P.E.C.T. mean that children should speak politely to parents but not visa versa?! Click to Tweet

Ouch!

Today’s gift provides a more effective way of resolving the conflict than through a one-sided “discussion” that leaves both parent and child frustrated.

It’s a gift where parents accept to stop the Grand Discourse upon the child’s request. 

When will the child learn his lesson?!

In our Positive Discipline workshops, we role play these situations.  A parent takes on the role of the child and is placed in front of parents who go on and on with instructions.

“I stopped listening,” is the most common response.

Chances are your child turned his ears off too as soon as you rampaged into your speech.

There is a time to broach the issue.  When both parent and child are calm.  That’s when you can connect and ask questions that uncover your kid’s motivations, beliefs, and expectations.

Today’s gift keeps a positive connection with your child SO THAT you can effectively address the bothersome issue fully and effectively.

How The Gift of Respect works

 

Gift of Respect of parentsGift of respect of kids

The Gift of Respect includes

  • 3 “tickets” your children can use to ask you to stop lecturing.  You can bring up the subject at another time, just not now and without a “talking-at.”
    You’ll see on the Gift Certificates three phrases

    • Cool your jets
    • Chill Out
    • Gimme a Break
  • 2 “tickets” you can use with your kids for the to S.T.O.P.

Every month, the child may “play” each of the “tickets.”  Three times a month she can ask mother or father to please stop lecturing her.

Every month, the parent has two “stops” to play.  No more last nab in the ribs of the sibling, no more eye roll or SIGH!  An immediate halt to a stated misbehavior.

The Gift of Respect in Real Life

A mother was driving her son to a sports event and he was late…again.  Mom, legitimately annoyed, started telling her son how FRUSTRATING it was to have to go through the same process. Every. Week. Again. & Again.

From the back seat she hears a quiet, “Cool your jets.

Mom: “Honey, did you just say, ‘Cool your jets’ like ‘Mom, you are lecturing me.  Please stop.’”?

Child: “Yup.”

Mom: “Oh.”

Mother notices then that she is seething interiorly…and realizes she is more in the mind frame of blaming her child for his misbehavior than she is in finding a solution to avoid it in the future.

DIFFICULT AS IT IS, she refrains herself and remains silent.

Of course, this issue still weighs on her mind.  While her child is at sports practice, Mom realizes there must be an underlying reason to her son’s repeated tardiness.

That night, when tucking her son into bed, she sits by him and asks some questions

  • “Honey, I have noticed that you are often the last one to be ready to leave. Have you noticed that too?”
  • “What makes it difficult to be ready on time?”
  • “What could help you be ready earlier?”
  • “Which of these new ideas can you do on your own?”
  • “How could I help you?”

Tough & Powerful

This mother concluded, “I have a love-hate relationship with this Gift of Respect.

I hate it when my lack of self-control is exposed.  I hate it when I cannot have my way and just say what is on my mind.

And yet, I love it that my relationship with my children is transformed.  We engage in rich discussions about character qualities; we did not have those before.  I love it how the children seek me out to talk about sensitive issues like sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll, and friends, and parties…. I love not seeing those eye rolls anymore.  I love how the children share their love for me when I act pretty unpleasant.  Now they are the ones to tell me, ‘Can we talk about this later when we are both calm?’

We used the Gift of Respect for about two years.  After that, our way of managing misbehavior had changed so we did not need it anymore.”

Respect

Le Respect Donnant Donnant

Le Cadeau du Jour sur le calendrier de l’avent Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home

Les Tickets Super-Dose de Respect
de SoSooper

Comment recevoir un cadeau ? Faites le quizz amusant du Calendrier de l’Avent pour Parents aujourd’hui, et vous pourriez être le chanceux qui gagnera le tirage !

Le respect est un de ces mots dont tout le monde connaît la signification mais que l’on définit rarement ou l’assimile à quelque chose dans notre maison.

Le cadeau d’aujourd’hui offre un moyen plus efficace de résoudre le conflit que par un Grand Discours sur le respect qui laisse le parent et l’enfant frustrés.

Cadeau de respect de l'enfantR.E.S.P.E.C.T.ez les parents

Tous les parents ont déjà eu une conversation comme celle-ci :

Un parent demande à son enfant :”Chérie, est-ce que tu peux mettre la table s’il te plaît ?” (ou ranger ta chambre, ou arrêtez de jouer aux jeux vidéos…)

L’enfant : Pas de réponse

Le parent : “Mon coeur?!”

L’enfant choisi une des réponses suivantes :

  • Il fait les gros yeux. Il est avachi.
    ou
  • “ Tu me choisi toujours. Pourquoi tu ne demandes pas à mon frère ? Il a aussi joué…”
    ou
  • “N.O.N.”

