Gratitude parts 7 & 8: naughties and sneaky treats

james collage 5

This one.  He has been testing me lately.  Whenever he is more naughty for longer stretches I realize it’s aaaaallllways because I am forgetting to praise him more for the things he does great than point out the things he does wrong.  Isn’t there like a 5-1 ratio of positives to negatives you’re supposed to do?  Well sometimes I totally mess that up.  Usually when I am focussing more on things I want to do than letting him lead the creativity.  Yesterday was the last day of a long stretch of the naughties because I finally realized the kid just wanted to be told he’s awesome!  And since he totally is, it was a good thing I had that realization.  So it’s not that he’s naughty, really.  It’s that I’m naughty.

james collage 4

Enter: Sneaky Treats.  Oh, how I love Sneaky Treats!  Let me explain.  When I’m actually being a good mom and remembering to really focus on positive reinforcements, James and I have this system.  I have a big bag of tiny treats (rees’s pieces, chocolate chips, m&m’s or anything like that) on hand.  The first day I basically praise him for any tiny little thing he does positively and yell, “Sneaky Treat!” and I give him one of the treats.  I really try to make a huge deal about it and he just gets so excited.  The next day I still focus on praising him just as much but only give him Sneaky Treats every few positive reinforcements, and the next day is a little less, and so on and so forth.  Not only does his behavior astronomically improve but I find so much more fulfillment in motherhood, too.  Not that motherhood isn’t fulfilling if you have a difficult child, it’s just that this system makes me focus on James and his personality more, which is more fulfilling.  It’s just another way to be a proactive parent, which is always fulfilling.  For yesterday and today, I am grateful for my little Naughty who is so awesome and for Sneaky Treats that help him remember he’s awesome.

james collage 2

Gratitude Posts Summary:

1. my family // 2. words // 3. outside // 4. compartmentalizing // 5. drunk babies // 6. black charcoal // 7. naughties // 8. sneaky treats

james collage 1

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