Ep #22: How to Set Rules You Actually Stick To

Real World Peaceful Parenting with Lisa Smith | How to Set Rules You Actually Stick To

Real World Peaceful Parenting with Lisa Smith | How to Set Rules You Actually Stick To

Do you have rules in your family? Are they clearly defined and easy to articulate? Can you explain why and where they come from? Rules are so important when it comes to cooperation with our children, and they help us a lot, even if we’re not always able to follow them.

In my own family, we have few rules, but those we have are based upon our family values. Rules born from family values are the easiest to enforce from a calm and loving place, and they help our kids feel safe and loved.

Tune in this week to hear why having rules is so important and how I learned the importance of them in my own family. If you are struggling to be consistent with the rules you’re setting, this episode will help you create cooperation and connection in your family, don’t miss it!

Do you struggle to get your kids to follow rules or do they backfire every time you try to put them in place? Are you unsure how to set them and consistently reinforce them? If so, I’m inviting you to join my 3-day challenge ‘Keep Calm and Parent On’. It is 100% FREE and will help you create cooperation in your family. Click here to register for the challenge by Sunday, June 13th, and don’t forget to invite any other parent you think will benefit. I can’t wait to work with you!

What You’ll Learn from this Episode:

  • How to implement rules consistently in your family.
  • A parent’s greatest tool.
  • The importance of having rules.
  • The difference between rules and punishments thought up in the heat of the moment.
  • How rules come from a place of love.

Listen to the Full Episode:

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Full Episode Transcript:

Welcome to Real World Peaceful Parenting, a podcast for parents that are tired of yelling, threatening, and punishing their kids. Join mom and master certified parent coach Lisa Smith as she gives you actionable step-by-step strategies that’ll help you transform your household from chaos to cooperation. Let’s dive in.

Welcome, welcome, welcome to today’s episode. Today we’re going to talk about rules. Let me also mention that I have a really special invitation for you that I’m really excited to share with you. So make sure you listen to this episode in its entirety. I do not want you to miss out on my personal information. But first, I have a story to share with you.

A few years ago, I went on a trip by myself. I try to go away at least once a year by myself all alone and plan my business, challenge myself physically, and recharge. So this particular year after six nights away from home, I returned home. My son Malcolm, who is now 16, was 11 at the time and was really excited to see me. In fact, he jumped out of bed and leapt into my arms when I walked through the door. His smile was ear to ear, and he couldn’t stop hugging me. He kept telling me he missed me over and over and over again.

I didn’t give it a ton of thought other than to register how nice it was to genuinely be missed by my son. So the next night my husband, son, and I were hanging out together. My husband asked me if I knew why my son missed me. I said, “Well, I’m not exactly sure other than he noticed I was gone, and it made him feel sad.” My husband turned to our son and said, “Go ahead. Tell your mom why you missed her.”

Well, what happened next is a parent coach’s dream come true. My mom said, “Well Mom. I missed you, but more importantly I missed your rules.” Yep. I about fell over right there. I kept saying to myself, “Play it cool. Play it cool. Don’t have a big reaction or he’ll clam up.” So I simply said, “Really? Tell me more.” Now remember, tell me more is a parent’s greatest tool. If you don’t know that yet, be sure to listen to episode four where you can learn all about how to use tell me more.

So as I said, I simply looked at him calmly and collectively and said, “Really? Tell me more.” He went on to tell me the rules help him feel calm. With rules, he knows what to expect. Rules help him feel loved and safe. We talked about it for a bit, and he summed it up by saying, “Mom, kids think they don’t want and often act like they don’t want rules, but they really do. Rules help us a lot even if we aren’t always able to follow them. Deep down we know they come from a place of love.” Wise soul that boy is. I will tell you wise soul.

Although I didn’t expect those words to come out of my son’s mouth, I cannot say I’m surprised at how he equates family rules with love and security. In our family, we have few rules. The few rules that we have are derived from our family values. For example, we ask our son to shower every night. He was very resistant to this idea when he was younger.

Actually he thought we were asking him to shower because we were being mean. Again, one day I used the tell me more tool, and really dug in to where his anger was coming from around showering. Only to discover that he actually thought we were making him shower because we were being mean. Which was a beautiful opportunity to explain that the request to shower comes from the family value that our body is our temple.

We went on to explain to him over and over and over again that we honor our temple. We respect it and care for it. One of the ways that we care for it is we wash it and clean it daily. After explaining this to him, the lightbulb went off. He was able to understand the rule and the value behind the rule. As a side note, I will add that as a parent, rules born from family values are the easiest to reinforce from a calm and loving place. Make sense, right?

So do you have rules? Do you know what they are? Are they clearly defined? Are they easy to articulate? Can you explain why and where they come from? Now I’m not talking about punishments that are thought up in the heat of the moment when you’re angry and triggered. I’m not talking about threats that come out of your mouth during a confrontation. I am not a fan of throwing out something that you can’t make happen or aren’t going to follow through on.

