Nothing replaces a good therapist working with you, and I hope that you will find my blog posts inspiring but keep in mind that I am only reporting on what I am learning and experiencing as I make my way along this journey of behavioral changes.

This post is going to be short and sweet. It’s about looking for opportunities to reinforce the good stuff and pre-empting the bad behaviors by redirecting them into positive experiences.

My toddler is clever. She can smell a rat and already she knows we are trying to change her behavior. She is full of resistance and making more fuss than ever before. We have had to take smaller steps than before and we are looking at the littlest things to reinforce. Here’s our list:

- affection
- peaceful behaviors
- nice touching, nice use of hands
- kindly asking for attention
- good waiting (patience)
- following directions, especially on the first request!

Repeat particular phrases over and over that reinforce the good behavior:
- I like when you’re calm. It helps me help you.
- I want to know what you need. Good asking/telling daddy.
- When you are ready to tell me, I will listen. (reinforces: calm gets you what you want)
- I like when you play nice with me.
- That’s good waiting! Mommy likes it when you wait nicely for her.
- When you are calm, mommy can help you.

Stay tuned as our journey continues…

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