Parents, Teach Thought-Stopping! Fix Crooked Thinking Caps

Does your child pout, blame and brood? Does he gripe, groan, and grumble? Do you worry about your child's attitude? If so, maybe your child's thinking cap is crooked. If it is, you can help. First, understand what's going haywire under that cap. Second, learn how too many crooked thoughts create crummy thinking habits. Third, teach your child how to straighten his thinking cap and grow into a person of character.

Does your child look, talk, and, feel sad? Perhaps you said "No" to watching TV, or didn't buy a toy she wanted, or you had to cancel a fun event. It's perfectly OK for your child to feel sad. It's not OK when your child broods and feels deeply depressed over every hurt and disappointment. It's time to help her adjust her thinking cap.

Perhaps your child looks, talks, and feels angry. Maybe you restricted him because of fighting, or told him to quit sassing, or caught him bullying his little brother. It's natural for a child to feel frustrated when things don't go his way but it is not all right for him to fuel his frustrations with grudges and hateful thoughts. It's time to help him adjust his thinking cap.

Let's say your child looks, talks, and feels worthless for making mistakes. Maybe your child tries to be too perfect and feels regretful when she is not. Maybe she thinks you'll be disappointed if her report card isn't excellent, or if she breaks a dish or spills her milk. It's OK if she feels regret but expanding her regrets into crushing guilt is not. It's time to help her adjust her thinking cap.

Does your child look, talk, and feel worried? Does he play it safe and avoid challenges? Is he unwilling to try new things? Does he care too much how others think of him? It's OK for him to feel concern about taking tests, speaking before his class, or when trying to make new friends but inflating his concerns into a habit of worry and fear is not. It's time to help him adjust his thinking cap.

Occasionally your child may slip into depression, anger, guilt or fear. To stay depressed, angry, guilty or fearful, your child will have to think a lot of negative thoughts. Lots of negative thoughts create a crooked thinking cap.

Perhaps you know adults with "bad" attitudes. Maybe they pity themselves and blame others. Perhaps they look for insults and exaggerate hurts. Maybe they belittle themselves and apologize for every tiny mistake. These adults definitely have crooked thinking caps. To avoid this kind of future for your child and all the pain such thinking causes, let's find out two ways to adjust your child's thinking cap.

First, use your good judgment and know there are times when you need to go to your child's feelings. When your child seems too sad, too angry, too guilty, or too fearful, put your arm around your child and ask, "What's really wrong?" Listen. Don't try to change, correct, or put down your child's thoughts. Just listen. Let your child pour out her heart and listen. When your child is almost done, ask, "Is there more?" Then listen. Congratulations! You've probably relieved your child of painful emotion and cleared the air for a new beginning.

The second way to help your child straighten his thinking cap is called THOUGHT-STOPPING. It's best to teach this technique when your child is not upset and is in a mood to talk with you. The first step is to encourage your child to notice his negative self-talk, like "Everybody hates me." "It's not my fault." "I can't do it." The second step is to help your child recall three powerful images of him having done something good that felt great. Here are a few examples of images that may be powerful for your child:

Playing with her pet

Catching his first fish

Learning how to swim

Laughing so hard her sides ached

Doing a great job on his homework

Make sure your child is the one who chooses the positive images. Tell your child that each image must be more powerful than the negative thought.

Teach and practice the following several times when your child is in a good mood. That way your child will know how to use THOUGHT-STOPPING when she needs it.

When your child catches herself brooding on negative thoughts tell her to switch them to one of the positive images by yelling, "Stop!" inside her head to the negative thoughts. Tell your child to stay with the positive image for 30 seconds. (This prevents her from switching back to her negative thinking.) Time the 30 seconds so she'll know how long it is. Then have your child say, "I am in control." Your child will be too. She'll be in control of her thinking cap.

You have just explored what goes on under crooked thinking caps. You have learned how crooked thinkers grow into unhappy adults. You have also discovered two techniques to help your child straighten his/her thinking cap. Now it's time to teach these techniques to your child so that your child grows into a positive person of character.

For your ease and convenience, Jean Tracy has created thought-stopping charts with simple instructions and award stickers.

Jean Tracy, MSS, invites you to build character in young hearts and growing minds. To raise your awesome kids with solid characters, sign up for her FREE Parenting Newsletter and download her FREE bonding activities, parenting tips, and parenting articles at, http://www.KidsDiscuss.com

In The News:


mindbodygreen.com

Amanda Chantal Bacon Opens Up About Her Spiritual Approach To Parenting
mindbodygreen.com
Here at mbg, we believe you're the expert on your own wellness journey, and becoming a parent is no different. Yet from the moment of conception, or often even before, mothers and fathers are told what to do. Our Parenting Paths week celebrates a ...


