If you break it down, there are really only three rules for living:
*Take care of yourself
*Take care of others
*Take care of your environment (the things around you)
Any transgression can fall into one of these three rules.
Your child is grabbing the cat’s tail? No- because we take care of others.
Your child is throwing a toy? No- because we take care of our things.
Your child refuses to brush their teeth? No- because we take care of ourselves.
These work for adults too and as I remind my children, it is a good self reminder to treat myself with respect, to be good to my husband and children, and to be good to my world by remembering my reusable bags.
It is a consistent and gentle way to remind children about behavior without nagging. You can also reinforce this by noticing ways that the family is following those rules. An easy one is “Mom is working right now to help take care of the family”. But other ones that are equally as effective are “Dad is making breakfast and taking such good care of us!” or “Thanks for feeding the dog, that is taking good care of Rover” or “We don’t eat food in the living room because we want to take good care of our house.”
It honestly doesn’t get old like other more trite behavior modifiers and I really appreciate it when my husband gushes “Mama takes such good care of all of us!”
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