Do You Treat Your Child Like A Toxic Boss Would?

If you don’t get to work on time, you’re more than fired. I’ll make sure you never work again.”

”You’re replaceable. I could have someone else in here doing your job in 5 minutes.”

“It’s not your place to question me. I’m in charge here!”

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“That’s stupid. If I want your opinion, I’ll ask for it.”

“Your ideas don’t mean anything around here.”

“I don’t care how this project gets done, just get it done!”

What would you do if your boss said these things to you?

How would you feel about your boss if this was the environment you worked in every day?

Would you be pleasant and happy to be there?

Or would you show up, do your job, and get out of there… all the while working on a plan to make your escape and find a new job?

Perhaps you recognize that this is not how you want to be treated - that you’re a whole person with a whole range of emotions and that being spoken to this way is simply not okay, right?

So then why do we speak that way to our children?

Let’s rephrase those statements, in order.

“If you don’t clean your room in the next 60 minutes, you’re not just grounded. I’ll throw away your video games.”

“Maybe your sister will be better at helping me with this craft since you don’t want to pay attention.”

“Because I said so and I’m the grown up.”

“No, that won’t work because you don’t understand grown up things.”

“Just listen to me and do it my way, please?!”

“I don’t care how heavy it is - it’s your job to take out the trash so figure it out.”

The truth is, parents treat their children with the same toxic behaviors they won’t accept from their boss…

And then they wonder why their children are withdrawn, angry, non-communicative, and reduce or cease contact the second they’re able to escape.

Because without even realizing it, they’ve demanded compliance withOUT considering that their child is a whole person, with a whole range of emotions… and that speaking to them this way is simply not okay.

There is a better way to interact with your kids that STILL gets them to behave appropriately… and it will improve your relationship with them AND show them what healthy communication looks like.

The First Shift: Seeing Your Child As a Young Person

The first change to make in how you parent is to view your child as a young human - a young person - instead of a child.

It’s important we recognize our children as people. And along with that comes all the things that people have: emotions, thoughts, feelings, personalities, ideas, opinions, egos.

Dad and daughter in watergun fight

And when you can shift your parenting from “managing a child” to “communicating with another human,” it allows you to approach your relationship with your child from a different angle.

Here’s the thing: you’re not working to simply get your child to blindly obey you. Your goal is actually to build a working relationship with another human in your household so that you BOTH can feel seen, heard, understood… and happy.

Let’s go back to work for a second. Instead of a boss that demands you do what she says, he instead approaches you with openness, curiosity, and a desire for human-to-human connection.

Instead of dismissing your ideas, they’re considered.

Instead of being berated for making a mistake, you’re helped through the process of not making it again.

Instead of being told you’re replaceable, you’re made to feel valued and significant and appreciated.

How would you feel about your job then?

Chances are, you’d

  • Be more willing to participate fully when there’s a new project or initiative
  • Have a better attitude toward your boss and coworkers
  • Build real friendships that last beyond your time at that company
  • Be happier outside of work
  • Have higher self-confidence because you feel capable
  • Feel less stress and anxiety when you’re beginning your work week
  • Perform better at tasks to which you’re assigned… even if those tasks are new and unfamiliar to you

And a whole host of other things that we KNOW are possible in a positive work environment.

Guess what?! Those same things will happen when you bring respect-based parenting into your home.

Your child will have more confidence, learn new skills more easily, be happier and less stressed, contribute to a positive home environment, and treat you and their siblings better.

AND by focusing on your relationship and your bond… you’re building a foundation that will last well beyond when they grow up and move out on their own.

The good news is that shifting your relationship in this way is a lot easier than you think

How To Have a Great Relationship With Respect and Cooperation

I first published Positive Discipline in 1981, and at the time it was a parenting style that ensured parents, teachers, and others involved in child development could reduce unwanted behaviors withOUT the negative effects of yelling and other punishments.

But it’s grown since then. It’s become a way to relate to your children, to grow your relationship with them, and to help them build the skills they need to succeed as they become adults.

As we’ve discovered more about child development, understood more about emotional, social, and cognitive milestones, and dug deeper into what helps children become well-adjusted adults…

Well, we’ve realized that building a relationship on the foundation of mutual respect and cooperation is the key to solving a whole host of problems.

Anxious teenage boy

We’ve discovered that demanding compliance, causing shame, punishing, and other negative forms of interaction are incredibly and increasingly harmful to children.

Harmful to YOUR children.

It’s causing children to develop mood disorders and trauma responses. It’s introducing anxiety and lowered self-esteem. It’s modeling toxic relationships that they will see as normal and acceptable for the rest of their lives.

Simply commanding your child to comply doesn’t help them understand the reasoning they’ll need in order to make good decisions in the future. It strips them of the opportunity to predict natural consequences of their actions. To problem-solve and find creative solutions to otherwise unsolvable problems.

When you demand compliance, you break the relationship you have with your child - and the effects of that will follow you around for a lifetime. (Them too.)

But when you use Positive Discipline parenting methods - you avoid all of that.

You create a safe space for your child to grow in - for him to learn and make mistakes and for her to understand healthy boundaries.

You give them the skills they need to live a full and capable life.

