QUICK TIP: The Difference Between Punishment and Consequences

While disciplining our children we want to teach them about self-control and problem solving. We want our children to learn to regulate themselves- considering the results of their choices and learning from their mistakes. Punishments can be effective at stopping behaviors in the moment, but do little to teach responsibility or accountability. Effective consequences are directly related to the behavior. Limits are delivered in a way that communicate alternatives and encourage solutions.

Example: “No bouncing balls in the house! Go to your room for time out.” versus “Balls aren’t for bouncing inside. You can choose to take it outside or find another activity.”

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© 2012 Laura Ladefian Ladefian Counseling LLC

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