[Advice Column] What is Positive Parenting?

320px-smirc-smilesvg.png Every weekend I am writing my own little advice column so my readers and users can have a place to submit questions for me to answer. I actually received the one below at one of my speaking engagements this week and thought it would make for good Saturday gab.

“People constantly throw out the term: ‘positive parenting’ what exactly is it and do you think it is a good idea?”
-Father, LAPL Speaking Engagement

Positive Parenting can be used in many senses, but when most people use it, I think it is a parenting approach based on three principles:

1. Positive Reinforcement: Using incentive based rule system over a consequence based one.  Rewarding good behavior instead of punishing bad.

2. Encouraging Physical Affection: Some parents are very, as I say, ‘huggy feely-kissy.’  What I mean is lots of physical encouragement with pats on the back, hugs, kisses and holding hands.

3. Constant Verbal Support: Some people call this baby-talk, but it is really about verbal encouragement, soft voice tones and positive outlook.

I decided to answer this question because I think it is a great principle that I actually try to apply when I talk to anyone and often get an open and responsive attitude back.  Whether or not you use/agree with positive parenting, I think the principles of positive parenting are great for any human.  Of course, I would not recommend being physically affectionate with a total stranger, but I do think having a positive attitude and assuming the best in people is a great outlook for life in general.

Happy weekending!

Vanessa

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