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46 - Positive Discipline Ch. 10 - 12

posted May 26, 2016, 7:36 AM by Doug Muha

Counselor Notes 46

April 8, 2016

Positive Discipline Chapters 10 - 12


Finishing up with Positive Discipline, we are now at the highlights of  chapters 10 through 12.

Chapter 10:  Personality: How Yours Affects Theirs

In the book Dr. Nelson emphasizes the point that “adults don’t realize … that any child which is misbehaving is subconsciously saying ‘I just want to belong, and I have some mistaken ideas about how to accomplish belonging.’”  (p. 141)






Worst Fear

Emotional and physical pain and stress

Humiliation; criticism; the unexpected

Rejection; abandonment; hassles

Meaninglessness; unimportance

Believes the way to avoid the worst fear is to:

Seek comfort, ask for special service; make others comfortable; choose the easiest way

Control self and/or others and/or situation

Please others

active – demand approval passive – evoke pity

Do more; be better than others; be right; be more useful; be more competent


Easygoing; few demands; minds own business; peacemaker; mellow; empathetic; predictable

Leadership; organized; productive; persistent; follows rules

Friendly; considerate; compromises; nonaggressive; volunteers

Knowledgeable; idealistic; persistent; social interest; gets things done.


Doesn’t develop talents; limits productivity; avoids personal growth

Rigid; doesn’t develop creativity, spontaneity, or social closeness

Doesn’t check with others about what pleases them; doesn’t take care of self.

Workaholic; overburdened; over-responsible; over-involved

Unknowingly invites from others

Annoyance; irritation; boredom; impatience

Rebellion; resistance; challenge; frustration

Pleasure at first and then demands for approval and reciprocation

Feelings of inadequacy and guilt; “How can I measure up?”; lying to avoid judgments

Creates and then complains about

Diminished productivity; impatience; lack of personal growth

Lack of friends and closeness; Feeling uptight

Lack of respect for self and others; resentment

Being overwhelmed; lack of time; “I have to do everything”



Chapter 11: Putting It All Together

Chapter 11 is a bit of a review of the book.  It reviews and reiterates  the following points (directly from the list on p. 286 – 287; see book for full details – one could misconstrue and then wrongly apply these):

1.   Take some cooling off time because you do better when you feel better.

2.   Decide what you will do instead of what you will try to get children to do.

3.   Let your children know in advance of what you will try to make children do.

4.   Use kind and firm action – not words.  (Keep your mouth shut and act.)

5.   When words are necessary, make them few and stated kindly and firmly.

6.   Use emotional withdrawal to stay out of power struggles and wait for a calm time to focus on solutions.

7.   Use  routine charts to avoid power struggles.

8.   Avoid bedtime hassles by sharing happiest and saddest moments while tucking children in.

9.   Avoid power struggles by getting children involved in solutions.

10.                Stay out of children’s fights – or treat children the same.

11.                First comfort the one who did the hurting.  Then invite that child to help you comfort the one who was hurt.

12.                Validate feelings.

13.                Give hugs.

14.                Use your sense of humor.

15.                Get children involved in mealtime planning, cooking, and cleaning.

16.                Establish nonverbal reminders with children for what needs to be done.

17.                Offer choices instead of making demands.

18.                Use “As soon as ___, then ____.”

19.                Use allowance money to teach money management not for punishment or reward.

Chapter 12: Love and Joy in Homes and Classrooms

Dr. Nelsen finishes Positive Discipline with three important parenting reminders:

1.   What we do is never as important as how we do it.

2.   See mistakes as opportunities to learn.

3.   Sometimes we have to learn the same thing over and over again.

She also reminds parents to:

·         Express your unconditional love

·         Teach and model communication and problem-solving skills.

·         Help children develop a sense of responsibility.

·         Take full responsibility for your part in any conflict.

·         Have compassion for yourself.

With all the technological advancements society has made, no one has come up with anything to make parenting any easier – at least not good parenting.  But on the other hand, few things are more rewarding.  Our roles as parents are worthy of our best efforts.  

Doug Muha Ed.S.
School Counselor
Waverly Elementary School

P.S.  Those that want to visit Dr. Nelsen’s Positive Discipline web page may find it at:http://www.positivediscipline.com/