TMZ.com

Fergie I've Got a Handle On Single Parenting
TMZ.com
Fergie is successfully juggling motherhood and career ... by bringing her little man to work with her. Fergie was at a NYC radio station Monday morning holding on to her son, Axl Jack, who's been going back and forth between mom and dad. Josh Duhamel ...
Fergie & Son Axl Enjoy a 'Date Night' After Her Split From Josh DuhamelSheKnows.com

all 59 news articles »

NRToday.com

Avoid helicopter parenting
NRToday.com
Helicopter parenting may seem like parents are simply being overprotective, but such an approach might have a serious impact. Many therapists say that parents need to get over being overly involved; otherwise, they risk potential psychological damage ...


HuffPost

The Only Parenting Advice I'd Dare To Give
HuffPost
The Only Parenting Advice I'd Dare To Give. 09/24/2017 03:11 am ET Updated 15 hours ago. I am sitting here. In a café. In front of me, a decaf. A laptop. And a pen. I am sitting here. Alone. For the first time in a while. A long while. My eldest ...


NOLA.com

A little PG-13 parenting advice, from one fed-up New Orleans man
NOLA.com
Eddie Lee Johnson smiles as he poses next to a hand-lettered sign he created to ward off pesky kids in his neighborhood on the edge of Mid-City. Eddie Lee Johnson smiles as he poses next to a hand-lettered sign he created to ward off pesky kids in his ...


Free parenting classes available
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner
FAIRBANKS — A new four-week session of “Particular Parenting — Choosing the Right Discipline for Your Child's Age and Personality” starts Oct. 5. The classes take place on four consecutive Thursdays at 6 p.m. at the Fairbanks Memorial Hospital ...


Foster parenting course to start
The Hutchinson News
Saint Francis Community Services will begin a 10-week course for those interested in exploring foster parenthood. The program is free and the first class is scheduled for 6 p.m. today at 501 N. Monroe St. More than 60 Reno County children must stay in ...


HuffPost

This Is Why You Need to Stop Justifying Your Parenting Choices
HuffPost
Over the past week, I've been thinking about a conversation I had with a friend recently. We were at a play date, with a bunch of other moms and their kids. The conversation turned, as it often does, to the stories of how our kids were born. I ...


UF kicks off 7-part series focused on parenting
The Courier
The University of Findlay's psychology program will be offering “Raising Kids Today,” a seven-part series of free information sessions to assist caregivers with raising children, beginning Wednesday. The talks, held in Old Main's Ritz Auditorium, will ...


Washington Post

Parenting books won't end your anxiety. Here's what to do instead ...
Washington Post
Q: As a general rule, I manage my parenting anxiety by not reading parenting books. It's too much contradictory information, and I get nuts about it. I've found that ...

and more »
Google News

Spelling Games

The following spelling games can be used by parents to... Read More

Natural Disasters: Help Your Child Cope With The Anxiety

How on earth can you help your family cope with... Read More

Parenting Your Teenager: 6 Tips for Dealing with Bad Report Cards

One of the basic issues we need to understand is... Read More

Lead with Love:How Mothers Can Use Their Greatest Strength to Manage Around Their Technical Weakness

My wife and I have been working on a video... Read More

The Safest Stuffed Toys for the Kids on your Gift List

Although it's hard to say when the first stuffed dogs... Read More

Parenting Your Teenager: But everyone else gets to do it!

Q. We are getting to the stage with our kids... Read More

Child ADHD - Deciding Where to Draw the Line

The wonderful adaptability of children in dealing with the challenges... Read More

Let Your Children Name the New Baby

Choosing a baby name is an important job, so make... Read More

Teach Your Child About Money

What are we teaching our children about money? Hopefully something!I... Read More

How Kids Learn To Cooperate In Video Games -- A Guide for Parents and Teachers

A great many parents are concerned that the electronic games... Read More

Psychological Effects of Child Abuse

Many children who suffer from the psychological effects of child... Read More

Understanding A Childs Beliefs, Nuturing Young Beliefs

Children are moral and make moral determinations... at least until... Read More

Homework Help for the Attention Deficit Child

Does the homework battle so typical with your hyperactive or... Read More

If at First They Dont Succeed - What a Great Opportunity!

When kids try new things, sometimes it's a 'fit' and... Read More

Tools to Find Family-Friendly Content

The Internet, is magnificent in its resources for families. Educational... Read More

My Sweet Little Valentine

Valentine day has always been a special day in my... Read More

How to Help Your Child be Successful in Kindergarten

Your child's first year of school should be a fun... Read More

The Truth About Motherhood

What is the mystery of motherhood? I know that when... Read More

Parents: You Can Do Something About Professional Sports Ethics

Most of us can agree that there is a lack... Read More

Guerilla Parenting Techniques: What Are They?

When you hear the phrase, 'guerrilla parenting techniques', what images... Read More

What To Do When You Think Your Child Might Have AD/HD

AD/HD (attention deficit disorder) is one of the most common... Read More

Im a Mom, Shes a Mom: Being an Adult with Your Parents

On one of her quarterly visits to see her grandson,... Read More

Child Education

The initial state of happiness about an own child is... Read More

Get Down (On The Floor!) And Play With Your Children

When was the last time you and your kids rolled... Read More

On Raising a Child with Disabilities: Sara & the Nail Salon

Sara loves pampering. Haircuts, facials, manicures, and makeup bring smiles,... Read More