Me and My "Guys"

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Energy Drain

This behavior management technique is from Love and Logic. I tried it the other day and it worked really well.

Andrew had been whining for a few days...something he's picked up lately...and I was getting into a bad pattern of getting frustrated, telling him to stop over and over and throwing my hands up in the air. You know...all the less-effective parenting techniques that we all know DON'T WORK. I have plenty of excuses for my less-effective parenting, but I knew it had to change.

So, I started re-reading Love and Logic Magic For Early Childhood.

I re-implemented the techniques and fine-tuned my skills, but the energy drain was new.

When Andrew started whining, I told him, "When you whine, it drains my energy (100% true). What are you going to do to put it back?"

His response? Just as they said it would be: (Insert whining voice here): "But I don't know how to put it back."

Me: "Do you want some suggestions?"

Andy: "Yes."

I then listed off three chores that he could do that would help "put energy back in me".

It worked. No more whining. And I had a lot of energy back in me. No Joke.

That day.

A couple of days later, it started again and we repeated the same conversation.

This time the chore he chose was to fold his blanket.

He didn't know how, so there was a fair amount of whining and crying when I wouldn't help him. Then I asked if he wanted some help. I laid the blanket down on the floor and then I sat on the couch. I coached him through it and then he figured the rest out on his own. He was so proud of himself when he was done. We had one more energy drain moment a little while later, when he chose to sweep the floor, and none since.

He has been trying very hard to remember to use a non-whiny voice when talking to me and it's obvious.

I love Love and Logic.

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