Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Conscious Discipline Book Study

The truth is when I attended my very first Conscious Discipline workshop I really didn't think I needed it.

After all, I had a whole semester of behavior management in college!

When I was faced with challenging behavior I typically came up with some sort of positive strategy to help gain more of the behavior I was looking for.  In other words, I used rewards such as treasures, stickers, praise, and special privileges.

When all else failed and I didn't know what else to do I turned to punishments.  I used time out and loss of privileges at school and at home with my own children I sometimes even spanked them.

I'll never forget the day I spanked my young son and he looked at me and laughed.  I knew there had to be a better way.  I didn't want to raise my children in a place where violence and loss of love were used to control behavior.

I am forever grateful that my coworker dragged me into that first Conscious Discipline workshop.  Boy were my eyes opened that day!  I really didn't know a whole lot about social-emotional development at the time nor did I know much about the most recent brain research.

As soon as I left that workshop I ran right down stairs to the exhibit hall and purchased the Conscious Discipline book.  I was SOLD!  I wanted to learn everything I could about lovingly guiding my children to live more disciplined lives.  That was in 2007.  My life will be forever changed!

Has this been an easy journey?  NO!

The most difficult part of this journey has been letting go of the past and empowering myself to embrace the power within so I can be these me I can be!  It has been very painful at times, but also filled with JOY!

It's easy to set up a cute little Safe Place, memorize a new I Love You Ritual, or teach a child to use their BIG voice.  The hard part is doing it YOURSELF!

Now that my own children are teenagers and they have lived with Conscious Discipline for the past 9 years of their lives I can really see the results of our commitment to teach rather than punish.  (That's not to say we get it perfectly.  We've made LOTS of oopsies, but we learn from our mistakes and rebuild relationships and try again.)

One skill that I see really growing in my children right now is the skill of Empathy.  I hear them use it with their friends and they even use it with me.  It is so rewarding to hear the words you've tried to model and teach to your children come out of their mouth without any prompting.

Could I do this on my own?  I really don't think so.  It is because Dr. Becky Bailey has given me so many structured tools and loving guidance that I have been able to develop these skills.  It is also because I have not tried to face this journey alone.  I have reached out in faith to my family, friends, my Conscious Discipline Family, and even other professionals to help me develop in my areas of weakness.  I could not do it alone.

That's why I'm writing to you today.

One of the commitments I'm going to make over the course of the next year is to read a chapter a month of the new Conscious Discipline book.  I've read most of it before, but this time I want to slowly go through the chapters, let it marinate and allow time to really implement that concept into my daily life.  I'm going to use the online book study as my guide and I'm going to post about my journey.

I would be thrilled if you would join me on this journey.  Are you looking for a tool to help you transform your relationship with your husband, children, coworkers, or the children in your classroom?  This book will do that for you if you make a commitment to read the chapters, complete the exercises, and take steps to implement what you're learning in your daily life.

I hope you'll join me!

You can get your copy of the Conscious Discipline book by going to the Conscious Discipline website.  There won't be any assignments or certificates, just an opportunity to develop yourself because it's what YOU want to do.  Because you're worth it!  I will blog monthly about my journey and encourage you along the way via social media.  I would love it if you would comment on this blog entry to let me know you're joining me in this journey.  I would also like to connect with you on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter where you can # your entries about the reading with #cdbookstudy2016.

I will be reading and discussing Chapter one in February.  Join the conversation.

Are you willing?