10 Effective Discipline Techniques For Children

Table of Contents What is DisciplineImportance of Discipline in ChildrenParenting StyleEffective Discipline Techniques For Children1- Create Diversions2- Reward…
Mother use effective disciplining techniques with her son

Have you ever thought about the effective discipline techniques for children that really work? Here are some positive discipline techniques that I know help in disciplining children without punishing them.

Really, you don’t have to spank or punish children to discipline them! That’s something I see some parents do. Today’s post is an effort to discuss the various discipline techniques for kids that work.

It’s not that you’re not good as a parent. But I think we aren’t the perfect parents and there’s always some scope of learning new things and techniques to better our parenting, right?

I don’t think any of us went to a school for parenting.

So, sometimes when parenting become challenging, we are often hard on ourselves as we think we are alone and need to come up with the perfect solution when our child misbehaves. Sound familiar?

But it’s not about finding the perfect solution, rather finding effective ways that will mean something to your child. And you’re surely not alone in your quest.

Every parent is worried about how to discipline their child so that they are well-behaved at home and in public.

No one wants to be accused of raising spoiled brats or undisciplined children, especially those who don’t listen to you.

Don’t you want the same for your kids? Or wasn’t it something your parents wanted from you when you were a child? If so, this post should concern each one of you 🙂

“Discipline is a symbol of caring to a child. Discipline is guidance. If there is love, there is no such thing as being too tough with a child.” ~ Bette Davis

Let’s start by first understanding the meaning of discipline.


What is Discipline

Literally, discipline is a system of rules of conduct or method of practice. It is about developing one’s behavior by instruction and practice. It’s about learning or teaching self-control.

Discipline teaches your child to follow rules. It doesn’t mean punishing children when they do something wrong. Instead, it means to teach and train your child from understanding the right from wrong.

It’s the process of teaching your child about what type of behavior is satisfactory and what is not satisfactory.

The most important factor in disciplining your child is how you talk to them as this in turn teaches them how to talk to others and respect them.

The most common ways of disciplining techniques used by parents may involve a time out and light punishments, and even rewards, which are most important.

So, effective discipline in children is important for –

• Teaching kids values
• Teaching kids to care and understand others
• Teaching kids self-direction and self-control
• Helping kids to develop a sense of responsibility
• Protecting kids from danger and helping them to feel safe and secure
• Helping them to adjust well and be happy

Child angry with disciplining mother

Importance of Discipline in Children

As every child is diverse with different temperaments, the way a parent disciplines him or her would differ too.

Parents need to consider the age and developmental levels of their child while disciplining them.

Some parents use discipline techniques like fear, force, intimidation, and punishment to discipline their kids – even for their small kids!


However, research indicates that these are not effective discipline techniques for children and may even harm them. Results show that some kids become bitter, furious, and dependent on force.

Some children even manipulate parents when they are faced with ineffective discipline techniques.

Studies show that parents who use effective discipline techniques raise children who are well-adjusted, self-controlled, self-reliant, and positive.

Effective parenting doesn’t need physical force to discipline kids.

“Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.” ~ Plato

Instead, if parents set well-defined rules and explain why the rules are important, and provide consequences that are understandable, it works well.

Parenting Style

What is your parenting style? Well, your method of disciplining will depend on that. In general, there are three kinds of parents:

Authoritative Parent who is affectionate toward his or her child, and has very clear expectations and consequences. It’s the most effective form of parenting. Such parents are flexible and make efforts to solve the problem with the child, especially with behavioral challenges.

Authoritarian Parent show less affection towards his or her child though has clear consequences and expectations. Such a parent might say things like, “because I’m the Daddy, that’s why” to show authority. It’s a less effective form of parenting.

Permissive Parent provides little discipline but show lots of affection towards his or her child. This is also a less effective form of parenting.

Yes, your parenting style matters. What kind of a parent are you? If you want to know and learn more about the most effective parenting style, I’d written this post that you’d love to read.

Effective Discipline Techniques For Children

The discipline techniques you choose would depend on your child’s age, the type of behavior your child displays, your child’s temperament, and your parenting style.

Here are a few recommended techniques –

1- Create Diversions

If your child is less than a year in age, you shouldn’t ideally be thinking of disciplining your child!

However, parents need to tell their kids what to do and what not to do so that they don’t harm themselves.

For example, parents use the word “no” mostly when babies start crawling and get into things like chords or other things, which is natural curiosity.

In such cases, you can get your child’s attention by calling his or her name, offer a toy to play with, or make a funny sound – anything that diverts or distracts the child’s attention.

Kids this age are easily distracted, so you can easily do that without using harsh tones with them.

2- Reward Good Behavior

Ask me, this works at any stage your child is in! Parents need to reward their child after he or she has done something good, so that the child is encouraged to repeat that behavior.

Some parents don’t realize the importance of rewarding their kids for their good behavior, which can work like magic. So, become a better parent and encourage your kids more.

Give a pat on the back of your child, compliment and praise him or her to show it’s the behavior you want.

It should not be mixed up with bribing a child, which is given beforehand to motivate your child to do things that you want – both are very different.

Kids who are bribed tend to learn to manipulate their parents and work their way to gain more bribes. Some work only when they are bribed and not otherwise. Bribing should be avoided.

Some parents even give points for good behavior and reduce points for bad behavior. My parents did that when I was young, and it made me do good things mainly to gain more good points all the time.

At the end of say a month, if you had more points, you are rewarded for your good behavior. 🙂

“Loving discipline encourages a child to respect other people and live as a responsible, constructive citizen.” ~ Dr. James Dobson

3- Don’t Expect Perfection

No one is perfect, and it’s unrealistic to expect your child to be well behaved always. If you expect it so, it might stress your child and he or she might misbehave just to ease the tension.

For example, don’t expect or ask your child to share his or her toys when a friend visits. Some kids might share, but generally, most young ones are very possessive at this stage.

Instead, you can keep away the most precious toys aside before the friends arrive, which will make him or her feel comfortable sharing the toys.

So, set specific, realistic, and limited goals to help your child so that you and your child both succeed.