Le parent, à juste titre fâché et prenant personnellement la réponse de l’enfant, se lance dans un discours où il lui dit : Tu ne dois pas manquer de respect à tes parents.

“Pardon?! C’est à ta M.A.M.A.N. (ou ton P.A.P.A.) à qui tu t’adresses. Tu ne peux pas me parler de cette façon. Je fais tout ça pour toi et … blabla … blabla… Est-ce que tu m’entends?”

Vous, le parent avez l’impression d’avoir fait votre travail en reprenant votre enfant. C’était une discussion nécessaire.

Votre enfant va peut-être marmonner des excuses ou alors baisser les yeux. Jusqu’à la prochaine fois.

Dans la tête de l’enfant

Que pense cet enfant de son parent ?

Est-ce que c’est vers cette personne qu’il se tournera quand il ne se sent pas en sécurité ?

Quand il sait qu’il a fait une erreur et qu’il ne sait pas quoi faire après ?

Comment comprend t-il le sens du mot respect ? Est-ce que le R.E.S.P.E.C.T. signifie que les enfants devrait parler poliment à leurs parents mais les mamans et les papas peuvent-ils toujours s’énerver contre eux ?

Aïe !

Le cadeau du jour offre un moyen plus efficace de résoudre les conflits que par une discussion qui laisse le parent et l’enfant frustrés.

C’est un cadeau où les parents acceptent d’arrêter le “grand discours” à la demande d’un enfant.

Quand est-ce que l’enfant va apprendre la leçon ?

Dans nos ateliers de Discipline Positive, nous jouons des jeux de rôle de ce genre de situations. Un parent prend le rôle de l’enfant et reçoit une tirade d’instructions.

“J’ai arrêté d’écouter” est la réponse la plus commune.

Il y a de fortes chances que votre enfant se bouche les oreilles avant même que vous ayez commencer votre discours.

Il est temps d’aborder le problème. Quand le parent et l’enfant sont calmes. C’est à ce moment que vous pouvez poser des questions qui révèlent des motivations, des croyances et des attentes de votre enfant.

Le cadeau du jour permet de maintenir un lien positif avec votre enfant afin que vous puissiez résoudre pleinement et efficacement le comportement désagréable.

 

Comment fonctionne les “Tickets de Respect” ?

Gift of Respect of parentsGift of respect of kids

Les “Tickets de Respect” incluent :

  • 3 “tickets” que vos enfants peuvent utiliser afin de vous demander d’arrêter vos “grand discours”. Vous pourriez aborder le sujet plus tard, mais pas maintenant et sans discoures.
    Sur ce document, vous trouverez trois phrases :

    • “C’est pas la fin du monde”
    • “J’ai besoin d’air “
    • “T’inquiète “
  • 2 “tickets” que vous pouvez utiliser avec vos enfants pour leur dire STOP N.E.T.

Chaque mois, l’enfant peut jouer avec chaque de ses “tickets”. Trois fois par mois, l’enfant peut demander à sa maman ou son papa d’arrêter de lui faire la leçon.

Chaque mois, le parent a deux “Stops” qu’il peut utiliser. Fini les chamailleries entre frères.  Plus de derniers mots. Stop !

Le Cadeau du Respect dans la Vrai Vie

Une maman conduisait son fils à un événement sportif et il était en retard… encore. La maman, légèrement agacée a commencé à dire à son fils comment c’était frustrant car c’était la même chose chaque semaine.  Encore et encore.

De l’arrière de la voiture, elle entend, “J’ai besoin d’air”.

Maman : “Chérie, est-ce que tu viens de dire ‘j’ai besoin d’air’ pour me demander de me calmer ?”

L’enfant : “Ouais”

Maman : “Oh”.

La maman remarque qu’elle boue de l’intérieur. Après tout, elle a raison; son fils est toujours en retard.

Et elle se rend compte de sa colère et qu’elle n’avait pas l’esprit d’aider son enfant à trouver une solution pour son retard.  Elle voulait lui donner une leçon!

Cela lui demande un GRAND effort, néanmoins elle se retient et n’aborde plus le sujet pour le reste du trajet.

Bien sûr, cette question pèse toujours sur sa conscience. Pendant que son enfant pratique son sport, elle y réfléchi et se rend compte qu’il doit y avoir une raison sous-jacente au retard répété de son fils.

Cette nuit, quand elle a mit son enfant au lit, elle s’assit à côté de lui et lui posa quelques questions.

