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BOTM : Calmer, Easier, Happier Parenting

May is here, Mothering Month on is all about me and my memories and investigations inspiring happiness for me and you.

I am a mother to Glorious Gloria and find books a great guide to help navigate through these, sometimes, turbulent seas of life.

Last years epic Motherhood post where I list my top 5 mothering books, amongst everything to do with motherhood in the first 2 years and pregnancy. I really could start a mothering blog, I have an ace name...


Book Of The Month

I saw Noel Janis - Norton on breakfast TV, she was a teacher and used her method on her class of unruly pupils and settled them in a few weeks, for the last 40 years she has been coaching families with her strategies and seen amazing results with glowing reports from once fraught parents to happy calm families. I bought her book Calmer, Easier, Happier Parenting, a few years ago to try and encourage my teen step sons to do more for themselves and Noel's techniques worked!

I return to the book again to help GG be more co operative, she's pretty good. Bribery is working a treat, she LOVES chocolate but Doug the Dinosaur is almost finished and that method can't continue. There's always room for improvement on both sides and I'm ready for some new skills.

Calmer, Easier, Happier Parenting 'The revolutionary programme that transforms family life' is a manual to guide parents through years 3-13, although the methods do work for teens too. Noel recommends to read the book in order and put into practise the first chapter for 2 weeks before moving on.

The first chapter is the ground work and it does take practise because it feels quite un natural and hard to find the right words for DESCRIPTIVE PRAISE. According to Noel, praising children when they do something good encourages them to do more good things and they respond much better than being moaned, nagged or told off. It's easy to notice and mention a child's negative behaviour, because it's so annoying! Focusing on the good encourages more good behaviour.

'Praising with superlatives doesn't work', by saying 'amazing' 'wonderful' 'terrific'' is too vague and general and makes the child think they don't need to improve and according to Dr Carol Dweck, an educational psychologist, praising intelligence or outcomes actually backfires and diminishes motivation as well as performance. The praise needs to be a teaching tool, showing children that we like something they've done so they are motivated to do it again.

What is Descriptive Praise?

1. Notice a little thing that your child is doing right - or even the smallest step in the right direction.

2. Tell your child exactly what you notice. Describe the behaviour in detail.

3. Leave out the over the top superlatives.

For example :

'If your child is eating dinner without a fuss, just describe exactly what you like about their behaviour ' You're eating your dinner without complaining about the food.' or 'You tasted the peas, that was brave.' '

Descriptive praise is specific, true and motivating.

To stop annoying behaviour or bad habits, praise the child when they are being good. For example nail biting ' Look, you're not biting your nails.' Or complaining; wait until there's a break in the moans and say 'You've stopped whingeing'

One has to pay attention and comment on all good behaviour and becomes more powerful when you add a quality, like co operation, patience, courage, self-control, perseverance, etc. Noel says ' the more you mention that your child has shown these positive qualities the sooner your child will be able to see herself as someone who is cooperative, patient, courageous, etc'

This is fascinating. Give it a try, it may take a few weeks to see an improvement, but praising good behaviour seems a rewarding system for both parent and child.

The book is extensive and well worth a read.

Section one is the core strategies, Preparing for Success; ways to reduce a child's resistance. Reflective listening; minimise whingeing. Never Ask Twice; The six step method that teaches children to do what you ask the first time you ask. How to stop misbehaviour in its tracks. Rewards and Consequences.

Section two: Transforming family flash points; getting ready in the morning, mealtimes, sibling relationships, homework, tidying, household chores, playing independently, bedtimes and sleep.

'It has taken the stress out of parenting... I'll probably live 10 years longer.'

Helena Bonham Carter

Try descriptive praise and see how your child's behaviour improves. GG is more co operative after a few days of 'DP' and I look forward to reading and applying the whole book for a calmer, easier, happier life.


I have a free copy of the book to give away to the first comment of your child's improved behaviour using descriptive praise, share your story and inspire us.

Thank you for reading and join Club Cazza for more mothering posts this month including more books, songs and playlists.

And the chance to win a classic cazza fan.

Thank you again for visiting.

Peace, love and happiness,


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