4- Natural and Logical Consequences

What are your instant reactions when a child does something wrong? Don’t you let your child experience the result of that behavior instantly, and most of the times it’s pretty bad, isn’t it?

Some parents start lecturing their child instantly, which you don’t have to because there are other effective parenting techniques you can use like consequence.

There are two types of consequences – natural and logical.

Talking of natural consequences, these are the time when you let your child know what will happen if he or she doesn’t behave – the main concept is to let nature runs its course where appropriate.

For example, if a child deliberately breaks a toy or loses it, the toy is no longer there to play with. Or if a child leaves a book in school, he or she might be punished the next day for not completing the homework.

Or a child who teases a dog and gets bitten or scratched, learns not to do it again. Though the punishment is immediate, small, and associated with the cat, it makes the lesson easy to remember.

The other kind is the unacceptable or logical consequence, which are linked to the behavior of the child. These are times when you’d have to play a part and create a consequence.

Explain to your child that the consequences are for bad behavior, and mean what you say. Be firm without screaming and yelling!

For example, tell your child that he or she doesn’t clear the room – he or she will not be allowed to play for 3 days. Missing out on a bedtime story or a car drive can make the child really behave!

Father using spanking to discipline kid

5- Avoid Physical Punishment

Parents need to remember that corporal or physical punishment like hitting and spanking can harm your kids.

Spanking can become violent at times and harm a child – it can also cause them to fear their parents.

It teaches them that they can hit or spank when they are angry too. A child may think that it’s alright to physically hurt someone you love – they learn the wrong lesson.

Research indicates that spanking may encourage anger, aggression, and frustration in children and is an ineffective discipline techniques, best to be avoided.

For parents looking for helpful information and alternatives to spanking, you could check out the Center for Effective Discipline ( and Project NoSpank (

6- Present Alternatives

Be a role model and show your child the alternative behavior that you want your child to change.

For example, if your child is yelling, demonstrate as to how he or she can speak quietly and in a good manner.

Don’t use ineffective discipline techniques of punishment as they don’t teach the child what he or she should be doing – there are no alternatives there.

“To bring up a child in the way he should go, travel that way yourself once in a while.” ~ Josh Billings

7- Introduce Time Outs

Time outs also known as “thinking time”, work well when you need a break from your child’s behavior or when you know what wrong the child did.

It a break from the tension of the present moment and involves physically removing your child from a problematic situation. Time outs shouldn’t last longer than five minutes.

You need to make sure you have such a fixed place well beforehand. It should be a boring and quiet place, and you should ignore your child till he or she is calm and quiet.

Such a place should not be the bedroom where the child can play, neither a dangerous place like a bathroom and other such area.

Lead your child to a chair away from toys and the play area, and explain that he or she needs to stay there till he or she calms down.

Once your child is calm and ready to talk, ask why he or she was misbehaving. It helps your child recognize and deal with his or her feelings.

Give your child a hug in the end, so that your child knows you were unhappy with the behavior, not with your child.

Such an effective discipline technique works well for kids who are around 2 years of age or older, once they are old enough to understand the purpose of a time out.

Most young kids respond well with this discipline technique because separation from their parents is something they don’t like.

However, don’t threaten time-outs, nor think of them as punishments. They are just to be taken as a short cooling-off period and are most effective when your child needs a change of mood.

Parents need a time-out too! I know I do sometimes! 🙂

8- Use Grounding

I’m sure most of you already use this method!

This is another effective discipline technique for school going kids and teenagers, where you restrict your child to a certain place, like his or her room as a way to punish him or her.

For example, grounding your child on a Sunday night as punishment for breaking rules on Saturday about something you didn’t like.

Father using positive way of disciplining child

9- Reinforce The Positive

Positive reinforcement is better and more powerful than punishment or negative reinforcement.

Small rewards like an ice cream treat or car ride can be more effective than big rewards, like a promise of a bicycle. Kids might stop trying if they feel they can’t earn the big reward that has been offered.

If your child does something good – don’t forget to praise him or her. Make your praise specific and focused on your child’s behavior.

For example, “Wow, you are such a smart child – what good grades you’ve got in your exams!” Such specific praises help a child to evaluate his or her own achievement.

“Children need encouragement like plants need water.” ~ Rudolf Dreikurs

10- Take Away Privileges

At times there isn’t a logical consequence for a bad behavior, and sometimes you just don’t have the time to think it through.

In such cases, another effective discipline technique for children for unacceptable behavior is to take away a privilege.

Your child should learn that privileges come with responsibility and he or she needs to earn it. This technique is effective only when it’s used occasionally.

For example, if your child doesn’t complete his or her homework in time, you might take away the privilege of watching television for the day.

Such child discipline technique works best if the privilege is something the child values, if it’s related in some way to the behavior, and if it’s taken away as soon as the inappropriate behavior occurs.

“Your kids require you most of all to love them for who they are, not to spend your whole time trying to correct them.” ~ Bill Ayers

Your child will grow and develop trust from you, if he or she feels loved and secure. Effective discipline techniques can help to encourage your child’s trust in you.

Your child needs rules and consequences, and perhaps acts out if there are too few or too many of them.

If you lay out clearly how you expect your child’s behavior to be and ensure those expectations are enforced consistently, your child feels that he or she can depend on you to keep him or her safe.

I think the key to good and effective discipline technique is to be flexible. Parents should have the ability to use a variety of approaches and disciplinary techniques, especially if some don’t work.

Don’t try to focus on too many things all the time as that might make you and your child miserable. Remember, you have enough time to discipline your child.

You’d love this video on how to discipline children – check it out 🙂


Parenting Tips – How to Discipline Children ~ YouTube Video

Also, keep your words simple when you correct your child, so that they’re understood. Mockery and sarcasm will not work with young kids; instead, focus on one thing at a time to get the best out of them.

You need to ask yourself whether you own behavior is teaching your child the type of things you want him or her to learn. Remember, the most effective discipline technique of all is setting a good example.

“The best bought-up children are those who have seen their parents as they are. Hypocrisy is not the first duty of a parent.” ~ George B. Shaw

Parenting isn’t easy at times – and as I’ve said in my earlier posts, it’s both a challenging and rewarding experience. Yes, at times the behavior of your kids often makes it harder.