  • Chérie, j’ai remarqué que tu es souvent en retard en ce moment. Est-ce que tu l’as remarqué aussi
  • Qu’est-ce qui te mets en retard ?
  • Qu’est-ce qu’il pourrait t’aider à être à l’heure ?
  • Laquelle de ces nouvelles idées peux-tu appliquer par toi-même ?
  • Comment est-ce que je pourrais t’aider ?

Difficile & Puissant

Cette maman a conclu par : “J’ai une relation amour – haine avec ce cadeau du respect.

Je déteste quand mon manque d’autorité est mis au grand jour. Je déteste quand je ne peux pas le faire à ma façon et juste dire ce que j’ai en tête.

Et pourtant, j’adore que ma relation avec mes enfants évolue. Nous partageons énormément, nous ne faisions pas ça avant. J’adore quand mes enfants essaye de me parler de sujets sensibles comme le sexe, la drogue, le rock n ‘roll, les amis et les fêtes…. J’adore la façon dont les enfants expriment leur amour pour moi même quand j’agis plutôt désagréablement. Maintenant, ce sont eux qui me disent : “Est-ce qu’on peut parler de ça plus tard quand nous serons tous les deux calmés ?”

Nous avons utilisé le cadeau du respect pendant environ deux ans. Après cela, notre façon de gérer les crises et les mauvaises conduites a totalement changé et aujourd’hui nous n’en n’avons plus besoin. ”

Photo de Renato Mora sur Unsplash

What signs are you looking for in your kids?

You and I find what we seek.

What if we’re looking for the wrong things?!

We sure looked hard for the right signs during the journey along the Camino Trail from Notre Dame in Paris to Chartres Cathedral.  Discover how this also relates to parenting.

 

Eight of us set out for this 100 km hike over five days.  We held high expectations…without really knowing what to expect.  Sounds a little like parenting too!

We did know what to look for: the blue and yellow symbol of a shell which led us to Chartres Cathedral.  Step. By. Step.

Chartre Cathedral and pilgrims
We made it…following the blue & yellow signs.

Following the Signs

We came across loads of other signs along the way too, including

Restaurants – Tourist attractions – Highways – Danger of Death (!) – Rain ahead (dark clouds in the sky) – …

Dampierre town, namesake
“Wrong” sign. Did they name the town for me?! (My family name is Dampierre)… Still miles to go to Chartres.

All of these indications were true and real.

Only some of them lead to the desired destination.

When it way my turn to head the group, I kept a close watch for the blue and yellow markers.  We had (barely) enough energy to get to our destination.  Getting lost or sidetracked were not options.

Follow the Yellow (and Blue) brick road.

 

Signs for Parents

What do you and I look for in our kids?

Do these indicators enable our children to have a wonderful life and make a living?

Are these the pointers that make parenting easier and more fun?

In my parenting classes I hear two general messages from parents:

  1. I want the kids to be happy
  2. I wish they behaved differently (!)

 

Parents Desire Signs for Happiness…

As we uncover these desires, parents agree that happy kids espouse positive attitudes and acquire social and emotional skills.

How do children learn these?  Like everything else.  Either they learn it right the first time or they have to re-learn.  And that often requires correction.  Parents in my coaching call this “policing” – (verb) the need to check that kids’ undesirable behavior is not being done! 

And it’s NO FUN.

 

…YET Mom & Dad are On-the-Lookout for Trouble

Much of family change management (a sophisticated term for parental discipline) is focused on fixing what’s broke.  We look for the problems and then solve them.

We look for problems!

What if WE LOOK FOR POTENTIAL STRENGTHS?!

It’s a revolutionary paradigm shift!

We begin to look for different signs.

 

Instead of focusing on the child's problems, why not seek out his potential strengths. Revolutionary paradigm shift. Click to Tweet
Check out these examples:

(This inclusive, strength-based approach is called Appreciative Inquiry and was developped by David Cooperrider at Case-Western University.  Here is a story-telling video by Jackie Kelm, author of Appreciative Living, which clearly describes the inspiring principle.  Appreciative Inquiry works in groups as large as the US Army and as intimate as your and my family.)

The Angry Child

Problem Sign = Trantrum

Potential Strength Sign = Calming Down

What helps her calm down?  Where is your daughter most calm?
When was the last time your son was able to overcome anger?  What happened that made this possible?

 

The Disrespectful Child

Problem Sign = Does not listen.  Parents repeat.  Repeat. REPEAT.

Potential Strength Sign = Showing Interest

When was your daughter passionate about something?  How was your exchange:  were you a know-it-all or was she discovering answers on her own?  Did you speak in statements or through questions?

 

The Whining Child

It’s the season of Thanksgiving.  During family reunions, when remembering folks with gratitude, whining is a Problem Sign!

Gratitude endears both the one being grateful and those who are appreciated.

