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Does all the discipline advice out there seem impossible?


You’re supposed to do this. Or you’re not supposed to do that.

And here’s the kicker: when your child is acting up and you try the latest advice, it just doesn’t work the way it’s supposed to. So what are you doing wrong?

The truth is, most classic parenting approaches don’t work for a lot of children.

Each child is unique. So a one-size-fits-all approach just creates frustration. Stop making this simple mistake and you’ll start eliminating frustration today.

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The biggest discipline mistake

The biggest mistake is disciplining a child contrary to their nature.

When we approach children contrary to their nature, they often react negatively. Adults then react to a child’s negative reaction with disciplinary tactics to try and get them to comply. They just go around and around in a cycle of frustration that doesn’t work.

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When you honor your child’s true nature, discipline takes on another look because it’s supportive to your children. They are more cooperative and responsive to discipline that honors them.

What do I mean discipline them true to their nature?

Each child is born into this world with a unique nature and level of energy. In my work with children, I have discovered 4 basic types of children who express similar tendencies in their body language, behavior, and personality:

—The Fun-loving Type 1 Child: Naturally buoyant and random, these children have a gift for ideas.

—The Sensitive Type 2 Child: Naturally subdued and connected, these children gather details and make plans.

—The Determined Type 3 Child: Naturally swift and active, these children push things forward.

—The More Serious Type 4 Child: Naturally logical and analytical, these children perfect the world around them.

As a parent, you have an intuitive understanding of your child. These 4 Types are just a tool to help you understand your children’s tendencies even more clearly.

Knowing your child’s type will help you create a more mutually cooperative relationship.

Discipline for different Types of children

Let’s look at a typical parenting approach: Time Out.

A fun-loving Type 1 child as described in The Child Whisperer system is naturally social. A long, solitary time-out for this child feels like a day of torture. Given their high energy, they’re not likely to just sit still anyway.

A more serious Type 4 child has a still, reflective nature. Their movement is lower. In fact, if you send a Type 4 to time-out (especially if it’s in their room), it may actually feel like a reward.

If you need to discipline a child, do it in a way that honors their true nature…

—Turn cooperation into a game for a fun-loving Type 1 child.

—Speak gently and reassure a sensitive Type 2 child.

—Give that determined Type 3 child a motivating challenge.

—Make discipline a private experience for a more serious Type 4 child.

All 4 types of children will respond well when their needs are met and voices heard.

Skip the advice—customize your parenting

Stop trying to sort through all the advice of what you should do and start doing what your child’s already telling you will work.


This article comes from Carol Tuttle, author of the best-selling book, The Child Whisperer. Carol’s book helps parents understand their children on a deep level sot he whole family experiences more cooperation.

Read the book or discover more about the 4 Types of children here.


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