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          Parenting

          Five Core Steps to Good Parenting

          October 15, 2002

          Wondering if there is anything else you can do as a parent? Dr. Phil outlines five steps that can help bring you and your child closer together:

          1. Plug In
          Make a conscious decision to plug into your kid’s world. You can’t make assumptions about the critical choices that children have to make today because the world they are living in is different from the one you grew up in.

          2. Spread the Word

          When you talk to your children you’ve got to spread out your logic so that they can see why you’re saying what you’re saying. Research shows us that the amount of trouble kids get into is inversely proportional to the number of words spoken in the home. What that means is, the less you talk at home, the more trouble they get in outside the home.

          3. Talk About Things That Don’t Matter
          How do you ever expect to talk to them about things that do matter if you haven’t practiced by talking about things that don’t?

          4. Remember, You’re the Parent
          Children have lots of friends who tell them what they want to hear. They don’t need you to be another friend. They need you to be an authority figure who lets them know where the boundaries of acceptable behavior are. Trying to be his or her friend will only undermine your authority as a parent and come back to bite you.

          5. Allow Them A Sense of Mastery

          You have to put your kids in a world where they feel a sense of mastery over their own environment. It’s important that they don’t feel they’re subject to arbitrary guidance or haphazard decisions.

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