Facing Your Own Bad Attitudes

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There is an old saying that speaks volumes: "Manners are better caught than taught."The best way to learn manners is by emulating others.Think seriously about what kind of a model you are presenting. Could your child be catching this impolite attitude from you? Is your behavior teaching him to be courteous? For instance, do you consistently treat your kids politely? Have you ever corrected your own impoliteness in front of your child? How do you treat your parents? Friends? Strangers? How would you honestly answer this question: "If my kid watched my manners, would they be worth catching?"

Which of your own manners might need tuning up? When your kid is rude, do you remain courteous and respectful, or are you sarcastic, cynical, or disrespectful? What about the nonverbal messages you send? Do you ever roll your eyes? Smirk? Shrug your shoulders? Walk away?

How do you behave in public? Do you ever cut in at the front of a line? Swear at the other driver for taking the parking place you were getting ready to move into? Interrupt your friends? Talk during a movie? Speak loudly on your cell phone in a restaurant?

What is the first step you need to take to tune up discourteous behaviors in yourself as an example to your kids? Write down specific changes you need to make and are willing to take.

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