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iVillage.com: Discipline Mistakes Even Smart Parents Make

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Using Bribery

Of course, telling your child you'll buy her candy or a new toy if she behaves might work in the short-term. However, such techniques aren't very effective for the long haul. "Kids will think, 'I'll be good to get the reward,' rather than because it feels great to do the right thing," explains Dr. Nelsen. Same goes for praise: Telling a child, "I'm so proud of you!" lets her know that she lived up to your expectations. "The danger is that kids can become so addicted to getting praise and rewards that they won't, say, clean up their rooms or get ready for school on time if they don't get it," explains Dr. Nelsen. Instead, she emphasizes encouragement -- when your child does something nice, instead of handing her a dollar just say, "Thank you! I bet you feel really good about that!" Or instead of "I'm so proud of you," you can say, "You must be so proud of yourself."

(CREDIT: Tooga/The Image Bank/Getty)
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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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