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The Advantages of Parental Discipline

by Barbie Carpenter , studioD

As a parent, you serve many roles. You are the caregiver and the nurturer, and you want to be the friend. From time to time, however, you also have to be the disciplinarian, teaching your children right from wrong and helping guide them toward appropriate behaviors and smart decisions. Understanding why discipline is important for your children will help you implement effective disciplinary techniques that make for happy and well-behaved children.

Teaching Responsibility

Discipline teaches your children to be responsible for their actions. A common form of discipline is teaching children to experience the consequences of their decisions. If you warn your daughter that failing to pick up her toys will result in loss of dessert, for example, and she does not pick up her toys, she will experience the consequences of her decision. When you discipline children using this consequences model, you help them learn how to be responsible for their actions and, thus, control the consequences they experience.

Instilling Appropriate Behavior

Discipline teaches your children proper behavior in a variety of circumstances. When you discipline your child for poor behavior, he learns about what behavior is acceptable. According to an article in the journal Paediatrics and Child Health, discipline can foster appropriate behavior in children, teaching them how to interact with others, when to postpone pleasure and how to tolerate discomfort. Thus, discipline can help you create better-behaved children who are respectful of others.

Establishing Self-discipline

Effective disciplinary techniques can minimize your role as the disciplinarian in the future. As your child learns what behaviors, actions and words are acceptable and unacceptable, she will acquire self-discipline skills. After learning of the negative consequences of bad behavior, your child may avoid that behavior in the future to avoid punishment. Thus, parental discipline can foster healthy self-discipline in children, which can improve their behavior.

Building Confidence

Positive discipline can build your child's confidence as well. Well-disciplined children often display appropriate behaviors and make smart decisions in difficult situations. Strong decision-making abilities and appropriate behavior can help build your child's confidence. As the Purdue Extension website explains, one of the goals of discipline is to raise confident and responsible children, so your discipline can positively impact your child's confidence for the long term.

About the Author

Barbie Carpenter worked as a technical writer and editor in the defense industry for six years. She also served as a newspaper feature page editor and nationally syndicated columnist for the Hearst Corp. Carpenter holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from the University of Florida and a graduate certificate in professional writing from the University of Central Florida.

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