And with the 30+ parenting tools that I’ve included with Positive Discipline - it’s organized in a way that ALSO results in the behaviors you want.

Imagine your child cleaning his room withOUT you having to yell at him as he lays on the kitchen floor.

Imagine your child finishing her homework withOUT the threat of punishment and the pouts that come after.

Imagine your children getting themselves ready for school withOUT starting your day with increased blood pressure and a bad mood.

Imagine solving arguments in a way that prevents the argument from happening again.

Being able to keep your cool because you know there’s a plan to solve the situation.

How much better would your life - and your children’s lives - be because of this?

That’s Positive Discipline. And I’m going to help you make it happen in your home.

Positive Discipline Made Easy: Your Shortcut to Respect

I have worked with thousands of parents, educators, child care providers, and child development specialists around the world… but my very favorite collaborator by far is my daughter, Mary Nelsen Tamborski.

She’s a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist - and she works hands-on with families just like yours every single day. Families who want better relationships, who want to overcome negative behaviors, and who want to do it in a way that fosters connection and harmony.

And it’s through this hands-on work that we’ve done that we’ve realized…

It’s one thing for us to tell you what to do to improve the atmosphere in your home… and another thing entirely for you to know how to make it happen.

Family roller blading together

That’s why we decided we needed to create a practical, step-by-step guide to help you really make Positive Discipline doable for your family.

So you can STOP expecting compliance and start fostering an atmosphere of respect and cooperation.

With this program, you’ll feel confident using each of the 30+ Positive Discipline tools to improve behavior, build skills, and repair and improve your relationship with your children… no matter what curveballs that your children will (sometimes gleefully) throw your way.

  • In the middle of a supermarket temper tantrum…
  • When you’re frazzled and overwhelmed…
  • During those times when your child just. won’t. listen.
  • When you’ve had a long day and you just want peace in your home.

These tools will reshape your relationship with your child, make your household the smoothest it’s ever been, and remind you just how much you love being a parent.

Get The Tools You Need

Your On-Demand Parenting Coaches

Mary and I will use stories, real-world and real-life examples, workbooks, imagination exercises, and many more techniques to help you not only learn the foundations of Positive Discipline…

But truly understand the theory behind it so you can continually make parenting decisions that feel good AND work.

We created this program to go in-depth on the most important, most effective tools to parent your kids in a way that creates short term harmony while fostering long term success… all designed to build on top of one another as your child grows, learns and develops those critical abilities they need to:

  • Understand the behavior you want to see
  • Rationalize the consequences of their actions
  • Manage their emotions and reactions in a healthy, appropriate way
  • Communicate effectively with you

And what’s more - these tools will help you do all this while maintaining the loving, positive relationship you want to have with them.

For 4+ hours, we’ll be your on-demand personal parenting coaches. We’ll walk you through the ins and outs of HOW to put our tools into practice, breaking each tool down into actionable steps and showing you how to apply all that you are learning with your children.

We’ll role play different scenarios so you can see what success looks like.

And we’ll show you what to do when things go wrong, so you can quickly course-correct and get back on track.

Dad and son bumper cars

Once you’ve taken this 6-module course, you’ll understand:

  • The different types of discipline that are used by parents everywhere and what they’re teaching your children about themselves, you, and the world as a whole…
  • The 6 essential skills your child needs to be a well-adjusted and successful adult - and exactly how Positive Discipline helps you teach your child each one of these…
  • The Kind and Firm principle explained in detail, with examples and categories to help you use it in the moment when it will be most effective…
  • The one type of time-out you SHOULD use that encourages your child by offering him a choice for self-regulation instead of creating an opportunity to think they’re a “bad kid”…
  • The 4 potential outcomes of punishment(once you hear what punishment really does for your child, you’ll think twice about grounding her ever again!)…
  • How to avoid “the blame game” and what you can focus on instead to build connection and keep the problem from repeating over and over…
  • The skill that your child simply doesn’t have before the age of 7 that makes punishments not only completely ineffective, but damaging to completely appropriate brain development
  • The hidden part of behavior that’s easy to miss - especially in the heat of the moment - but is critical to helping you understand the belief behind your child’s behavior (this insight is far more impactful on your kids future and wellbeing!)
  • Where your child’s happiness will REALLY come from and what your role is in that happiness (hint: it’s NOT doing everything for them)…
  • The superpower hiding in your hug that will help you bond and connect with your child as well as help them learn what you’re working to teach them…
  • And dozens more lessons that will help you understand your child more easily so you can parent them more mindfully…

And you’ll finally, FINALLY have the tools in your hand to build the right behaviors at the right time, using the right methods for both you AND your child.

So not only is there harmony in your home now…

But long-term, sustained harmony and genuine affection long-term.

It’s a true win-win situation, and I can’t wait to help you get started.


Jane Nelsen

Parent Without Yelling, Power Struggles and Guilt

  • Critical skills to raise happy, healthy kids
  • Make parenting the most fun you’ve ever had
  • Ensure your kids feel loved, accepted and understood
  • Co-parenting secrets to help your kids thrive
  • Common parenting mistakes you must avoid
  • Less tantrums and tears, more snuggles and laughter

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