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DOCTOR, TEACH ME TO PARENT
62 Lessons in Intentional Parenting
By ALLAN G. HEDBERG
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2013ALLAN G. HEDBERG, Ph. D.
All rights reserved.
ASSESSING MY PARENTING AND CHILD MANAGEMENT SKILLS
Below are 10 questions by which to assess your parenting skills and your child management skills in the home. Answer each question using the 5 point scale noted below. When finished, add up the total points. The higher the score the better. The lower the score, the more a professional counselor needs to be consulted. Look at the individual items on which you gave yourself a low score. Commit to improve these areas of your parenting. Seek help in knowing how to make the needed improvements.
(1) Never; (2) Sometimes; (3) About half the time; (4) Usually; (5) Always
1. After you have told your children (child) to do something, do you follow through to check to see if it was done so you can reward the child properly if the action was undertaken as you requested? __________
2. Do you involve your children (child) in the making of rules for the home for all to follow?
3. When trying to instill new behavior patterns, do you make liberal use of tangible and verbal rewards each time the new or requested behavior is carried out? __________
4. When correcting your children (child) do you explain what was wrong or undesirable and then explain what they should do better or differently the next time the situation occurs? __________
5. Do you clearly explain what you expect of your children (child) in a given situation and then follow through by monitoring if the expectation was met and give appropriate feedback to the children (child)? __________
6. Do you listen actively and carefully to your children (child) as they express their feelings so they know they were heard and that the essence of their feelings was understood and felt? __________
7. Do you deal with your children's (child's) social and academic behavior problems quickly and by taking an active role in the resolution to the problem(s)? __________
8. Are you consistent in what you expect of your children (child) from day to day and how you handle their behavioral choices from day to day? __________
9. Do you expect and encourage family unity, family priority, and family togetherness in events, activities and lifestyle in the home and in all areas of family life? __________
10. When a serious problem arises in the home, involving the children (child), do you quickly consult a professional counselor as a family? __________
Total score __________ (40 + is very good; 30+ is fairly good; 20+ is marginal and improvement is needed; 10+ is poor and much improvement is needed)
What are the three or four items you need to improve over this next month? __________ Do you have a game plan to bring about improvement?
ARE MY INTENTIONAL PARENTING OBJECTIVES IN PLACE?
Parenting is intentional if a parent has clearly defined objectives for the family and strives to reach them through the daily process of family life. Of course, a parent cannot control all the factors that influences a child, but can retain the primary focus of a child's attention and interpersonal learning.
Below are six objectives parents can strive to instill within their children to maximize the chance of being family of interpersonal attractiveness. Such a family will be attractive, influential, and intentional in their interpersonal and personal lives.
Am I ready to approach parenting with the goal to behave as a parent in accordance with the following components? Give yourself a score from 1 (low) to 5 (high) on each item.
COMPONENTS OF AN INTENTIONAL FAMILY
1. Encouragers: People are attracted to those who enhance their self-esteem. Intentional parents aim to enhance their children's self-esteem and teach their children how to help others have positive self-esteem. __________
2. Facilitators: People are attracted to those who help them define and reach their goals. Intentional parents aim to help their children clearly define life goals and to live in such a way that the goals will be attained.
3. Builders: People are attracted to those who make them feel important. Intentional parents aim to make their children feel important and help them make others also feel important. __________
4. Reinforces: People are attracted to those who express positive regard and approval and make them feel affirmed for who they are and what they have done. Intentional parents aim to affirm their children for who they are and whenever they have done something positive and of value. They also teach their children to do likewise with their peers and family members. __________
5. Helpers: People are attracted to those who help reduce the levels of anxiety, fear, pain, and the work load with which they live. Intentional parents aim to minimize the emotional stress in the lives of their children and also teach them to help others to reduce their emotional stress and work load. __________
6. Companions: People are attractive to those who increase their exposure to positive events and experiences in their daily lives. Intentional parents aim to provide positive experience for their children and teach them to help others have positive events and experiences in their lives. __________
Plan to improve your parenting on all items scored 3 or below. Seek professional consultation as necessary. The goal is to become more intentional in the raising of the children.
To best assess your parenting skills and approach, it is necessary to take an inventory of the parenting history in your home as a child. It is best to look into your parents parenting style and your exposure to your parents, both good and bad, over the years of your life. It is important to examine the traumas and hurts that you received from your parents and other parental figures in your early life.
Take the inventory below and reflect on how these experiences have made you a good parent or less than adequate parent. As a married couple, complete this form separately and then discuss your answers. Come to terms with areas of differences. You need to be on the same page.
The remainder of the book will help you improve your parenting skills, attitudes and style. Both parents will need to learn new skills and sharpen your style of parenting to be more consistent and effective in the future. Some areas will need more sharpening than others.
If you have some "unfinished" business with your parents from childhood, this would be a good time to resolve such matters as you assume your rightful role as an effective parent yourself. Seek the consul of a psychologist as needed.
MY FAMILY'S HISTORY
1. What positive parenting skills did you learn from your father?
2. What positive parenting skills did you learn from you mother?
3. Describe the positive communication patterns that took place in your home.
4. Name 3-5 positive events that took place on regular basis in your home.
5. How did your parents resolve interpersonal conflicts in a constructive manner?
6. How did you benefit from your parents guidance about school and education? Activities outside of school? Sports? Music? Other?
7. How are you trying to be like your mother as a parent?
8. How are you trying to be like your father as a parent?
9. How are you determined to be different from your parents as you parent your children?
10. How were you encouraged to set goals and work to
Excerpted from DOCTOR, TEACH ME TO PARENT by ALLAN G. HEDBERG. Copyright © 2013 by ALLAN G. HEDBERG, Ph. D.. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse.
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