You’d love to read a lovely guest post Carolyn had written long back about keeping calm when things get tough – “Don’t Get On That Train”.

Good parenting is more difficult when both the parents are not on the “same page” about the way of parenting, or when there’s a single parent.

But as parents, our job is to teach our children the right way to behave. It’s our work to make our kids more civilized so they become caring, loving, and responsible adults. Thus, we need to do what it takes!

So, are you ready to use these techniques to discipline your child? Then go ahead, what are you waiting for. 🙂

Over to you

When you were a child, what kind of discipline technique did your parents use? Do you think these effective discipline techniques for children are good, or do you have more suggestions? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.


Photo Credit: Freedigitalphotos

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  1. Hey Harleena,

    Thanks for sharing such a fantastic article. As we all agree that parenting is not an easy task, parents have to go through so many things for the betterment of their child. You are absolutely right that discipline is very important to make them grow in a proper way, so that they can grew up as a responsible person which help him to take their decision properly.

    All the descipline technique are excellent. I think every parents must go through this article once and try to follow these techniques which work best for their kids.


  2. I love this article, Harleena. Right on point. I believe that everything is fluid, and for me, modelling is an amazing way to foster compassion for self for the children. I easily admit my mistakes and apologize. I also do this to foster a compassionate relationship between parent and children. And I believe strongly in positive reinforcement and natural consequences. These things seem to work best in my house. But I’m grateful there are many other options to choose from when a certain situation warrants a different method. Thank you for this great post.

  3. Hello Harleena ma’am,
    You have defined the definition of Discipline very well. Very true that for living a systematic life you need discipline in your and in your child.I like the classification of parenting style, it is necessary to do self evaluation because first we have to be in discipline then only we can teach the child.
    Thanks for the amazing post.

  4. Today’s modern parents do not have the patience to deal with understanding the problems they face with their children. Unless parents spend quality time with their children, they will grow up without knowing the value of love. Parents feel that buying latest things for their children is their main duty. Things cannot substitute for the lack of their presence. Thrusting their anger and tension on their children is yet another mistake parents do. They also never seem to know the magic of appreciation. Loved and appreciated children grow up into confident individuals. EXCELLENT TIPS, Harleena. Thank you for sharing it!

  5. Hello Harleena,

    Happy to find this another and informative post here form your side. As always said I’m learn new things and ideas form your each post. Discipline means to follow the rule and regulation. Yes, In the small age not very child very much aware about that, but while they come in the specific age easily understand the situation and also fallow these. But while we talk about the parents all are worry about that.

    Apart form that Discipline is really necessary part of our life, without Discipline no one got success in their life. Have a look my new post and share your views.

  6. Hello Harleena!
    Parenting is really a tough job and not everyone knows what it takes to be a good parent! I appreciate you on raising this complex issue! Children are too delicate to be handled brutally (I feel) and should be dealt with care! Physical punishments cause a severe damage to them psychologically and thus should not be exercised even in rarest of occasions!

  7. Hello Harleena Singh,

    Parenting is very important. Right parenting is the most important to grow a child proper way. Sometimes parents are rude again sometime they are very normal. It effects on child’s mentality.

    You wrote excellent disciplined technique. From the young age, if a kid develops responsibility, it will help him to take decision in a proper way.

    I think all parents need to read this content for once & act in this way. So they can guide properly their kid. Happy Parenting 🙂

    1. Hi Ahsan,

      Yes, parenting the right way is important, and though no parent or child is perfect – both sides have to make an effort to make things work for the betterment of the child, isn’t it?

      Glad you liked these techniques mentioned, and yes, if kids are taught the right ways to follow and if parents can discipline kids, it would help them become responsible adults.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  8. Hi Harleena

    WOW! Yet another fabulous and very beneficial post. I have a 6yr old daughter and now that she’s in school it’s getting harder to “discipline” her. In the sense that now she is becoming more independent, questioning rules etc. I’m walking a fine line of wanting to embrace her independence, (especially being a girl, I don’t want her to feel that she can’t respectfully speak her mind) but yet let her know that there are rules she must follow. About 4 months back we started a “responsibility chart” where my husband and I reward her if she did something responsible and deduct points if she did not act appropriately. You do mention something similar in your post- I feel so much better as that reaffirms what we are doing- WHEW!! 🙂 So far this seems to be working very well 🙂

    Thank You so much, I’ll definitely incorporate these discipline steps with my daughter 🙂
    – Monisha

    1. Hi Monisha – nice to have you back 🙂

      Glad you liked the post and could relate to it. Ah…I can well understand what you mean, and that’s the age when they start showing signs of doing things on their own.

      It’s certainly not easy because as you mentioned you don’t want her to lose her newly found independence, which girls all the more need, yet you must discipline her and let her know the rules she needs to follow. Trying out these effective discipline techniques would help there I feel, especially the ones you feel would work for her. I think taking away privileges is an all time favorite and so is grounding (but when she’s a little older).

      Yes, my mom (and then later me) used to have the same chart system with all the things we had to do and if we did those, we were given good points, or else our points were deducted. And because we were two of us, there was always a competition to out-do the other, thus – we tried to always gain the points and did work before time. Slowly doing the good things became a habit with us, and as we grew, the chart vanished, but our habits didn’t! So, you are certainly on the right lines there 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. I hope these simple techniques help in more ways than one. 🙂

      BTW- I wonder if you tried to fetch a Gravatar because I see your lovely picture on your blog – would be lovely to see you here too 🙂

  9. Hello Ma’am

    Now what to say as I am still unmarried :). But As I spend my childhood in full control of my parents. That time, physical punishment is the only technique which could stop us by doing wrong. I am so mush impressed by your last point of taking away privileges, I totally agree with that. Parents has provide good materialistic life to their kids and this thing can make them irresponsible.

