3 Peaceful Parenting Phrases (For Better Communication!)

Do you struggle with a child who won't listen or who pushes back on anything you say? Here are 3 powerful, peaceful parenting phrases you can use to improve communication and help your child feel more understood and more valued. #Peacefulparenting #ChristianparentingIf you struggle with your child pushing back, or if you ever feel like your child just doesn’t listen, this episode is for you!

Today we’re going to talk about three powerful phrases to help us communicate better and more peacefully with our children.

These three phrases are tools that you’ll be able to put into practice right away to help your child feel more understood and more valued.

Not only that, but you’ll also be able to diffuse power struggles before they even begin! These three phrases are ones that counselors like myself use every single day in their practice. So once you learn them, you can use them not only in your parenting…but also with your spouse, your friends, your boss…anyone!

Peaceful Parenting Phrase 1

The first phrase we are going to talk about  goes like this, “So what I hear you saying is…”

This phrase is a type of reflective listening, or restating what your child has just told you. When we paraphrase something that’s just been told to us, we’re doing two things.

1- We are showing the child that we actually hear their primary concern.

2- We are giving them the chance to clarify if we misunderstood them.

Let me give you an example of how this technique is used. Imagine you and your family have just come home from church one Sunday.

You ask your son, “How was Sunday school?” He responds, “First we had circle time and our teacher had on a new blue dress. Then we had Bible story time but during the story Sam kept trying to talk to me and I told him to shush but the teacher only saw me talking and she moved me to the other side of the class so I couldn’t hear the story anymore and it’s not fair! Then we had a snack and music time.”

Whew! That’s a lot of information! How do you process all that?

Using reflective listening, you might say back to your child, “What I hear you saying is, Sam kept talking to you and you got the blame for interrupting story time.”

See, you just summarized alllll those words with just a few. Now your child feels heard. He feels like you truly care about what he’s saying. (It also gives him the chance to clarify if you misunderstood!)

Peaceful Parenting Phrase 2

The second phrase I want to teach you is, “It sounds like…”

By using this phrase, you are offering empathy and validating your child’s feelings.

In the case of the Sunday school example we just talked about, you might say to your child, “It sounds like you felt frustrated.”

Again, now your child has the opportunity to say, “Yeah! I did!” Or, “No I didn’t feel frustrated, I felt mad!”

Now that your child has identified his feelings, he’ll be able to regulate them better.

Peaceful Parenting Phrase 3

The third phrase I want to teach you is, “So where do we go from here?”

As parents, we very much want to solve our children’s problems. We’re busy and we need to fix this situation so we can keep moving to the next item on our to-do list.

However, when we jump in and intervene on their behalf, we are missing out on an opportunity to teach our kids how to be problem-solvers.

Not only that, but we could also be setting ourselves up for another power struggle.

In the Sunday School example we talked about earlier, we might be tempted to tell our child what to do. Instead, you might say, “So where do we go from here?” This will allow your child to come up with his own solution.

You are empowering your child to feel more in control. (And you’re also teaching him a valuable skill!) If a child has had all of his problems solved for him his whole childhood, once he enters adulthood, he’s not going to have the skills he needs to solve his own day-to-day struggles.

Now you may be thinking, “But I’m not a counselor and that kind of language doesn’t come naturally to me!” That’s okay! It didn’t come naturally to me at first either. Like anything, this takes practice.

The more you do it, the more you practice, the more natural it will feel and the easier it will come.

To summarize, here are three key phrases to use with your kids to improve your communication:

  • So what I hear you saying is…. (This is reflective listening.)
  • It sounds like…. (This is validating your child’s feelings.)
  • So where do we go from here? (This is empowering your child to problem-solve.)

Join Marianna Chambers as she talks about practical ways to become a more peaceful parent. Having children is a wonderful blessing, but it can also be quite stressful. Every day we hear from moms just like you who are struggling to be the gentle parent they want to be. Moms desperately want to raise their children on a firm foundation of love, but those sweet kids sure know how to push our buttons. (And boy, do they push them!)

Marianna Chambers is a counselor, parenting coach, blogger, homeschool mom, and best-selling author. She’s passionate about supporting and encouraging moms. You can follow her on Facebook and Instagram, or read her blog here. You can also join her private Facebook group for Christian moms on a peaceful parenting mission.

5 Secrets for Happier, More Obedient Kids

Do you feel frustrated when your kids won't listen or whine when you ask them to complete a task? In this podcast, we'll talk about 5 secrets for happier, more obedient kids - from a peaceful parenting perspective. #peacefulparenting #ChristianparentingOne of the most common concerns many moms have is that their children are constantly whining and not listening.

