For the Parent Who Is Tired of Nagging….. #heartparenting {Motivate Your Child Book Review}


We’ve been struggling with some issues in our home lately that is driving this momma batty….

The attitudes….having to remind our kiddos over and over and over and over to do their homework/get ready for school/pick up after themselves….the indignation when we let them know that they’re responsible for cleaning up their own messes…

In the midst of all of these struggles I saw a description for a book called “Motivate Your Child: A Christian Parent’s Guide to Raising Kids Who Do What They Need to Do Without Being Told” by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller RN, BSN {cue “Hallelujah” chorus}.

From the book description:

Learn What Internal Motivation is and How to Develop it in Your Child

You will learn:

    • How to build a strong conscience to strengthen internal motivation
    •  How faith changes kids in practical, down-to-earth ways
    • Ways to help self-focused kids think of others
    • A strategy to help kids who tend to blame, rationalize, or defend
    • Ways to use consequences for heart change
    • Specific heart-based strategies to develop responsibility and initiative

It seems like our whole disciplining strategy involves holding something fun over our kids to get them to comply.  Meaning, when they are misbehaving we threaten to take away something they want until they either decide to behave, or lose their privilege.  Are we the only ones doing this with little to no success?

Here is where understanding the conscience and learning how to internally motivate children comes into play.  “Motivate Your Child” gives practical advice on teaching kids this internal motivation.

“Strong-willed children know what they want and are not easily deterred. Why? Because children who are characterized as “strong-willed” already have high levels of internal motivation and are less affected by external motivations. These kids challenge the typical behavior modification system of rewards and punishment. The suggestions in this book are just the tools necessary to guide these kids in the right direction, opening up new parenting strategies for weary parents.” (p. 10)

If you’ve hung around my blog much at all, you know that my oldest is EXTREMELY strong-willed.  We learned very early on that redirecting a strong-willed child is very, very difficult.  New parenting strategies for these weary parents?  Yes, please!

Fortunately for us, this book addresses everything from sibling bickering to cleaning up after oneself {even if they don’t feel like it}.  Although our kiddos are young, I like that the techniques are for young kids as well as teenagers.

Although I knew that disobedience and certain attitudes were heart issues, I didn’t know what to do about them.  Motivate Your Child gives practical loving ways to address heart issues in your home.

One of the chapters addressed valuing correction – not only from the children’s standpoint but also from the parent’s.

“The reality is that many parents feel irritated or annoyed with the correction process, in part, because they often feel that they’re dealing with the same things over and over again every day. Or they’re busy trying to get things done, and they’re put out because they have to stop and correct a child.” (page 63)

This is absolutely us.  It never occurred to me to value the process of correcting rather than getting tired of repeating the same things over and over.  They go on to say that “the most important conversation you have with a child in a day may happen during correction time.”  I love that small tweak to my perception of correcting!

“Much of the work of conscience development has to do with developing awareness and new ideas, then practicing them. That’s why God created families to be a place of growth and development.  Understanding the conscience provides more tools for accomplishing some of the goals every family has. Kids become more sensitive to internal promptings of the conscience and the Holy Spirit, and maturity and responsibility are the result.” (p. 94 – emphasis mine)

Before I started reading this book, our mornings before school were very, very stressful.  I was constantly on the kids’ cases to do the next thing then the next and the next to get ready for school.  I have slowly started implementing some of the suggestions for helping the kids to keep an eye on the time and to be in charge of remembering the next thing that they need to do.  Our mornings have definitely improved, though there are a few more methods that I need to be better about using.

This book is packed with helpful tips and tools built on the foundation of the Bible.  The stories are based on families that Dr. Turansky & Joanne Miller have seen in their practice.  I’ve already marked up much of my copy of this book, and I highly recommend it for your parenting resources library!

To find out more about this book and how you can get $150 in bonus resources (up through 1/31/15) or to read articles addressing specific parenting topics, visit

Join us for a Facebook Party and enter to win some prizes!

MYC_fb party

Join us on Thursday evening at 9:00 pm EST for the Motivate Your Child Facebook Release Party hosted by National Center For Biblical Parenting on Facebook.  Dr. Scott Turansky will answer your parenting questions and there will be lots of prizes including one full year of FREE HOUSEKEEPING valued at $1500.  RSVP on the Event Page.



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