    1. Hi Tejwinder,

      Ah…don’t worry – that perhaps won’t be for long and you would need these techniques once you have kids of your own. 🙂

      Yes indeed, perhaps some parents in our times and years before that only knew the hard-harsh way of punishing kids to get them to behave properly. Actually we cannot blame their ways because that’s perhaps what they learnt from their parents or knew only that way. However, I’m glad with time, things have changed and now there are many such effective techniques to discipline children.

      Taking away privileges always works like a charm and makes kids do things and become aware of behaving properly the next time.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us 🙂

  10. “It’s the process of teaching your child about what type of behavior is satisfactory and what is not satisfactory.”

    Yes. What I particularly love about this definition of discipline is that it’s not about reward-punishment only. I’m not particularly good with reward-punishment. Reward alone doesn’t set clear guidelines, and I find it very difficult to choose a consequence that fits. Not to mention, it’s far more difficult to focus on discipline AFTER a child has done something unsatisfactory when perhaps we, the adults, are already angry.

    When my daughter was a baby, I read a Dr Sears book that included things like holding, carrying, and listening to your child as the beginning of discipline. When your child feels heard and cared about, then you have a context and a system for your rules. Thus why I also agree that “because I said so” isn’t a good way to guide children. Perhaps it works when they’re little, but once they hit an age of independence, it’s much more difficult. (I don’t have adolescent children, but I have taught 12-21yos for the last 15 years).

    It’s about getting along as a team and working together, and when one person doesn’t do her part, then everyone feels it.

    1. Hi Leigh – nice to have you back 🙂

      Yes indeed, discipline isn’t only about rewards and punishment, it’s about what is acceptable and what is not. Not all parents take up the reward-punishment system, nor does it work well with all kids. What works for one, may or may not work for another as each parent-child is different and so is their parenting style.

      I agree that it’s tough to decide what discipline technique to adopt after the child misbehaves, especially when the child or parent is angry. Perhaps in such cases parents should just let things cool down and later let kids know what techniques they want them to follow from next time on-wards. Once they do that, kids too are prepared and even parents would be able to deal with things without really getting angry as it was all discussed earlier, so even kids know what’s expected ahead.

      Yes, that perhaps works well with babies and young ones. As they grow into toddlers, tweens and then teens, thing change. They need a little discipline and that’s where as parents we need to lay out the rules, with love of course, so that there’s acceptance and understanding about it from both sides.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us 🙂

  11. Hi Harleena,

    For as long as humans have been on earth until now, most people have believed that disciplining a child means to hit and/or punish, but in fact it means none of that.

    Now, this said, it’s a healthy thing to do to ground kids or put them on time-out when they do something wrong, otherwise they may never learn boundaries.

    However, hitting is never a good thing. It’s even barbaric in my book 🙂 My mother had given me some spanking at times, but never slapped me in the face. She thought that slapping a kid what really something awful.

    When children are not giving the proper discipline, they can actually develop a lack of direction in life, and when I say discipline, I’m talking about the type your talking about on this post. This is so very important when raising kids.

    This is great information for parents, Harleena. Thanks for writing this 🙂

    1. Hi Sylviane,

      I agree with you there, and such was the case more so with our parents and generations earlier. I am glad things have changed to quite an extent now 🙂

      Teaching kids such effective discipline techniques helps them learn the right from wrong, and I see no harm if such ways can make them better adults. Small things like time-outs, grounding, or taking away their privileges for a while teaches them to know their flaws and what they need to do to better themselves. And being kids, they are quick to learn and would change in no time – at least my kids did and they never repeated those things knowing what the result would be.

      Of course, you don’t have to be harsh and really punish them any other way, that’s not right. I agree with your mom, light spanking when the younger ones don’t listen at all or throws fits of tantrum is still alright if required, but only occasionally.

      Yes, without proper discipline children lack direction and I wonder what kind of a life they would really lead or what the outcome would be of such parenting. I guess coming from an Army background, discipline runs in our blood, but it’s always with love 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by, and I hope it helps parents while raising their kids. 🙂

  12. Hi Harleena,
    Very informative post indeed!!!
    There is no denying the fact discipline is a part of our life as it plays a major role in our personal as well as professional life.If there is no discipline in our life then we can stray from our life and goal.All the techniques that you have mentioned above are simply good and outstanding we should all follow these techniques.
    Thanks for sharing
    Keep posting

    1. Hi Addison,

      Absolutely! And I think without discipline how would our life really be, tough to imagine 🙂

      I guess if we are able to teach our kids these basic discipline techniques, which kids love because they then know what is the right from the wrong, we help them become better adults, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views 🙂

  13. Hi Harleena, Great article.

    You’re right, authoritative is the way to go. I am not happy when I see parents who spoil their children, trying to bribe them for good behavior. I taught my kids from their early years, “cooperation makes it happen.” When they behaved, we could do fun things such as go to the park or beach. But when they didn’t cooperate we simply couldn’t do fun things.

    I also discovered a great app called iRewardChart that rewards children for good behavior. Kids earn stars for chores such as cleaning their rooms, setting the table, washing the dishes, walking the dog, etc. That app is amazing, when you work with your kids to set up the chores and the rewards they are incredibly motivated to help out! I named that app The Best App Ever! when I started blogging. I just wish it was around from when my kids were little.

    I know this article will help guide many parents, Harleena!

    1. Hi Carolyn,

      I agree with you there, it surely is and I think it’s the best way for both, parents and kids. Bribing doesn’t really work, and if it does, it’s only temporary and even kids become used to doing things only when they are bribed. Tough to imagine the outcome once they grow up and do things only if they are bribed!

      That’s just the way we work in our family too, good behavior from their side resulted in more of outings and giving back to them more. If not, they didn’t get what they wanted too and I think kids understand this well enough and co-operate if you tell them the rules that work.

