When correcting behavior with young children, clearly state the action that should be “put off,” give a clear explanation for the reason, and follow that by offering a replacement action that may be “put on” in its place. Be age-appropriate. Be kind. Get down on the child’s level and establish eye-contact. Be consistent. Be patient. Be gentle in your tone. Be willing to enforce the rules with negative consequences or discipline when disobeyed. But, strive to help the child see the blessing in obedience and the reason behind the rule (i.e. rules are not arbitrary). There is no need to go into lengthy discourses or overly persuasive speeches in an effort to coarse a child into compliance. Likewise, there is no need to threaten, bribe, or manipulate a child to obey. It’s simply a matter of: (1) clearly stating the action that you expect the child to stop doing, (2) instructing/correcting the child’s thinking by stating your reason, and (3) providing a more positive and constructive alternate activity/action for the child to do instead. Then, when necessary, consistently following up with discipline if the child should choose to disobey.
Let's see how the Lord will change my relationship with my girls as I try to train them and raise them in a biblical way that honors God...and doing it God's way rather than mine! Please pray for us.