Especially for you parents here on the channel, we got to come up with some alternatives to some of the negative discipline. 7 positive ways to discipline your child. I think we’ll start today with a discussion of basic behavioral psychology. I say that it’s basic. But I’m a psychologist. And it’s hard to get for the regular everyday person I think. So, let me take a stab at this Vicki and you can kind of clear it up for us. Okay, if I get it too complicated. Here’s the thing. there are 2 basic ways to change behavior. There’s reinforcement and there’s punishment. Okay. Now, sometimes punishment gets kind of a bad rap. We’re talking about discipline today. And just in terms of behavioral psychology, here’s the bottom line. Reinforcement increases behavior. So, if you want to see more of it, you reinforce it. Exactly. Punishment decreases a behavior. So, if you want to see less of it, use a punishment. Okay. Now, punishment I think has a bad rap, Vicki because we associated a lot of times with like corporal punishment. Or spanking or hitting. That’s not what we’re talking about here. Right. Punishment simply from a behavioral standpoint is something that decreases a behavior. Right. Okay. Now, let’s talk positive and negative. Okay. I’m the positivity guy. But that’s not we’re all about here. But think of it as plus and minus. Think of it as adding or subtracting. So, in a positive reinforcement, we’re adding something in a positive punishment. We’re adding something. But you remember you want to increase or decrease the behavior. So, positive reinforcement, you’re adding something to increase the behavior you want. Yes. Well, actually not always you want. Sometimes you do positive reinforcement you don’t even know it. But what we’re talking about and you get really clear about what you want, you’re adding something in order to increase a behavior. Yes. And your comment was so appropriate, Vicki. Because sometimes we don’t realize that we’re giving a positive reinforcement to a behavior and not even realizing it. A good example is attention. Right. You’ve heard that your kids will do things for attention? Yeah. Uh-huh. And it doesn’t matter if it’s your positive attention or negative attention. Oh, bad breath is better than no breath at all. Right. So, bring it on. So, keep that in mind for a minute. Positive means we’re adding something. Negative means we’re subtracting something. So, think of the math symbols. Positive, negative, adding, subtracting, right? And that will be important because what we’re all about in today’s episode is some alternative, some positive alternatives. Now, I’m going back to my definition of positive which is good, right? Yes. Some positive alternatives to spanking and yelling and some of the things that get us trapped as parents. Alright. So, with our basic understanding of behavioral psychology. Here’s number 1 of 7. Okay, it’s positive reinforcement. So, we’re going to add something in order to increase a behavior. What are we going to add? We’re going to add something they want. Right. This is rewarding them. So, you’re monitoring and trying to catch them being good, doing the right things. Fulfilling the request, whatever it is. And then you give them something as a reward. You’re adding something they like. Okay, great example. Let’s say that you notice your child pulling out their books and starting their homework without being asked. Whew! That’s what you wanted, right? So, you want to reinforce that. Yeah, we want to increase the behavior. So, we’re going to add something or reinforce. And it could be, just what you did. Out little woohoo! Yeah. Some positive attention. Give them an “Atta boy.” Or pat him on the back or “Thank you so much.” These are social reinforcers. But what if you have a little token thing going on already with your kids and they get to earn little tokens that they can add up toward some kind of a benefit later on? Well, give him a couple of extra tokens. You know, whatever that means in your particular family. But you’re going to reward that. That’s number 1. Great. So number 2, we’re going to talk about negative reinforcement. No, don’t get tripped up about, “Oh, it’s negative. We don’t want to do.” No, negative means subtract. Take it away. In order to increase the behavior because it’s a reinforcement. So, basically, what you’re going to do is take away something that they don’t want in the first place in order to make their life easier or happier. The best example is when kids do this to us. Okay, so what do you mean? When they’re begging. Begging. “Oh, please, please, please, please, please, please!” And then you give them what they want. And they take away the begging to reinforce you for what you just gave them. Ah, so kids are actually really good at using negative reinforcement. Yeah. But as a parent, what would be an example? Hmm… Let’s say that you are standing there, you know, the old classic version of mom standing there with her arms folded watching you, hands on the hips. Yes. Where she’s… So, do they like that kind of supervision? No. So, as soon as they start doing what it is you want them to do, you remove that. You take that away. That’s an example of a negative reinforcer. Or if they have some kind of a restriction that’s there, you release or remove the restriction. Yeah. So, another example, let’s say that you were going to require them to do an hour of chores every day after school. But because they came home and they got right on their homework, you say to them, “You know what, today you only have to do a half hour.” Yeah, negative reinforcement. You subtracted or took away something they didn’t want. The extra chores. To increase the behavior of doing your homework. Exactly. Number 3 is going to sound really negative. Because it’s negative punishment. That almost sounds sour to even come out of your mouth. I know, right? I’m going to get kicked right off the channel. But remember, punishment is to decrease the behavior. Yes and negative means subtract or take away. So, you’re going to take away something that they really would have preferred to keep. To encourage a decrease in a particular behavior. Example, let’s say your teenager comes home late. Okay. That probably doesn’t happen to you. But let’s just say that your teenager comes home late. You’re going to take away something they would rather keep in order to decrease the behavior of coming home late. So, you maybe take away access to the vehicle. Right. For the next day. Or you take away the privilege of being able to go out the next night. Yeah. We see this a lot maybe with kids who have a certain amount of screen time. And maybe you away 10 minutes of their screen