      I think you’d mentioned about iRewardChart on your blog and I think it’s a great app. Of course, we didn’t know of it but we’ve been doing the point system from generations in our family. Like my mom used to give us points for each good thing we did and minus points when we didn’t or if we behaved badly. And at the end of the month, a good score lead to gifts and rewards – collecting them was always the fun part. Kids this way learn good behavior and are always eager to do their best.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Yes, I hope it does help parents who need to know about such techniques. 🙂

    2. Carolyn, thank you so much for such wonderful words. This comment had skipped my attention. And thanks for being such a great supporter of our efforts.
      Harleena, Thanks for a great post. I do talk to a lot of parents thru our app. WHen it comes to rewards, I always say, the line between reward and bribe is blurred. And parents should differentiate between them, while reward (and not punishment) is a positive reinforcement, but focusing more on intangible rewards than paying either by pocket money, or toys, or any tangible goods for that matter, is not recommended. That tends to be more like bribe.
      Kids really need our attention, pat in the back, encouraging words than anything else! And honestly that reward, they tend to retain for a lifetime, while they tend to forget the physical rewards.

  14. Hello madam,
    This post is very rich in morality and social as well as family values. Though I am a teenager and neither I have to do anything with parenting as of now nor I face such restrictions now. But your post did ignite my past memories where papa was too strict (he is even now) and punished severely. I don’t know if schooling fits the scope of this post but I would like to mention our maths teacher and let me tell u he was hitler (lol).

    By citing the above explanations I only want to point that though being harsh is good at times but if you go beyond you miss the chord.

    Another thing scrolling down the comments of respected bloggers above I think everyone agrees that love and affection can get work done far easily than scolds and flogging.
    This post is definitely going to help me in the next phase of my life . Hope for the best and congratz for such great response to your posts (they deserve it because they always teach you to reflect within may it be about parenting or about “what the living have to do with the dead”).

    1. Hi Swadhin,

      Well, thank you for saying that even though you aren’t yet a parent yourself – but glad you can relate to it. 🙂

      Yes, some parents are strict but that’s perhaps for our own good, which we realize when we grow up. Lol…I can well relate to what you meant by your Math’s teacher being like Hiter! I think sometimes parents and teachers need to take such steps for the good of the student, though they shouldn’t overdo it, isn’t it?

      Absolutely! Nothing works better than doing things with love and understanding. Even the toughest or stubbornest of kids melt down and get better when you show them move of love or explain things like that. Again, some parents know this way, while others know the flogging way, especially the in generations gone by, but not their fault, as perhaps that was the only way they knew.

      I’m sure this would help when you get married and become a parent! Ah…nice to know that you remember that post on what the living have to do with the dead!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us 🙂

      1. You are most welcome ma,am and sorry for the late response to your reply..
        hope I remember this post till I get married he he he 😀 anyways good lessions should always be there with us .

        thank you for writing such great posts what a nice mentor you are.

  15. Hi Harleena Singh
    There is no denying the fact that The tween years can certainly be challenging. Kids at this age often want more freedom and independence than they’re ready for. It’s essential that parents ensure kids only receive extra freedom when they can demonstrate the ability to handle the responsibility.
    By the way Awesome tips by you.

    1. Hi John,

      Yes indeed, the teenage years, as we too have gone through that phase, aren’t all that easy. But I guess as parents we know that this is perhaps a passing phase and things will eventually settle down with them. Giving them the required freedom is important, but we need to be careful and keep track of things too.

      Thanks for stopping by, and I’m glad you liked these effective discipline tips too 🙂

  16. These are some great tips here Harleena.

    Number one took me a while to figure out when I was raising my daughter. I was saying no all day long until I figured out how to distract her.

    Discipline is so important for a child’s safety and behavior. I found that time out worked well. For a young child five minutes did the trick. For the tween..and teen…that’s a different story. I would tell my daughter to get to her room and think about what she said or did and come out when you have a well thought out answer. I took the phone away and didn’t allow her to have her TV on.

    One night she didn’t come out at all. She woke up the next day to hold a grudge that was supposed to make it OK. After school, I sent her back to her room. She sure came up with a good answer then he he he.

    When it comes down to it, I believe consistency is the answer. We cannot bend the rules no matter how crazy we get!

    And what about manners? Maybe I’m an old crank, but seeing kids running around a restaurant without disciple is a big pet peeve of mine. I taught my daughter at a very young age to sit at the table and eat properly.

    Just a thought….


    1. Hi Donna,

      I can well imagine and that perhaps none of us are taught how to parent kids when we become parents, unless you have people to guide you or you read books on parenting etc, which is something parents are much more aware about nowadays. In our times, it all came through hit and trial, and that experience is what we learnt and pass it down to our kids. Now of course, there is so much more to parenting than it was in our days, isn’t it? Like with our parents, who did the best they could with us, we did the best we could with our kids, though I’m glad there’s always been progress in this regard.

      I agree, with each age the way or discipline technique differs. What we do with kids, isn’t something that works well with teens. Some kids won’t even go to their rooms or they won’t even listen to what you say and certainly need a tougher hand, if disciplining with love doesn’t work of course. Lol…I think the most common technique that works with teens is taking away their phones or not allowing the TV or the Internet – and how they’ll do all that you want them to in a jiffy 🙂

      I guess your daughter knew mom means business and listened to you! Yes, you need to be consistent if you want to maintain the discipline and I think it should be that ways so that even the kids know we aren’t joking about it or taking things lying down. That’s how they’ll learn and pass it on to their kids too. Manners too, the sooner you start the better it is. Like you, certain things were taught to my kids and to date they follow it up. I think if you follow things consistently they become a habit with time and kids don’t mind it at all as they become used to doing it like a routine or must do things or must not do things.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences and wisdom with us. 🙂

  17. Hi Harleena,

    I have tried all these techniques but I feel each child is different and we have to change according to their response. I have realised that no one can be a perfect parent and inculcating discipline is the hardest part of parenting…you never know which strategy would backfire, though I have been a strict discipline freak…I threw up my hands many times in case of my younger child, who could defeat me…even me! who knew I could accomplish everything!! She taught me some profound lessons of life!

    While disciplining my students, I learnt that a softer, emotional response towards their waywardness is more effective than harsh words or the routine punishment. One of the boys who had become immune to beating, sarcasm and all kinds of punishments had tears in his eyes when I spoke to him in a softer tone and gave him the chance to explain his side. This incident was an eye opener for me as I got an opportunity to delve into a teenager’s mind, what hurts them and how they respond to routine punishments and time outs.