For example, you might say, “If you hit your brother, we’re going to go home right now.” This might not work if you’ve driven two hours to see your family and attend your niece’s family, and you don’t really want to or have any intention of leaving. Now you’ve thrown out a threat, and it’s going to be really hard to follow through. Eventually your kids will be on to that.

A better plan might be to set the rule that every time you hit someone, including your brother, you will be expected to apologize and make amends regardless of where you are. And you might have to spend some time alone until you’re ready to apologize.

This rule might be born out of your family value that we treat each other respectfully, and that we don’t hurt each other. It’s easy to support, reinforce, and follow through. Your kids know what to expect. The steps will be the same each and every time. You can be calm and loving while holding the expectation that they will make amends for their actions when they get it wrong.

Rules, rules, rules. When set upfront from a calm and loving place, make the peaceful parent world go round. Yeah? To quote the great John Mosely from East L.A. Community College and the basketball coach that was featured last season in Last Chance U, “Rules without relationships equal rebellion.” Said another way, rules plus connection equal cooperation.

Okay. Maybe you like this, and you like what you’re hearing, but everything you try to put rules in place they backfire. Or your kids don’t follow them. Or you’re not clear on how to consistently set them and reinforce them. Maybe they don’t stick, or you can’t figure out how to get your kids to cooperate.

Well, today is your lucky day. Because I am here to extend a personal invitation to you to come and work with me for free. Yep. 100% FREE. I am inviting you to come and join me for my three day challenge called Keep Calm and Parent On. By the end of the challenge, you will know the difference between rules, also known as limits, and punishments. You will know how to set up your family rules and get everyone to follow them. We will work on rules plus connection equal cooperation for you in your individual specific family.

Here’s what I want you to know. You are not alone. I used to feel so isolated and ashamed of the chaos in my home. I felt guilt over my reactions to my son’s outbursts and meltdowns. I felt like everyone around me was doing it right, and I couldn’t figure out how to get there. Does that resonate with you? Are you like, “Yes mam. Sign me up. Hand up. I get that.” Are you thinking right now, “Wow Lisa. It’s like you’re in my house or in my brain.”

The game changer for me was learning the peaceful parenting tools and putting them into practice. I want this for you. Let me say it again. You are not alone. There are many, many other parents struggling with these exact same issues that you’re struggling with. #thestruggleisreal. You’re not a bad parent. You’re not broken. You just need some tools, ideas, and support.

So with this in mind, I created a free three day challenge called Keep Calm and Parent On. Each of the three days I’m going to show up and teach you tools, tips, and ideas to put you on the path to calm the chaos in your home and create the connection. What I know is that simply reading and understanding tips, tools, and ideas doesn’t always have the same effect as getting real coaching and support with other like-minded parents who are dealing with the exact same issues.

So with that in mind, I created a place for us to meet, and for you to get personalized coaching from me. This is where you can come and ask me any question you want about you, your family, and your parenting. I will be there to support and guide you along the way.

Here’s what Stacy had to say after my last three day challenge. “Lisa, this challenge has been such an eye opener. The lessons are so useful and practical, just what I needed. I’ve been on the coaching calls and hearing what others have gone through has helped me see that I am not alone. I love how I can show up and ask questions about my family. Your tips, tools, and ideas point me in the right direction. For the first time, I feel mutual respect within my family.”

I want that for you. Do you want that for you? All right. Here’s how the challenge works. I want you to go to thepeacefulparent.com/challenge. After you register, you’re going to get a workbook and daily reminders about where to join the live coaching calls.

During the challenge, as I mentioned, I’m going to give you tips, tools, and support for how to create that connection and cooperation in your home. It’s 100% F-R-E-E. It’s completely online, and it’s 100% for you. You can participate from anywhere in the world. It’s a minimal time commitment of about 15 minutes a day three times a day.

The Keep Calm and Parent On challenge is all about understanding where your anger comes from. Understanding why your kids storm. We work on getting a handle on our frustration. I teach you tips, tools, and support to move from chaos to cooperation. Each day we tackle a different topic. All you have to do is have a Facebook sign on and join the Facebook group. I go live each day twice a day inside the group. Don’t worry. If you sign up and can’t make the live classes, the recording is available to you inside the Facebook group.

I’m so excited about this challenge. I absolutely love doing it. I can’t wait to work with you. So be sure to go over to thepeacefulparent.com/challenge and make sure that you’re signed up. Feel free to invite any other parent you think would benefit from the challenge. The more the merrier. Just invite them to join us by Sunday June 13th.

All right. Rules, rules, rules. Rules help kids feel safe and loved. If you’re not sure what your rules are, I want to help you figure those out. So jump over to the free three day challenge Keep Calm and Parent On. I’ll look forward to seeing you and working with you during the challenge. It will be my absolute honor. Until we meet again, I’m wishing you peaceful parenting.

Thanks for listening to Real World Peaceful Parenting. If you want more info on how you can transform your parenting, visit thepeacefulparent.com. See you soon.


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Lisa Smith

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