KYLIE Jenner and Travis Scott have raised some eyebrows with their "self-discipline" method for raising their two kids.
Travis explained their seemingly liberal approach, with appears to put choices – including bedtime – into their children's hands.
Kylie and Travis are parents to four-year-old daughter Stormi and a four-month-old son.
In a CR Men interview in September 2021, Travis revealed that they gave their toddler Stormi quite a bit of independence.
“We try to do a more natural vibe [with parenting], like more self-discipline," he said.
"Like, ‘Okay, you know you got to go to bed at nine, are you going to stay up till 11 or are you going to go to sleep now?’ And it’s so cool [to hear her say], ‘I’m going to sleep ya’ll!'”
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At first glance, taking the “self-discipline” approach may not seem that great an idea.
Travis was quoted as saying that their method includes asking Stormi when she wants to go to bed, for example, leaving her to make the decision between going to sleep at bedtime or staying up later.
Stormi apparently chooses bedtime, and parents everywhere will be in awe that she so happily chooses to go to bed at the right time.
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We all know that toddlers just love to choose bedtime as the time to tell you about their day, ask for a drink, make another trip to the toilet, or pick that exact moment to find their favorite toy to sleep with (the one that has been missing for months).
So, is there actually something in teaching your child self-discipline? Let’s take a look.
Teaching “self-discipline” is all about teaching your child how to control themselves.
Children who learn self-discipline will be better equipped for life: they will be able to face life’s challenges head-on, manage stress, and make healthy choices when you are not around.
From choosing to turn off to TV or games console to do their homework to resisting the temptation to sneak snacks after mom has said no, self-discipline can help kids become responsible adults.
When there is a lack of self-discipline, parents end up taking more responsibility for their child’s behavior.
This can lead parents not only to become nags, but to end up doing more for their children.
Some children may not suit a self-discipline approach. They find it hard to ever be spontaneous, and they may end up always needing to be in control.
This can impact them as they go through life when things happen out of the blue or when they need to allow someone else to take the lead.
And of course, self-discipline may not work for parents who like to be in control – so if you’re a mom or dad who likes things done exactly how you like it and when you like it, you might find it hard to implement self-discipline in your child.
My advice? Strike a balance. Encouraging children to be independent and think for themselves is important, but it’s also important they don’t feel under pressure to make the right choices all the time – and it’s ok if you sometimes step in to take the lead.
THE RIGHT WAY TO USE THE METHOD
First, have some structure. Kids thrive on the predictability of routine, so make sure that you create a similar schedule every day.
This way they know what they should be doing and when they should be doing it.
Next, telling a kid “because I said so” isn’t helpful. Kids respond better when they understand why, so give them a good reason for getting their homework done now.
Having an underlying reason for your rules will make them more likely to understand that your rules serve a purpose.
If they're not doing what they need to do, natural consequences can be a great life lesson.
For example, next time your child forgets their homework, try not to rush to school to help stop them from facing the consequences.
Instead, find ways to make sure that they can’t forget their things, like by setting up a bag station by the door and having them pack their bag the night before.
If you need to make the consequences yourself, let your child know what they will be in advance so they can make a choice. The key is to ensure that you follow through on your consequences and are consistent.
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On the flip side, when your child demonstrates good self-discipline, make sure you acknowledge it. Getting praised for making good choices increases the likelihood of your child doing it again.
Finally, be a good role model. Kids are always watching and learning from their parents, so make sure that you make it a priority to model self-discipline.
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