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Creating a custom chart that reflects predetermined actions is an excellent idea for those that sometimes find themselves struggling to stay on the same path they intended to. Sometimes, we as parents commit ourselves to parenting in a certain way. We hold ourselves to a nobleness of character which is sometimes difficult to live up to. We have decided that when our children behave in a certain way, we will react in a certain way. We have decided that when A happens, B will be the response. This is where the difficulty comes into play.

It is extremely difficult to live up to our own expectancies. It becomes increasingly difficult sometimes, to carry out a disciplinary system, or a reward-based system consistently. This can be due to schedules, hectic days, and emotional ups and downs – a variety of differing reasons. This is why creating a custom chart can be very beneficial. It can outline causes and the outcomes. This helps relieve the burden of, “Am I being too strict?” or “Am I being strict enough?”

The idea is to cover as many areas as possible, and have the chart reviewed by the entire family. If and when possible, have them sign it along with you. This way everyone is aware of the consequences and rewards based on their actions. If, and when possible, have everyone in the family assist in the chart’s creation. This way, everyone has a sense of ownership over their consequences and rewards. An example as to how a chart would work is listed below.

Actions                                                                                    Consequences____

Taking out the trash                                                                                                           Extra 30 minutes of game time

Back Talking                                                                                                                                        Loss of TV for 3 hours

Cleaning Room                                                                                                                        Extra 30 minutes of TV time

Telling Fibs                                                                                                                                          Loss of TV for 3 hours

Doing what you are asked                                                                                                                             Extra play time

Visit our family law blog for more tips.

Trisha Festerling, J.D.

Family Law Attorney

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