Start with the Heart, by Kathy Koch

A great little book that helps you learn how to motivate your kids to be compassionate, responsible, and brave -- even when you're not around!

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Even though we are raising someone who, in my not-at-all-biased-opinion, is the greatest kid ever, there are still days when this parenting thing is hard.

Really hard.

So I'm always interested in reading books full of tips on how to do this parenting thing better, like this new title:

The book seemed like it would be helpful after just perusing the cover, but I did not anticipate that I would discover quite so many wonderful, useful nuggets of help inside:

Author Kathy Koch, PhD, is the founder of Celebrate Kids, Inc as well an international speaker who has influenced thousands of parents, teachers and children, so she's someone who knows a bit about what she's talking about when it comes to this parenting thing.

This book is written to encourage and empower parents, whether what's needed is a breakthrough or just a few tweaks here and there.

Koch asserts that although sometimes we parents feel like we're fighting the same battles with kids who seem totally unmotivated to change, the truth is that every child is motivated and we just need to learn how to unlock his unique heart.

She does this by sharing practical, manageable strategies for motivating our kids toward healthy life habits, including how to:

  • address beliefs that affect behavior
  • respond to consistent complaining
  • increase resiliency and decrease fear of hard work
  • listen longer and teach our kids to know themselves
  • create change that lasts long-term

Plus, she does all of this from a positive standpoint, something that has always been a crucial part of my coaching and teaching philosophy.

In many ways, reading through this book brought back so many memories of my undergrad degree and sitting through my major-required class in motivation. I had let many of these knowledge-nuggets slip from my mind in the decades since then, but what I appreciated most was being reminded of them from a biblical view.

In Part 1, Koch addresses character qualities, the five core needs of kids and how important it is for us as parents to also be coaches. Then, in Part 2, she gets down to the nitty-gritty of how we can achieve it.

Using simple examples, she lays out how to communicate so your children will hear you, how to compliment and correct as opposed to flatter and criticize, and how to turn responses like "I can't," "I don't want to" and "This isn't fun" into "I can, I will, I did."

Who doesn't love the sound of that?

Although not a workbook, this practical book seems so chock-full of wisdom-filled kernels to implement, I marked it up like crazy and made a list of goals to tackle after reading it.

If you care about helping to create positive, character-filled kids in your home, especially those whose desire to be that way stems from intrinsic motivation and not coercion, then you'll want to check this book out.

Each chapter ends with a "Things to Do" section, prompting you to evaluate your own parenting decisions

Grab your own copy here and start seeing your frustration and anxiety about growing great kids melt away while reading the pages of this book!

Do you sometimes feel like pulling your hair out while wondering whether the beliefs and values you're hoping to instill are truly taking root in your kids?  I'd love to hear!  Either leave a comment below or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.

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