Almost all bad attitudes include being selfish, self-centered, and insensitive. But aside from these generalities, it is crucial for us as parents to figure out which of our kids' specific attitudes need our urgent attention. Only then can you change them.
You'll probably find that there may be more than one attitude that needs immediate intervention. Some attitudes may overlap. For instance, the bad-tempered kid can also be defiant.The uncooperative child can also be lazy.The arrogant child may also be judgmental or narrow-minded. Bad attitudes can also spiral into even worse bad attitudes. For example, the bad-mannered kid can become fresh, and the fresh kid can become noncompliant. The impatient kid can become bad-tempered; the poor loser can become manipulative. And identifying your kid's bad attitude may not be as easy as spotting a bad behavior since attitudes run deeper and are often hidden. You can usually see your kid's misbehavior—whining, hitting, tattling, talking back, swearing—but the underlying attitude may be invisible and much more difficult to determine. That means you're really going to have reflect on what you've observed and felt about your kid over a period of time in order to figure out which attitude to focus on.
Begin your emergency attitude intervention by studying the list below. Check off the characteristics that best apply to your child.Then you'll know which bad attitude to start on and where to find it in the book.
Characteristics Attitude Number
□ Know-it-all, smart aleck, Arrogant 39
saying "I'm the best, brightest, smartest," bragging, unrealistic self-appraisal, showing off,
Characteristics Attitude Number feeling privileged or above others, sense of entitlement
I | Incivility, rude, no common courtesy, crude, impolite, interrupts, bad table manners, swears
"Why shouldn't I belch and fart at Grandma's? She can't hear me anyway!"
□ Blows up, angry outbursts, loses control, physically aggressive, short-fused, hard time getting over it, poor impulse control, yells, frequently frustrated
□ Tells lies about grades and scores, copies other kids' work, denies breaking the rules, calling foul for fair, blames someone else for his wrongs, moves pieces when your back is turned
"Why not? Everybody else does."
Q Mean to animals, enjoys humil- Cruel 101
iating others, preys on those who are different, teases and bullies, says unkind things, no empathy
"Look at those suckers squirm!"
□ Wants it right now, rude, insistent, uncompromising, relentless, unreasonable expectations
□ Bossy, dictatorial, wants to be in charge, pushes people around, doesn't listen, won't negotiate, always sets the agenda, won't share
"It's my way or the highway!"
□ Rude, impolite, back talks, whiny, sarcastic, insulting, disrespectful, flippant, glib, sassy, in-your-face
"You don't have a clue, Mom. Don't you know anything?"
□ Hoards, materialistic, consumer driven, has the gimmes, selfish, never satisfied, ravenous, wants things for himself, doesn't share, demands bribes
"Gimme, gimme, gimme!"
□ Can't wait, wants things now, needs instant gratification, won't stand in line, short attention span, trouble relaxing, impulsive
"Aren't we there yet?"
□ Poor empathy, tactless, doesn't think of others' feelings, egocentric, bad case of the "me-me's," coldhearted, selfish, self-centered
"Hey, lighten up, Dude, I was just kidding!"
□ Needs constant reminders, avoids tasks, blames others for own failures, conveniently forgets, denies, rationalizes, accuses others, misplaces things, misses appointments
"How was I supposed to know it was due today?"
□ Envious, never satisfied with who they are or what they have, wishes they could have the good fortunes, qualities, or possessions of others
"She's so pretty, I just hate her."
□ Hypercritical, sarcastic, nasty, opinionated, puts others down, expresses a great deal of negativity
□ Takes the easy way out, poor work ethic, won't apply herself, wastes time, expects others to
do her work for her, may feel efforts will fail, gives up easily
"Can you make my bed, Mom?"
□ Twists your words, blames Manipu- 262 others, wears you down until lative he wins, exploits guilt, plays one parent against the other, pretends to be sick, expects bribes, dishonest, scheming, depends on others to do it for him, employs blackmail, uses self-pity, cultivates false affection or charm
"If you give it to me, I'll be your best friend!"
□ Prejudiced, intolerant of other Narrow- 282 points of view, biased, won't Minded listen, sees only his side, highly opinionated, hateful, bigoted
"All boys are stupid."
□ Defiant, disobedient, refuses to Noncom- 303 do what is asked, rebellious, pliant strips parents of authority, battles for power, seeks total control
"Try and make me!"
□ Feels as if nothing matters, why Pessimistic 321 bother, nothing's going to work, gives up easily, dismal sense of future, assume they won't succeed, dwells on the negative
"What's the point of trying?"
□ Makes excuses, blames every- Poor 337 one else, cries or loses temper, Loser cheats or lies to win, displays bad sportsmanship, doesn't value camaraderie or teamwork, thin-skinned, can't accept criticism, changes rules midstream, quits, fails to congratulate opponents
"Ishould have won."
□ Egocentric, bratty, self above all, Selfish 350 doesn't share, doesn't take turns, puts his needs and concerns above others, doesn't consider other people's feelings, no empathy, poor emotional intelligence
□ No sharing; won't take turns; Uncooper- 364 won't work on a team; won't ative support family or friends; doesn't listen to others; hoards toys, tools, and supplies; argumentative; criticizes others; bossy; doesn't pull her own weight on a team
□ Unappreciative, always wants Ungrateful 377 more, never quite satisfied, oblivious to the luxury or privilege of their lives, feeling entitled, unwilling to reciprocate with gifts or kind acts to others
"This isn't at all what I wanted."
□ Unsupportive, unwilling to Unhelpful 390 pitch in, won't do chores or duties, expects to be compensated
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