Children and Self Discipline

Ah, Children! We love them with the type of love God created between parents and children. It is designed to be a love that will protect, provide, and guide the children while they walk the path God has planned specifically for them.

“Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do.” Ephesians 6:1. That is God’s instruction to our kids.

I like to tell the kids in our Children’s Ministry about the one time I tried to “back-talk” my mother. It backfired badly! I did not try it again. She made it known that this behavior was unacceptable and I was to respect her. I tell the kids that it is totally possible to not defiantly talk back to their parents. Many of the children are amazed to consider themselves never doing it again.

Teaching children self discipline will help ready them for life’s challenges. Below are 7 tips for teaching children self discipline.

  1. Teach children to come when they are called. (Not yell “what?” from across the house.
  2. Teach children to respond positively to correction. This is a tough one, but children learning to control an impulse to be angry about correction are learning a life-long skill.
  3. Social skills that require self discipline include learning to listen, anger control, and learning when it is appropriate to interrupt a conversation.
  4. Encourage children to participate in self discipline building activities such as learning how to play an instrument. Also, sports, caring for pets, cleaning their room, and many others, are important ways to learn self discipline.
  5. Recognizing your child when he receives a reward helps to positively reinforce a job well done.
  6. Use bedtimes to teach self discipline. Set a time and develop a routine that is done every night. Teaching a child to quietly stay in bed while you are still awake takes a lot of work, but it definitely pays off in the end.
  7. Morning routines and chores are ways to learn responsibility. The rewards for being responsible are called privileges. A child who is responsible to be ready on time in the morning is then rewarded by an extra 15 minutes at night or something equivalent.

Self discipline is ultimately a large part of a person’s character. We as parents want our children to become the kind of adults whom are self sufficient.