Build a Sense of Security

Children with a sense of security feel safe and know there are people they can count on. Here are some suggestions for building a sense of security:

Set and share expectations.

  • Let them know what the expectations are.
  • Be aware that unrealistic demands can cause resentment, hurt, disappointment, or anger.

Give constructive feedback.

  • It should be descriptive, not judgmental.
  • It should be specific, not global.
  • It should be immediate, not a reflection of the past.
  • It should be task involved, not ego involved.
  • It should be about behavior that the person can change.

Establish logical consequences for inappropriate behavior.

  • Relate the consequence to the behavior.
  • Be concerned only with what is happening now instead of punishing for the past transgressions.
  • Avoid the use of a critical or punitive tone of voice.

Avoid labeling children and help your children avoid labeling themselves and others.

  • Label the behavior, not the person.
  • Labeling is disabling.

Celebrate when errors are discovered. Trial and error is a valid way of learning.

  • Everyone makes mistakes. No one purposely makes mistakes.
  • Use mistakes as an opportunity to teach, rather than to blame, label, or embarrass.
  • Admit your own mistakes.

Help your children feel safe.

  • Discuss unfamiliar places beforehand.
  • Encourage new activities. Start with simple activities. Your children feel safer trying.
  • Share childhood experiences.

Create a positive environment.

  • Model positive behavior.
  • Praise your children so that they become comfortable with praise.

Find special time.

  • Try one-on-one time with each of your children.
  • Do activities together with your children.
  • Set aside some time each day to show your love.

Some fun ideas.

  • Leave love notes.
  • Create a list of positive terms.
  • Make bedtime a special time.
  • Leave a welcome note if they get home first.