I haven’t really written about Love and Logic on this blog before. It is an approach to parenting that has been around since 1977. But, I don’t disregard it as “old school.” I think there are a lot of valuable ideas within their process. As with anything, I encourage you to read it and embrace the ideas that feel right to you.
This is how kellybear.com describes it: The Love and Logic process includes sharing control and decision-making, using empathy with consequences, and enhancing the self-concept of children. They assert that their methods lead to improved student behavior and achievement. Their methods help children learn to be responsible and gain self-confidence.
I get regular emails from them at my preschool email. It is something they call the Insider’s Club. Their emails often cause me to pause and reflect – which is always a good thing. Just click on the photo below to find the site where you can sign up.
Today’s topic touched a chord with me. As much as I have patience with your children here at school, I struggle with managing my emotions when I am frustrated with things that don’t make sense, when I feel like I’ve made a mistake, and when things that are supposed to work – just don’t. To be even more honest, I could list many other times that my lack of patience shines obviously for anyone around me. (Dealing with services such as our satellite subscriber. . . .) Perhaps you will see why this newsletter email especially spoke to me:
If I’m being honest, I have to admit that I often struggle to control my own emotions. This is especially true when I am driving on city streets or highways. There seem to be more distracted and aggressive drivers to dodge than ever before. Which means I must be more alert, more aware, and more self-aware than ever before. It’s often a great struggle, of course, to remain calm and refrain from overreacting.
Kids today are in a similar fix. Are there more people out there who are hurting these days? More people who dump their emotional garbage onto others? More temptations and pitfalls for young people? Kids today must be equipped with better social and emotional skills than at any previous time in our society so that they can avoid the very prevalent threats to their emotional well-being.
Just as I often feel tempted to declare that I’m never going to get behind the wheel again and brave the dangers and frustrations on the highway, I often feel the urge to keep my beloved children off life’s highways and protect them from all the bad social and emotional traffic. It’s really rough out there and I don’t want one of my kids becoming a “statistic.”
The wisdom of Love and Logic has taught me that instead of overly protecting or overly warning my kids, I must teach them life skills. Life skills are more effective and more lasting than warnings or coddling can ever be.
There is sobering news about these life skills: they must begin with me. Teaching by example is a huge part of raising kids with Love and Logic. On the road, I might take a few slow, controlled breaths and tell myself something positive (and true) such as, “This too, shall pass.” I might repeat some other phrases such as, “Today, I will avoid appearing on an episode of ‘COPS’” (or a reality show, news program, or YouTube video).
While I am driving, I might be very honest in front of my kids by saying, “It sure is hard to have patience in traffic like this.” Does it help kids when we are honest about our own struggles while modeling skills to guard our own hearts and attitudes?
My best hope is that when my kids hit tough situations, they will guard their own hearts and attitudes, just like their dad does in traffic—most of the time!
I would check out their website HERE. There are also two books that might be of interest to you.