    You have done a remarkable job…I loved reading all aspects of dealing with discipline!! Thanks for sharing it.

    1. Hi Balroop – good to have you back 🙂

      Absolutely! Every child and every parent – the way they deal with it all depends on the situation, and there is certainly no fixed rule that works for one. You need to try out the ways that fit you best and go with those. I agree, no one is perfect, not the parent, nor the child, though if we can find a good blend we are on the right tracks perhaps.

      Tough to believe that you were a tough disciplinary! But yes, sometimes we need to be when things get out of hand. Lol…must be some interesting lessons of life your younger one taught you for sure 🙂

      Ah…so you were not that tough or strict with your students as compared with your own kids – I can understand that having been in a similar long back when I was teaching too. But that is what really works, when you are soft and bring out the emotions, something that children can relate to, but perhaps this is possible with tweens and teens, not the toddlers or younger lots all that much as their emotional levels are still developing.

      Thanks for sharing your experiences with us, and glad you liked these discipline techniques too 🙂

      1. Oh! no I was very strict with my students too…[I had to as I was the discipline in charge too] but as I mentioned earlier, I tried all techniques…changed them according to the person and situation and also mellowed down after some learning lessons from my own children! Now under the training of my one year old grand daughter…learning modern lessons!!!

        1. Lol…yes, perhaps being in-charge changes things and you need to be a perfect blend of both – show the soft side when required or else be a little hard to get things done. It’s good that the lessons from your own kids could be used with your students too and this would help you get a better understanding of them and their personalities.

          Ah…I would love to know what the 1 year old taught you or did she make you lose all your techniques! 🙂

          Thanks once again 🙂

  18. I would add that parents ought not judge themselves or their parenting on the account of how fast the kids respond to the discipline. Just because a kids continues to misbehave doesn’t mean that you are not doing it right, it just takes kids a long time with loads of repetition! Assess them by seeing how they act with others, not how they act with you!

    1. Hi Jodi,

      I agree with you there, though with hit and trial parents have to eventually work out parenting techniques that work best for them and their child. Oh yes…kids need to be told things and taught how to do them, many times over before they start following or listening to you, and as parents, it’s your duty to keep trying, without giving up. I guess you need to asses both, how they act with others and with you because some kids are smart and will behave well in-front of others, but not in-front of you 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us 🙂

  19. Hello Harleena,

    I am the father of a boy of two – so I can personally relate with this entry and I must sincerely thank you for creating such a unique topic when I needed the info most.

    Well, my parents used to spank the hell out of me when I was a boy – however, I know that’s not the ultimate…the creative tips you’ve shared here will sure serve as a great alternative particularly for my boy. I am strangely in love with withholding privileges – it seems such a measure would work great with him!

    Do have a great day!


    1. Hi Terungwa,

      Nice to know that you can relate to this post being a father yourself 🙂

      Yes, that age is one of the naughtiest ones I must say. I agree, just as Babanature was also mentioning, some parents in our time believed in spanking kids or perhaps that’s what they knew and it worked for them. But now with so many other effective discipline techniques that we know of, that becomes one of the last options, isn’t it? Oh yes…no child likes their privileges being taken away, and they would do anything to keep them and get more if they can – do try them out and let me know how it goes 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice day as well 🙂

      1. I agree completely, Harleena. Once you define the lines and aren’t prepared to compromise, I don’t see any reason why your child or children won’t follow suit!

        Thanks for the insight once again!


        1. Absolutely! So, if you have things in your hands and are able to handle your kids, your way, nothing should go wrong ideally 🙂

          Thanks once again 🙂

  20. Hi Harleena,

    Growing up, I had a very authoritative father. He is not retired but he was one of the most strict teachers in the high school where there used to study at least 500-700 students every year.

    Guess what, being the strictest teacher (I mean he was furious), he needed to set a great example of discipline and so he expected us to be perfect.

    It wasn’t fun in the beginning but I am grateful for that experience because that is what I believe, made me tough, gave me the power to persevere because no matter how much punishments he gave, I never corrected my course 🙂

    I think these days there is too much talk of being nicer, being understanding with kids and gradually the world is producing more whiners than winners because of the mentality shift.

    I guess no parenting style is perfect in itself. It depends on the individual kid and parents and things need to be balanced. What worked for me, won’t work with somebody else and I truly believe that I would have grown up as a much worse person if my dad wasn’t as strict and authoritative as he was. I think he did a great job of keeping me in check 🙂


    1. Hi Kumar,

      Nice to hear about your Dad and the way you were brought up, very similar to my Dad who was also a strict disciplinary, being in the army (it comes naturally there!) It was passed down to us but not too hard because my Mom was always there to mellow down things and put it all across in a nice, soft way.

      There were never any need for anything other than a loud tone or stern look before we did what we were asked to do, and the same is what we do with our kids and it works very well. Yes, each parent and child, and the parenting way differs. There is never any fixed formula that works for all.

      In your case, it surely made you tough but I wonder if you are the same with your boys now – as strict as your dad? I don’t think so because things, situations, and the times have changed, and along with it, our parenting style too, isn’t it? I think if you can get across to your kids without being really harsh with them, then why be too hard and harsh, until of course things go out of hand when you have to take strict measure and every parent should do that. I agree, we are always so grateful to our parents for bringing us up the way they did, and being parents ourselves today we can understand that it certainly isn’t easy 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. 🙂

      1. Like you said, it was passed down to us although leadership training, reading books and associating with people with different thought processes has helped tremendously.

        However, I won’t say I am one of the softest dads either 🙂

        My boys know when I am not happy (which happens more often than not since they are that age) and I introduced a point system to penalize them when they need to be and that brings my blood pressure down while keeps them safer 🙂

        At the end of the day, it all has to work out and so far, it has!