I’ve spoken to dozens of moms who feel frustrated and at the end of their rope. They desperately want to parent peacefully, but their kids really push their buttons!

I’ve been there! Over the years I’ve developed five strategies that I use with my own kids to help them thrive — and listen!

Secret 1 for happier kids

The first secret I want to share with you is, “catch them doing well.” 

Just like anyone, kids love to be appreciated. Sometimes I tend to take my kids for granted when they’re doing well. But I try to make it a priority to let them know that I see how hard they’re working. I notice when they help a sibling.

After my youngest was born, my oldest daughter really stepped up and helped. And at the same time, I feel like she felt a little jealous of the new baby who was getting all the attention.

I wanted to show her my appreciation, so I sat down and wrote her a letter of thanks. She cried when she read it! Those simple words really meant a lot to her and she still has the letter to this day.

It’s so important to remind our kids what we admire and appreciate about them!

Secret 2 for happier kids

The second secret is, “set clear expectations and give warnings.”

Kids of all ages really do well when they know what to expect. Mentally preparing your child what is going to happen and why is key to avoid protests!

With giving warnings, I think it’s important to think about being respectful of their time and what they are doing. Sometimes we tend to demand that our kids do something *right now*!  However, if we can give a 5-10 minute warning (and setting a timer!) can help your finish what they’re doing so that they aren’t expected to stop playing abruptly to do what we ask.

Secret 3 for happier kids

Secret number three is, “be consistent.” This is probably the most important tip! In peaceful parenting, we try to avoid empty threats or punitive consequences.

So many times we hear moms rapid-fire threatening their kids. “Stop it! I mean it! You’re going to time out! I’m not going to tell you again!” And on and on it goes. No wonder the kids don’t listen! So many threats and no follow-through.

Personally, I’m more in favor of connecting with the child rather than punishing or yelling. But I do set clear limits and related consequences when needed.

When I set a limit with one of my kids, they get one warning. I calmly and plainly say, “If you don’t stop arguing over that toy, I’m going to take it away for the rest of the day. This is your only warning. Please work it out together.” And if there’s more arguing? The toy goes away until the next day.

(What has happened is that my kids have become expert problem-solvers and turn-takers!)

Secret 4 for happier kids

Secret number four is, “use a rewards system.” Using rewards is somewhat controversial in the peaceful parenting community, but I find that it works well in our family.

This year I started homeschooling my son for the first time. At first, he was unmotivated and protested each day. I created a chart for him to earn stickers for each day he happily completed his school work. (He is much happier, and so am I!)

Secret 5 for happier kids

Secret number five is, “pour on the attention.” Kids crave attention! (And if you don’t give it to them? They act out to get it in any way they can!)

Whenever you can, spend one on one time with your child. Think about your child’s love language and invest your time and energy filling their little love banks. Be sure to make eye contact with them. Be interested in what they have to say. If you take the time to listen now, they’ll be more willing to talk to you when they’re older!

Bonus secret for happier kids

Here’s a bonus secret for you. Keep the end in mind. When your child is an adult and they reflect back on their childhood, how do you want them to remember you?

What type of relationship do you want with your children 10-20 years from now?

On the really hard days, remember your why!

 


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Join Marianna Chambers as she talks about practical ways to become a more peaceful parent. Having children is a wonderful blessing, but it can also be quite stressful. Every day we hear from moms just like you who are struggling to be the gentle parent they want to be. Moms desperately want to raise their children on a firm foundation of love, but those sweet kids sure know how to push our buttons. (And boy, do they push them!)

Marianna Chambers is a counselor, parenting coach, blogger, homeschool mom, and best-selling author. She’s passionate about supporting and encouraging moms. You can follow her on Facebook and Instagram, or read her blog here. You can also join her private Facebook group for Christian moms on a peaceful parenting mission.

 

The Fruit of the Spirit for Moms

The fruit of the Spirit is familiar to most of us, but how can we apply this to motherhood? The Fruit of the Spirit for Moms is the topic of this podcast, as we examine how we can exhibit love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control towards our children. #ChristianparentingThe Fruit of the Spirit for Moms

Our pastor recently did a sermon on the Fruit of the Spirit, and it inspired me to start a Bible study inside my private Christian parenting Facebook group.  (By the way, anyone listening who’d like to join that group, I’d love to have you! You can click here to join.)

Over the last several weeks, we’ve been studying the Fruit of the Spirit, as it applies to motherhood.

Galatians 5:22-23 says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”

Wow! Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control are all things that I desire to be to my children as their mother.

So how can we attain this fruit of the Spirit?

The way we attain the fruit of the Spirit that we desire is by faith through the Holy Spirit. But when we put God on the back burner, we experience what I have officially named “the fruit of the mom flesh.”

