Advice Column, Child, Parenting, Toddler

Natural Consequences

  • Munchkins
  • Category Advice Column, Child, Parenting, Toddler

It’s a parent’s job to make the rules, it’s the child’s job to try and break them.

– Anonymous

A natural consequence is a result of an action happening from inexperience or an accident. For instance:

  • ‘If you ride your bike over the step, you will fall and hurt yourself.’
  • ‘We have asked you repeatedly not to play with your ball in that area. However, you kicked your ball where there was a thorn bush and it punctured. I am sure you are really disappointed.’

A logical consequence is that as a result of disobedience there is a price to pay to help you remember the next time. For instance:

  • ‘If you forget to put your bike away, it will be taken away for a few days.’
  • I asked you to sit and drink your juice. You chose to get up and so it all spilled. Unfortunately you cannot have any more.’

Both of these examples are extremely effective ways of encouraging a change of behaviour. Allowing children to suffer natural and logical consequences allows them to experience disappointments from making small mistakes or bad decisions, yet still develop winning skills in the process.

If they never learn to feel and overcome such feelings of disappointment, they will struggle to cope with the hardships of life.

Showing them empathy and unconditional love through this process helps them to feel like winners every time they ‘lose’.

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