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Discipline: The Toughest Job You'll Ever Love

Updated: Sep 7, 2018

Discipline is Not Punishment, it’s Teaching with Love. Discipline should always be focused on creating opportunities for your children to develop and strengthen skills that will help them succeed in all areas of their lives.

Give GREAT™ and expect GREAT™. Give the very best of yourself as a parent to your children and EXPECT them to give the very best of themselves back to you. It is when this critical balance is lost that we expect without giving, or give without expecting, that children can become angry, resistant, passive, spoiled or entitled. Children will live into the expectations you have for them. Expect the BEST!

Discipline based on your Family Values. It is important that all discipline come out of the values that your family has chosen to stand on. Discipline should not come from emotions, but from a commitment and dedication to values and standards that your family has agreed to uphold.

Model Behavior: Give your Children something GREAT to Emulate. Children must see and experience others making GREATT choices in order to effectively and successfully emulate those actions. It is not just witnessing GREATT choices and actions that teach, it is being a part of a relationship where values, attitudes, ideas and goals are clearly defined and are part of a collaborative, supportive adult-child relationship.

Make Expectations Age-Appropriate. Dr. Greenspan and Dr. Brazelton tell us “Children can’t be expected to internalize skills and enjoy learning unless they are provided with the tools to learn about and master and understand their world.” That is why The Early Childhood Capables GREATT Learning System™ is such a delightful, yet effective tool. It teaches and then enables parents to discipline their child with fun, age-appropriate exercises and ceremonies.

Give the Gift of Self-Discipline. The goal of all parental discipline is to teach children self-discipline. It is one of the greatest gifts we can give to our children. Helping children to monitor their thoughts and actions, while strengthening their ability to make wise and careful decisions is what GREATT Parenting™ is all about.

Discipline for Working Parents. Make the time to love on, play with and nurture your children, even after a long workday. The Early Childhood Capables GREATT Learning System™ helps parents TEACH GREATNESS, as they play a delightfully great game. The Capables System™ insures that parents and children are involved with everyday household chores and responsibilities in a fun, productive and rewarding way.

Parents Need to Work as A Team. Discipline works best when both parents are on the same page. The Early Childhood Capables GREATT Learning System™ is such a fun, easy, organized and effective parenting toy/tool that it enables parents to become allies in parenting their children, even if they are divorced, This is equally important that if your child spends a great deal of time with their grandparents, or other family members are caring for your child while you work, it is very important that they are using a similar and consistent approach to disciplining so that the children are not being confused. If you are divorced, or if grandparents or other family members are helping you care for your children, make sure that they watch the Capables Training Videos™ and read this guide book so they understand the parenting plan and are helping you develop your children’s greatness.

Be Consistent and Follow Through. In order for discipline to be effective, you must establish your values, expectations and rules with your children and then follow through on your promises of both rewarding and executing appropriate consequences. Your promises are your word and your word needs to be your bond in order for your children to learn that they can trust you to take even the most difficult disciplinary actions.

Do NOT Parent with Guilt. Feeling guilty if you have genuinely done something you regret makes sense, but feeling guilty about working does not serve your children. What serves your child is for you to be very responsible, loving and present the hours you are with them. Do NOT allow feelings of guilt to make you resist executing the discipline your children so desperately need. You are the only parent your child has. They are counting on to teach them their most important life skills. Your children need a great parent, even if you have to work.

Always Discipline with Respect, Never Humiliation.

Humiliation is always harmful and in ineffective long-term. Humiliation breeds resentment, rebelliousness and anger, and stunts compassion, kindness and understanding in a child’s heart.

Corporal Punishment. In a world of continuing and escalating violence, corporal punishment should not be used, or the very last resort. Even as a last resort, there is a grave difference between a swat, and hitting or beating a child, which is completely unacceptable.

Discipline with Poise and Confidence. The more confident you feel around your child the calmer you will feel. With confidence comes a secure peace. As you parent with confidence and calm, your children will learn to live their lives with confidence and calm. Most of the bad decisions young children make are born out of frustration, anxiety and entitlement. The Early Childhood Capables GREATT Learning System™ will teach you to wisely and specifically deal with your child’s frustration, anxiety, fears and feelings of entitlement.

Never fight to BE right. Fight to DO the RIGHT thing. The more you attempt to live this very important distinction with your children, the most powerful and effective your discipline will be. Discipline should not be about you BEING right and your child being wrong. It should be about your willingness to DO the right thing for your child’s benefit even when it is difficult and you modeling that behavior for your children.

Take time to evaluate your disciplinary actions.

Use The Capables F.I.R,S,T, Things FIRST Parenting Review System™ to examine and evaluate your disciplinary actions. Make sure that you are accomplishing what you intend to accomplish with your discipline and that all discipline is educating, strengthening, guiding, leading, encouraging and encouraging your children to become the GREAT™ human beings they were created to be.

Teach your children to know and love God, and teach them prayer. Faith is important. Following our personal faith is important. Teaching our children to develop a personal relationship with God is important. All greatness originates with GOD. Faith fortifies us, encourages us, inspires us and guides us in making decisions about how we will choose to live our lives. Your disciplinary actions will be much more effective and long lasting when they are connected to a larger plan of values, standards and good.


In 2008 Dawn was selected by Oprah Magazine and The White House project as one of 80 emerging women leaders in the nation.

Dawn L Billings is a serial entrepreneur and a communication and personality expert. She has authored over 20 books.

Dawn is the CEO and Founder of The Heart Link Women’s Network, with locations in US, Canada and Australia. She is also the architect of the Primary Colors Personality Test and Insight Tools, founder of OverJOYed Life and creator of the Happiness Curriculum. She also serves as executive director of the Executive Training Resort in Arizona.

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