        With God, all things are possible you see 🙂


        1. I agree, all those books, reading and meeting people, and the training certainly helps, and well, I think you must be a blend of a soft and hard dad, both at times 🙂

          Ah…good to know you too follow the point system, just like we did and my parents too. It does have a good impact and even kids play their part very well that way because they want to gain those points. Lol…yes, I can well imagine knowing the age they are in. Yes indeed, with His grace it all works if we keep trying ways to make it all better 🙂

          Thanks once again 🙂

  21. Hi Harleena,

    You have done another fantastic job. When mine were young I used ‘THE LOOK’ I had a look that I could give them and they knew I meant business. Sometimes I had to add the tone in my voice just a little, but it worked. When they were older it was the grounding.

    I have noticed today there are many parents that use the hot sauce for the mouthing off. Not sure I do agree with that. Guess if you have a mouthy child it can work. One of mine was that way and I just used a little dab of soft soap. It worked like a charm.
    AS for toys that needed put away when they were little, I had a box and at the end of the day if they wouldn’t put them away they went into the box. To get them out they had to do something for me. Like fold up towels or clothes from laundry, etc.

    Back then they didn’t really have the time out thing, but one of them it worked really good to sit her in her little rocking chair in the corner. Sometimes she would sit herself in the chair, because she thought she did something wrong. Then I would have to talk to her to see what she thought she did wrong. Usually it was nothing. She was harder on herself than I was on her.

    I totally agree “Effective discipline techniques can help to encourage your child’s trust in you.” Without discipline they begin to feel unloved. Especial when they get in school and hear of other kids having to toe a line at home. They wonder why they can get away with anything.
    Thanks again and have a wonderful day.

    1. Hi Debbie,

      Well, thank you for your kind words of appreciation, and I’m glad you liked the post and could relate so well to it 🙂

      That’s a lot like me I should say, and sometimes just the look or a stern and firm voice is enough, isn’t it? More so, kids are quick to notice the change in the parents look or voice and the smart ones would change their ways, instead of the parent trying out these techniques on them. Yes, once they grow older and perhaps try to have their own ways, especially the tough teenage years, in that case grounding always works or taking away their privileges.

      Regarding using the hot or soft sauce, I would say it depends from one parent to the other. Speaking of myself, I’ve also never been harsh with my kids because there was never any need or how one brings them up when they are young also matters in this case. But with those kids who just aren’t manageable, perhaps parents need to use that method, something that I’m personally not in favor of either.

      I liked your idea of getting work done from them! My mom used to give us points, so we were always doing what we were asked for and coming to think of it, we were such good kids – totally disciplined! My kids too did that till they reached their teens and now they have their mood swings when they would do a lot on certain days, while on the others, they just won’t listen! So, mom takes a chill-pill those days too – knowing these are their teen years and it would all settle down with time 🙂

      That’s so sweet to sit in a chair on her own – the guilt must be making her do that. But yes, in our times, perhaps our parents didn’t think of time-outs too and not everyone uses this discipline technique even today, while for others it works well.

      Yes indeed, I think parents should discipline their kids and even kids like that, though of course they shouldn’t overdo it or it can all have an adverse effect. Everything in moderation is good, and just as Sheryl was mentioning above in her comment, if you can do it all with love, then it’s all the more better, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences and words of wisdom with us. Have a nice week ahead as well 🙂

  22. My “child” is now a 5′ 8″ 17 year-old young woman who I have to look up to (being that I’m only 5′ LOL). Your methods are all valuable, especially when they are enforced with love. I never believed in spanking — I could never slap someone I love. Or anyone, for that matter. My childhood was missing on love, and I committed to not repeat history. Now, the discipline is, “If you don’t do XYZ, you’ll hand over your car keys!” Works like a charm every time (but we rarely, rarely need to use it).

    1. Hi Sheryl,

      Lol…I hear you, and the scene is pretty much the same this end too, though instead of one, I have two 🙂

      I agree with you, and sometimes when things can be done with love, you really don’t need any kind of disciplining techniques at all. However, they are mostly used when our kids are very small or what we call the training period. Over time, once they grow up and get trained, they require less of discipline and more of understanding, that’s what I’ve noticed with my kids at least.

      Ditto your words about slapping too, and I haven’t raised a hand ever on anyone for that matter. At times my hubby tells me you should have when they were young, when once or twice things went out of hand, which is again normal with kids. But some people just can’t or can find better ways to handle things, just as your – if you don’t do XYZ 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us 🙂

  23. Hello Harleena,
    another great article from your side.You have listed almost all the things which normally happen in our day to day life. I am learning lots of things from your blog. I will surly share your blog with my future wife..

    One suggestion, you should check your commentluv plugin, it is not working properly…


    1. Hi Himanshu,

      Yes indeed, I think every parent goes through this phase of disciplining their child and faces various challenges. I hope this post helps parents who might need to know more about it, and of course you and your future wife too!

      The commentluv plugin isn’t working due to the recent WordPress update I did and I’ve complained to the support for resolving that issue – hoping for the best.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your views with us. Glad to know that you keep learning new things each time you visit – you made my day by saying that! 🙂

  24. Excellent post, Harleena!

    Such an important topic. What really worked for my kids was the time out and as they got older the loss of privilege. A great book on raising children with discipline is How to Talk so kids will listen (&How to listen so kids will talk). That’s the title but I don’t have the author name (sorry).

    1. Hi Lisa,

      I agree, it is an important topic and I hope it helps parent to discipline their kids in a better way 🙂

      I never really tried out the time-out method with my kids or had a soft heart to punish the little ones way back then, but yes, loss of privilege worked wonders with them, and it does even now…lol..even though they are much older. Haven’t heard of the book, but would surely look it up, thanks for mentioning it here, and it does sound interesting.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us 🙂

  25. I really enjoyed this article, and I will definitely be sharing it through my network. Well written and it holds a lot of value. 🙂

    1. Welcome to my blog A.D!

      Glad you like the post, and yes, being a parent myself, I tried thinking and adding in all that I could, though I know a lot more could’ve been written on this topic 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by and for sharing it – much appreciated 🙂

  26. Hi Harleena!

    I am definitely the authoritative parent. My kids, well they’re teens now but I still call them “kids”, we have a lot of fun but they also know I have expectations and what the consequences are if they don’t follow them.