 

Finding YOUR Child’s Potential Strength Signs

Can we help you find the Potential Strengths Signs in your children?

Parents often come to us when they’re discouraged.  The Problem Signs tend to be the most glaringly visible and it’s hard to see anything else.

It can even be a challenge to know which qualities are most important for YOUR family.

Let us know which of these qualities is most important for you to build up in your child

Which quality is most important to build in your child?

 

Trying to transmit all of these SIMULTANEOUSLY is a daunting task.  So break it down into do-able tasks. 🙂

That’s where SoSooper can help you to

  1. Identify the qualities you desire to transmit to your child
  2. Identify the signs that indicate you’re going that way (or not!)
  3. Create paths to intentionally PREVENT (vs. correct) getting side-tracked or feeling lost

 

Talk soon.

smiling teenager with parents

10 Skills Teens Need to Succeed

When your child leaves home, replacing the school book bag with the briefcase, what skills do you want him to master?

French boys off to school

Probably reading, writing, and arithmetic.

Yet when we ask this question in our Positive Discipline parenting classes, moms and dads don’t even mention the 3R’s.  Parents focus directly on the Soft Skills like

Confidence.

Search for excellence.

Tolerance.

Wise Decision-Making.

Where are the Teens with Skills to Thrive?

Employers agree these are the traits that lead to success.  They also lament that entry level students lack Soft-Skill-Savvy.

PayScale, the largest salary level database in the world, reports a major disconnect between what employers seek in their entry level students and what universities teach.  A whopping 50-55% of college graduates are either unemployed or underemployed!

The skills employers seek are the hardest to find as per the Employment Gap study by Millenial Branding & Experience, Inc.

Employable skills, where art thou?!

Students may have mastered Algebra and Molecular Biology, but they’re tottering in Teamwork and Self-Management.

Teens are concerned and so are their parents.  That’s why Harvard Business School alumni who are also parents listened in on Marie Schwartz, founder and CEO of TeenLife, as she presented the 10 Skills Teens Need to Succeed.  (The slide above is from her material)

Here is Schwartz’s list of Skills to Succeed:

  1. Drive/passion
  2. Independence/Self-Management
  3. Time-Management/Prioritization
  4. Interpersonal Skills
  5. Cultural Awareness
  6. Verbal & Written Communication
  7. Teamwork & Collaboration
  8. Critical Thinking/Problem-Solving
  9. Technical Know-How
  10. Grit/Determination

 

How will our children learn these skills to thrive?

The way you and I parent matters.

Even with the best intentions, we moms and dads can alienate our teens (and teach them to reject our values)…or we can connect with them and give ourselves a chance to keep training our kids in positive skills.

Our parental responses teach our kids.  What will they learn?

Teen lessons: “I better not get caught next time.” & “Am I REALLY capable?”

OR

smiling teenager with parents
Teen lessons: “I am loved even when I’m not perfect.” & “I’ll do my best to be worthy of their trust.”

 

I don’t have time to teach these skills!

Too much on your plate already?

It’s not a matter of “adding to your plate.” Try doing some of the same tasks DIFFERENTLY.

Here’s an example (and one day I will write 5 ways to Teach Teen Skills without Taking more Time)

    1. Build Confidence through a Household Chore
      The children are needed and the family counts on them. “Darling, I NEED my table setter to do his job BEFORE the beans burn!”
    2. Teach Respect & Humility through another Household Chore (!)
      It’s hard to treat Mom like the maid when the kids vacuum too!
    3. Practice Teamwork through…a Family Team Clean!!! (on the SoSooper App)
      Intentionally develop a culture of collaboration. “Family helps family. It’s what we do.”
    4. Encourage Love of Excellence & Self-Evaluation by Inspecting the Household Chore
      “An O.K. job of cleaning the sink is when there are no pink toothpaste smudges. A super clean sink has shiny chrome.  What quality job have you done?”
    5. Instill Self-Management by kindly and firmly insisting on Household Chore…
      “Sweetheart, we said you may play with you friends WHEN the laundry is folded. How is the laundry now?  (in the dryer) Then you know what to do.”

    (You guessed that I believe in inviting the children to participate in household tasks.)

    Transmitting life skills to kids requires parent passion and grit more than it requires money or even time.

    Transmitting life skills to kids requires parent passion and grit more than money or even time. Click to Tweet

    Where and how to start?

    That’s where parent coaching can come in handy

    • To identify the family-helping tasks that truly make life easier for the parents AND are age-appropriate for the kids
    • To share ways to on-board the children so that they feel engaged and want to participate
    • To get YOUR reminders remember to follow through the children
    • To learn tools to present your requests so that children listen
    • To follow through effectively and avoiding power struggles

    Drop us a line