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10 Ways To Guide Children - Without Discipline - Guest Blogger

Posted Apr 07 2011 3:19pm
Dr. Laura has a wonderful blog at Aha! Parenting . I love her site and am subscribed to receive all of her blogs. Some of the great posts that I have enjoyed in the past include " There's an Angel on Your Shoulder ", " You Have the Most Important Job in the World ", and " Holding Your Child Accountable Without Punishment ".


As both a mom and a Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Laura Markham sounds two clear themes in her advice to parents.  The first is that when we feel good, we're better parents.  Quite simply, we can only give what we have inside. That's why her daily parenting inspiration emails are about how to take better care of ourselves and manage our own emotions.
Her other theme is that parenting effectively always depends on our connection to our kids. Without that connection, we have little influence ("My kids won't listen!") and, frankly, parenting becomes an exhausting, thankless task.

Deepening our connection with our kids and keeping it strong as they grow is the work of parenting.  Of course kids need guidance, but that only sticks if the connection is there to support our teaching. Dr. Markham definitely encompasses, through her parent-teaching, the ideals and principles of a Conscious Parent intent on encouraging a Conscious Family unit.
""The reason a child will act unkindly or cause damage is always innocent. Sometimes she is playful and free spirited, and other times, when aggressive or angry she is unhappy or confused. The more disturbing the behaviour, the more the child is in pain and in need of your love and understanding. In other words, there is no such thing as bad behaviour in children. Instead there is a child who is doing the best she can and we don’t understand her.” – Naomi Aldort

I talk to parents about their children all day, every day.  Parents are often shocked when they hear that I don’t believe in most of what we think of as discipline (spankings, consequences, timeouts) because it keeps kids from becoming responsible, self-disciplined people.  “How will my child learn how to behave?” they ask. My answer is that children learn what they live...."
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