    I still use grounding techniques and I take away things like social media and even their phones and that seems to get my message across but I haven’t had to use it lately. 🙂

    When they were little my mom used to say a spanking only hurts for a little while and I think that’s true. I’m not saying I never spanked my children when they were little but as they got older I changed my punishment technique and I think that’s worked for me.

    Great post Harleena, full of great advice as usual! 🙂 Hope you’re having a great week!

    1. Hi Corina – good to have you back 🙂

      I think we are similar there and sail in the same boat. Perhaps it’s the best combination for parents – to be a friend and have fun with your kids, but also be authoritative when need be.

      Lol…yes, sometimes you need to do that and how the kids hate it, especially when their cell phones are taken away or they are grounded for a party they wanted to go for. I guess you do it a few times and they get the message, so are careful not to make the same mistakes again. Yes, with time they learn, at least most of them do.

      Spanking lightly is still alright, though I’ve never done that with my kids – just a stern voice was enough for them. It isn’t suggested nowadays with such effective parenting techniques, which perhaps we didn’t know about earlier – nor did our parents.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

  27. I’m a father of 2 Harleena so you understand how important this post is to me. My first baby is 4 and the second just arrived (1 month)

    You have offered a lot of meat even before getting to the real subject of the post. Ihat’s what it means to give in-depth treatment of a subject 😉

    I remember my sister shouting in the house ‘No TV for you both today’ to her kids especially when they failed to perform their domestic chores and that taught them a lesson.

    I also remember my mum would always take away the only piece of meat from my dish because of a silly action on my part. I guess she also understood the “Take Away Privileges” point of this post 😉

    A lot of beautiful tips. I’ll call my wife’s attention to it. Thanks for taking time to post such a meaty content Haleena and do have a wonder rest of the week

    1. Hi Enstine,

      Yes indeed, and congratulations once again for being a dad for the second time 🙂

      I know how and what all you must be going through with two small kids that age – it’s certainly not east. Besides, let the new arrival just grow up a little…lol…you’ll have them both – all over you! But jokes apart, I know you’d manage it all well being the organized person you are.

      Yes, sometimes parents have to do that – shout on the top of their voice (I do that sometimes to get things done when my kids don’t listen, if I’ve repeatedly told them to do something and they don’t do it!), so I don’t blame her, but yes, everything in moderation is alright, or else kids become tuned to your loud voice and will just listen to it from one ear and it will be out from the other 🙂

      Taking away what you like and value the most is an effective discipline technique that can do wonders with kids, just as it happened in your case. I guess you become aware and are more careful the next time, isn’t it?

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your experiences with us. I hope your wife likes these tips, and I wish you both a lovely parenthood ahead. Have a nice week as well 🙂

  28. Hello Harleena,

    What a nice topic to go with the week 🙂 .
    Hmmm… when i was little the only way to show us we are truly wrong was through flogging (with cane) communication.

    But the beaten depends, if your crime is minor – you will be warned but if that incident repeat it self, you will be flogged. But after the cane, you will receive a motherly tears and a hug plus a big advice… and this method works so well on many of the kids in my locality then. At least those training have made me a better me…

    Back here we don’t do grounding because grounding children are for the rich (so they think) 🙂

    Though one good way to treat a child and make him/her become better, is by leading with good examples. there are some things he’ll do wrong, worn him/her with your serious face but with a cool and calm voice. He repeats the mistake again, give him a little spank so he’ll know that he did something wrong. 🙂 .

    just warning, grounding,won’t do the trick… at least there are many who brakes the grounding rules right?

    but haven’t flogged my child for once because he learns from his mistakes quickly 🙂

    PS: Your commentluv is still not working…

    Nice tips… Thanks and do have a good week ahead

    1. Hi Babanature,

      Nice to know that you liked this topic and could relate to it 🙂

      Lol…yes, sometimes parents in those times used that method too, and just one of that kind of discipline method was good enough to teach us a lesson, isn’t it? Or did you get flogged often? I remember my Dad telling me of the same ways, and the soft heart of mothers along with the pampering you receive after flogging had it’s own charm.

      But I think those lessons you never forget even to date, isn’t it? It certainly makes you a better person because you learn things at an early age. However, with time, such kinds of punishments where you hit the child are reducing. I won’t say they are entirely over because many parents still believe in it, and that’s their parenting way, but if you can manage with other effective discipline techniques, which perhaps parents didn’t know long back, then why not try them.

      Grounding works when you have little older kids, and of course, if they listen to you, because that is yet another problem parents face nowadays! I agree with you about leading by example and being the ideal role model – there’s nothing that works better I would say. I know you do that with your son – a cool, calm voice – meaning business as you’d mentioned in an earlier post comment I think. A little off and on light spank is alright I think, sometimes you need that if kids get out of hand, but not the real spanking, slapping, hitting or other such things are good.

      I know you are a wonderful parent, as I’ve mentioned this earlier and your child certainly doesn’t need any harsh methods and must be learning a lot just through your stern look if he does something wrong 🙂

      Yes, there is some problem with the CommentLuv not working that occurred after I updated the WordPress to the latest version and I’m trying to work it through with Andy and his support team. Sorry for that.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your lovely experiences with us. Have a nice week ahead as well 🙂

  29. Very good discipline techniques. I loved it very much. Since I have small children and sometimes you feel that you are out of control, this is a timely advice. Sometimes you simply don’t know what to do or simply if you are doing the right thing or not. I like the idea of developing a sense of responsibility, this will work after the age of 8 onwards just after they are beginning to understand many things. I have seen very polite children and some very rude ones, it looks like its down to parenting. Thanks Harleena for this great post.

    1. Hi Shalu,

      Glad you liked these discipline techniques, and yes, for parents with young ones it would surely come handy 🙂

      I agree with you, little ones can drive you crazy at times. I remember my time too, not that the teenage years are easy. I think at every stage of parenting there are challenges. But what matters is how we take them up and find ways best suitable to us and handle the situation, isn’t it? Some kids think they can be rude and get away with it, even though their parents try their best to teach them to be polite. They certainly need to be handled with care through such techniques.

      There is certainly no fixed formula that works for all as each family, parent, child, and situation is different, but knowing about such techniques certainly helps us take the right direction.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us 🙂

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