One of the MOST annoying things I've heard throughout my parenting journey is, "It worked for us whenever we were growing up!" I must admit, I've been guilty of sharing this sentiment with countless others, but the truth of the matter is such a belief system is ineffective, disengaged and lacks empathy.
I am 35 years old, so for me to believe that what worked for my generation of Pac Man, walkmans and Jem and the Holograms will work for my daughters' generation of Netflix, tablets and iTunes is simply absurd!
This wake up call inspired me to take massive action, both as a parent AND as the CEO of Mom Talk with Denise LaRosa, LLC. Here are 5 reasons why I became a Certified Positive Discipline Parent Educator:
The old school way was NOT working
Don't get me wrong! There are some parenting principles that transcend generations. Perhaps the most profound discovery I've made as a parent is that it's not the traditional morals and values that need to change; it's the delivery of those morals and values that may need a new approach.
Let's face it; this parenting gig does NOT come with a manual. It's only natural for us to revert to what we know. And what we know is what we experienced growing up whether we enjoyed it or not. I tried using some old school tactics, expecting my girls to melt to their knees like I did as a child. You can imagine my shock and horror as my girls responded with flat out "NO!" or backtalk!
Discovering Positive Discipline was a breath of fresh air! I was willing to try anything that was safe and sane, and became pleasantly surprised at the results.
I want my kids to learn not just behave
Our ultimate goal as parents is for our children to become independent and thrive. We instill all the love, morals and values we can in them and then set our birds free to fly out into the world. I didn't want my girls "behaving" out of fear of me, rather I want my girls to make good choices because they want to do what's right. The principles of Positive Discipline set our children up to becoming "responsible, respectful and resourceful members of their communities."
I wanted to save my sanity - NO MOM GUILT!
Yelling is NOT fun folks! I was voted Friendliest Girl in high school, Miss Congeniality in pageants and was even chosen by my classmates to be a peer mediator for our school's conflict resolution program. Then I became a mom and turned into a monster. You think I'm being too hard on myself? Well, let's put it this way. One evening I was running around the house, cleaning, doing laundry, etc. I noticed my girls kept running and screaming every time we crossed paths. Next thing I knew, I overheard them saying, "Let's run from the monster!" YIKES!
I was tired of losing my voice, feeling the mom guilt and losing my connection with my precious girls. I wanted us to enjoy each other, not be miserable together! Positive Discipline "teaches important social and life skills in a manner that is deeply respectful and encouraging for both children and adults." My relationship and connection with my daughters is stronger because of the Positive Discipline foundation we've established.
I wanted to be a teacher NOT a villan
I'm a teacher by trade, but the most important job I will ever have in my lifetime is that of being a mother. The most basic definition of teach is "to show or explain to (someone) how to do something." I wasn't showing my children anything other than how to lose your cool.
I knew it was imperative that I set an example and come from a place of calm whenever dealing with whatever parenting challenges showed up at any given moment. Then it was my job to teach and guide my children in the midst of a challenge. We cannot expect our children to know something we've never taught them or modeled for them. Besides, I'd be lying to you if I said being referred to as a monster by my children didn't sting a little bit.
I wanted to help other moms & families
I started my blog over 3 years ago out of a need to express my joys and challenges in motherhood. I needed an outlet and writing has always been my go-to for that. Months later, I started a podcast out of a need to help mothers know and feel that they are not alone in their journey. I too was overwhelmed, frustrated, lonely and confused (among many other emotions). Podcasts were a place of solace for me and I wanted to provide that same peace and encouragement for other mothers.
I never imagined my means of expressing myself and connecting with other moms would reach mothers all around the world! So many of you come to me for advice and comfort. I knew that to be the best "mom friend" I could be for YOU, I needed to come from a place of experience AND knowledge. As always, whenever I experience something that has helped my family, I share it with all of you. Positive Discipline is perhaps THE most effective parenting resource for my family! Now, I can help you establish these principles in your home through LIVE workshops, podcast episodes, blog posts and upcoming books/online resources! Let's do this mommy thing TOGETHER!
Live in the Pittsburgh area??? Join me at my upcoming Intro to Positive Discipline LIVE workshop! Click HERE for more info!
Don't live in the Pittsburgh area??? No worries! Stay connected because I'll be connecting you with some online resources and traveling with my LIVE workshops in he near future!
What parenting practices work for you? Please share in the comments below! I'd love to hear from you. :)
Hugs & Love!