Praise be-gone

Praise from your parents is so sweet and tempting. After almost two years of our cutting waaaay back, our girls still crave it. Remember to resist! (See why.)

Ellen: “Mom, do you like it?”

Me: “That yellow there makes it look like it’s glowing!”

Ellen: “Yeah, but do you think it’s pretty?”

Me: “How did you decide which colors to use?”

Ellen: “Mom! Is it pretty?!”

Me: “Are you happy with it?”

Ellen: “Ugh! I just want to know what you think!”

Ellen, age 10

Me: “Who cares?”

Ellen: “I do!”

Me: “I know, but I’m supposed to help you figure out what you think, not what I think.”

Ellen: “But I’m just curious! I just want to know what you think!”

Me: “I know you do. But it really doesn’t matter what I think.”

Ellen: frown

Me: smile

ps Recently I went skiing with Charlotte and carefully avoided the old stand-bys of “Good job!” and “Nice going!” etc. Instead, I consciously made simple observations to let her know that I was paying attention.

At family meeting she said, “I appreciate Mom for saying good things like, ‘Every time you fell down, you got right back up and kept going.’”

Make the shift, no matter how much they cry foul. It really does work.

Explore posts in the same categories: Week 9: Family Meetings, Weeks following: Miscellaneous

6 Comments on “Praise be-gone”

  1. KJ Says:

    It really is hard!

  2. sally Says:

    Wow. That mirrors what happens now and again in our house around food choices, as that used to be one of my biggest buttons. Thanks for sharing, as always!

  3. flockmother Says:

    It gets easier, I promise! Any doubts I have fall away when I notice the value for myself of looking inside for validation. (Like when the girls tell me my outfit looks weird, I can just say, “Well, *I* like it, so it works for me!”)

  4. Vicki Says:

    Thanks Catha, for keeping us all up to date with the growth and changes happening in your home and with your kids.

  5. jason Says:

    Have you read “Siblings Without Rivalry” or any of their other books? This sounds like one of the chapters out of their book. Love it!

    • flockmother Says:

      I read that book cover to cover no less than three times. L-o-v-e-d it. Was my bible up until I found this program (which takes that philosophy even further.)


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