And here’s the Marianna version… “But the fruit of the mom flesh is nagging, yelling, annoyance, harshness, manipulation, shaming,  and lack of self-control.”

Ouch. I have no problem admitting that some of these qualities describe my parenting some days. But, I believe that there is hope in Christ.

Maybe you’re a mom who has blown it time and time again and you think there’s no hope for you to change. Perhaps you come from a long line of emotional abuse and you feel powerless to break the cycle. Maybe you feel like you’ve been mommin’ the same way for so long that there’s not even any point to try to change.

But here’s the good news for you today.

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control….it’s not up to you to produce this fruit. In fact, it’s not even about you! It’s about Christ in you and the Holy Spirit working in your heart.

When we experience the gospel and the love that God has so lavished upon us, we cannot help but overflow with that love!

Be careful not to get stuck in this place of mom guilt. If you’re thinking to yourself, “Man, I just don’t embody these fruit of the spirit,” let me remind you.  Pastor J.D. Greear says, “For every one look you take at yourself bemoaning your fruitlessness, take ten looks at Christ, boasting in his faithfulness.”

Scripture references

“I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” – Philippians 4:13 NIV

“…’Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ says the LORD of hosts.” – Zechariah 4:6 NIV

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” – Matthew 6:33 NIV

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” – Galatians 5:22-23 NIV


Join Marianna Chambers as she talks about practical ways to become a more peaceful parent. Having children is a wonderful blessing, but it can also be quite stressful. Every day we hear from moms just like you who are struggling to be the gentle parent they want to be. Moms desperately want to raise their children on a firm foundation of love, but those sweet kids sure know how to push our buttons. (And boy, do they push them!)

Marianna Chambers is a counselor, parenting coach, blogger, homeschool mom, and best-selling author. She’s passionate about supporting and encouraging moms. You can follow her on Facebook and Instagram, or read her blog here. You can also join her private Facebook group for Christian moms on a peaceful parenting mission.

 

Peaceful Parenting 101

What is peaceful parenting? There are so many myths surrounding gentle parenting. In this podcast, we'll discuss peaceful parenting myths vs. reality. We'll also learn how to develop a heart of compassion for our children. #peacefulparenting #ChristianparentingThe world would have you believe that being a “bad mom” is on trend right now.  In mainstream media, movies, meems, comedy routines…”bad moms unite!” is the mantra.

I believe this “bad mom” movement is quite dangerous to Christian parenting. I believe that peaceful parenting  is godly parenting.

There are many misconceptions out there about peaceful parenting.

Peaceful parenting is not:

  • Lack of discipline
  • Giving your child whatever they want

Peaceful parenting is:

  • Connecting with your child emotionally
  • Discipline without shame
  • Encouraging your child to express their emotions without judgement
  • Treating your child with respect
  • Showing your children compassion

Over and over in the Bible, God shows compassion on His children. I believe He expects us to show compassion towards our children as well.

How often do we rush to discipline our kids before we pause to show them compassion without seeing their hearts? How often do we push our kids away instead of building connection?

If you’ve been struggling with anger, yelling, or overwhelm, I’ve got good news for you. Today can be the start of a new chapter in your life. You can’t change the past, but you can start today and change the future.

If you desire to become a more peaceful parent, but you aren’t sure where to start, come to God. He is able. You can pray a simple prayer like this.

Dear God,

I want to thank you so much for my children. They are so precious to me. I thank you for giving me the honor of being their mother. I want to parent them in a way that honors you. Your word say that you are compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love. Help me to be more like you. Lord, fill my heart with compassion for my children. Today I make a commitment to parent more peacefully. Please work in my heart and change me into the mom that you want me to be.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Bible verses on Compassion

“Jesus stopped and called them. “What do you want me to do for you?” he asked. “Lord,” they answered, “we want our sight.” Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.” – Matthew 20:32-34 NIV

“When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So he began teaching them many things.” – Mark 6:34 NIV

“The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.”  – Psalm 103:8


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Join Marianna Chambers as she talks about practical ways to become a more peaceful parent. Having children is a wonderful blessing, but it can also be quite stressful. Every day we hear from moms just like you who are struggling to be the gentle parent they want to be. Moms desperately want to raise their children on a firm foundation of love, but those sweet kids sure know how to push our buttons. (And boy, do they push them!)

Marianna Chambers is a counselor, parenting coach, blogger, homeschool mom, and best-selling author. She’s passionate about supporting and encouraging moms. You can follow her on Facebook and Instagram, or read her blog here. You can also join her private Facebook group for Christian moms on a peaceful parenting mission.