time in order to decrease a behavior they were doing. A negative behavior. Negative punishment. You take away something to decrease the behavior. Okay now, we’re moving into number 4. Positive punishment. Which means good punishment, no. It means add something, that’s the positive. Punishment to decrease the behavior. So, you’re going to add something that they don’t want in order to decrease whatever the behavior was. Usually this is a penalty of some kind. “Oh, you did that so now you get this. I’m giving you this penalty or a fine.” This incidentally is where spanking comes in. Which we don’t advocate on this channel. Because spanking is so risky. Because a lot of parents do it in an anger. But the concept of spanking is a positive punishment. Right. The problem is that it gets out of control because parents aren’t… So, what are some better positive punishments we can talk about now? Well, the fine for example. I mentioned, I like to use fines because you’re giving them something that they really didn’t want to decrease a behavior. So, we did a video recently about helping teens to stop swearing. And I used this example, this mom that I was working with. Told her teenage sons who were just potty mouth. I mean, they were popping off in the car and everything. She finally said, “Look guys. I’m not going to nag you about your swearing. I’ve decided that I will tolerate it. I’ll put up with it for only $1 per word. That’s all. You swear as much as you can afford.” Now, this is an example of a positive punishment. Right. Because she’s giving them a fine, something they don’t want, to decrease the swearing. The behavior. Positive punishment. Give them something they don’t want. Now we can talk in other videos about how to enforce that fine. Those are hard. You know these are hard ones. They’re hard ones to follow through. But you do have to… Well, it’s about control isn’t it? Right. Because if you don’t feel that you control something, you’re more likely to get a little emotionally tipped over. The thing is as soon as parents get emotionally tipped over. If you yell, for example. You’ve just sent a signal to your child that you are out of control. Yeah. And they’re like, “Oh, okay. So, I’ve got the control now .” And suddenly they’re thinking, without even knowing, they’re thinking they’re doing some negative reinforcement going on. Right. So, they’re, they’re training us, too. Alright. Number 5 is actually a hybrid of some of what we’ve already talked about. I call it response cost. Where we’re going to combine a reinforcer to increase a behavior and a Punisher to decrease the behavior. Here’s an example of what I mean, let’s say that you want the kids to sit quietly while you’re at the wedding reception. Okay. Or church, or the meeting that, you know, a place where you want the kids… Might be in the waiting room of the doctor’s office. Something limited. You take a ziplock bag. The kind you can see through. You write your child’s name with a marker on the outside of the bag. Because then they have a little bit of ownership. Then you put ten things into the bag. Things they want. Yeah. Because this is the reinforcer. Something that they want that you’re going to give to them. Positive reinforcer. Okay, that’s in the bag. Now, you set it up like this. “At the end of our appointment today, when we leave Dr. Paul’s office, you get to have all of these that are left.” Yeah. Okay, you get everything that’s left. Now, they’re looking at the bag in there like, “Huh?” They’re interested, right? Talk to me here. Now, between now and when we leave Dr. Paul’s office. Any time you’re up jumping around or your bums not on the seat or however you want to define it. Anytime you’re causing this disruption and make sure that you’re clear about that. Right. Or it could be a specific thing like hitting their sister, okay? “If I see you hit your sister, that’ okay. I’ll forgive you. It’s going to cost you one of these.” And so, during the appointment, if they’re, you know, hitting their sister, if they’re up jumping around or whatever it is you specified. You simply reach in the bag. Take one of those out that goes into your pocket. Reseal the bag. And you’re not even giving it a lot of attention. No. Don’t have to. Yeah. Yeah. Because then after the appointment, you follow through on your promise. You give them the bag. They get everything that’s left. Mm-hmm. That’s called response cost. It’s a cost for the response that they chose to have. And it teaches them to start monitoring their own behavior better. So, number 6. Be an example of calm voice, calm face, calm words. Yes. Keep this an example of what you want that to look like. Right. You know, I’ve I’ve noticed as a mom, there are times I would realize that I was walking around like this. My eyebrows. You know, and I’d like, “Oh”, just trying to relax your face and bring on a pleasant attitude. Because I realized that that it was affecting the way the children were acting. What you do matters. How you show up is powerful. And sometimes kids aren’t going to hear what you’re saying. Because what you’re doing or what you’re presenting or projecting is speaking so loud. So, number 7. Work the consequence in a positive way. Now, this means instead of saying, “If you don’t do X-Y-Z, you’re going to be in trouble. This is going to happen.” But rather say when you do this, “We will do that.” You know. So, when you have picked up your room, we will go get our ice cream. Instead of saying, “If you don’t pick up your room, you’re not going to get your ice cream.” There’s a real different feel to that. 2 negative statements? Yeah. And now we are using the word negative as bad. No. Frame it positively. It feels so different. “If you don’t do that then you can’t do this.” Okay, well how’s that feel? How does that feel to you? If you don’t finish watching this video, then you can’t come back tomorrow?” Okay, that’s a dumb example. But just notice how that feels as opposed to “When you finish cleaning your room, we’ll go out for ice cream.” Yeah. Or everyone who accomplishes this task gets to participate in that activity. You know, use that a school a lot. Everyone who is at their desk gets X-Y-Z or something. Everyone who’s raising their hands will be in a positive way. Right. That’s just 7. There’s more. Share some of your comments down below. We’ll have a conversation about this. There’s a lot of positive possibilities here. I got into a little bit of psychology there. Hopefully when you tracked all of that. We’ve got some other tools and resources for you especially the Parenting Power-Up. You get to have me and Vicky on your private parenting team. Check it out right over here.