Use Your Thinking Hats

using your thinking hats

Some women get rocks set into precious metals for anniversaries, birthdays or Christmas. I get books. Over thirty years ago, my husband presented me with a jewel of a book for Christmas. I’ve used this gift to teach thinking skills to children and adults. The title? Six Thinking Hats by Edward De Bono. De Bono, […]


Sincere Praise Can Make A Difference

sincere praise can make a difference

One of the formative experiences of my early twenties was taking the Dale Carnegie Course in Public Speaking and Human Relations. Each class we focused on a tenet of Carnegie’s philosophy, one of which is to give sincere, honest appreciation. But giving honest and sincere appreciation can be a difficult skill to master. Some compliments […]


The Myth Of Sharing

myth of sharing

Parents, picture this scene: Your folks stop by to visit with two people you don’t know, but are close to your age. Your dad says, “Give me your car keys, please. John saw your new car and he wants to take it for a spin. I know you’d want to share. Oh, and Sue wants […]


See It In Your Child Video: Meeting The Goal Of Withdrawal

meeting the goal of withdrawal

In the previous four articles in this series, we’ve considered a child’s need to belong, and how a child’s behavior is directed towards getting this emotional connection of belonging. To feel like they belong, children’s behavior is driven by four unconscious goals: contact, power, protection and withdrawal. Now, let’s consider how we can help our […]


Some Alternatives to Saying “No”

alternatives to saying no

There are some days in February that seem as if all we do as parents is say “no”. “No, Susan can’t spend the night. Your brother has the flu.” “No, you cannot go bike riding right now. It’s dark.” “No, we can’t go to the mall. It’s supposed to start snowing soon.” Bad weather, illnesses, […]


See It In Your Child Video: The Child’s Need To Belong

the child's need to belong

We all need to feel like we belong. Children’s behavior is directed towards getting the emotional connection of belonging. Watch this video to learn about four basic, yet unconscious, goals that drive our children’s behavior. You’ll learn how these goals, when met, make for a child who is happy, cooperative, self-motivated and self-aware. Download the accompanying […]


Using Words To Encourage

words encourage

As young parents, my husband and I took a video-based parenting course called “Active Parenting” developed by Michael H. Popkin, Ph.D. Impressed with all the valuable information I was able to put to immediate use, I became an Active Parenting instructor for several years. One of the many “gems” from the course was writing “letters […]


Avoiding Power Struggles

avoiding power struggles

“You can’t make me!” yells our darling child. Instantly our breathing quickens, our heart rate elevates, our blood pressure rises and a throb starts at the temples. At times we feel like we “have to” make our children do some things against their will. Brush their teeth. Take a bath. Get dressed. Take their medicine. […]


Making Lemonade Out Of Lemons

making lemonade out of lemons

The problem with problems is that wherever you go, there they are. Problems have a shadowing type of effect. They follow you around until you get them into the light of full day. Everyone has problems or bad experiences. One of the hard lessons I had to learn is that it didn’t matter how good […]


Just Say No!

just say no

Probably the hardest word for us to learn as parents is ‘no’. Children wouldn’t be children if they didn’t test the boundaries, and when we say no, our children are determined to find a way to get to yes. There are many strategies they use to try to get to yes: complaining that we aren’t […]