What’s the best way to discipline your child?

The reality is… what works for little “Johnny” just might ruin little “Suzzie”. Each child is different. Sometimes VERY different. And in parenting, one size does NOT fit all.

To make it all work with our 11 children, Margie and I use the R.O.L.E. model method. We learn the personality of each child and whether they are an R, O, L or E.  That then defines the type of discipline we use.

Curious to learn more?!

Watch the video above for the full lesson!

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Full Transcript

MARGIE – Why do some children respond to certain discipline and others don’t? And how do you know what’s best for each child?

JOSHUA – Yeah, that can be maddening for a parent. What we discovered early on is we had Esther, and we were like, “We’ve got this parenting thing down.” We sort of figured out what makes her tick, and then Joshua and Jared came around, and it was completely irrelevant. So what worked for Esther did not work for Joshua and Jared and subsequent other children. So what makes the difference for your children? Well, to help you understand that, I want to tell you a quick story. The other night, we had some friends over. They’ve got a number of little children. We still have little children in the home, and they were all running around, and we were having this lesson, and we were teaching them some stuff, and talking, interacting, the adults were. And the children were just driving us crazy. And so I looked over to Enoch and I said, “Enoch. Your behavior is inappropriate. Sit down, and be quiet.” And immediately, boom. He looked around, sat down, and it was done.

MARGIE – On the other hand, Eve, we knew, words were not going to help. So I picked her up, physically restrained her. This is what we’re doing now. She sat on my lap. Now, a lot of parents ask us, how do we have such well behaved children? We get that all the time. Now let me tell you, it’s because we took the time to learn their individual learning styles and their personality style and their pain points.

JOSHUA – Now this is really important to understand that in parenting, one size definitely does not fit all. So what works for one child very likely won’t work for another child. And often, children are very different from their parents. In other words, what you think would motivate you or would inspire you very well may have completely no impact on one of your children.

MARGIE – You know, we have a model that really helps us and we want to share it with you today. We call it the ROLE model. R-O-L-E.

JOSHUA – Yeah. So to understand the ROLE model, I want to take you back really quick into medical history. It used to be that when people got sick, doctors would throw herbs or medicine or liquids at them and they discovered that some things worked and other things didn’t work. They didn’t have a model for why something worked and why something didn’t. Then Louis Pasteur came along and realized that there’s stuff called bacteria and there’s penicillin and there’s actually a cause and effect thing going on inside of our bodies. And once they had that model, that allowed all of modern medicine to begin to roll forward at a drastically accelerated pace. We could heal people because we could discover what was going on and we had a model for addressing the problem.

MARGIE – So we wanted a model for our family! And as we said before, we use what we call the ROLE model. And let me tell you about the first letter, R.

JOSHUA – What does it all stand for?

MARGIE – R. The letter R on ROLE model. R stands for Rock. Now this is a child that tends to be quiet, they’re really grounded and consistent, wouldn’t you say? Stubborn, like a rock. They’re a really good listener and they’re like a counselor or a therapist or a comforter. They give a lot of comfort.

JOSHUA – Yeah, lots of comfort. The O in R-O-L-E stands for the Organizer. Now, the Organizer, as you may have guessed, is very organized. They tend to be great at math, at music and drama. They’re very observant and very intuitive about all the stuff that’s going on around them. So think about great engineers or actors or musicians. Most of these people tend to have this Organizer personality type.

MARGIE – Now the L. The L stands for the Leader.

JOSHUA – That’s Margie, right?

MARGIE – And several of our children are Leaders.

JOSHUA – That is very much so.

MARGIE – They’re naturally assertive. They like to take charge. They love action and getting things done and you can think of maybe like a CEO, a prominent politician or other people that are in the forefront, leading the way. Right?

JOSHUA – Anybody that’s just out there making things happen, that’s the Leader. And that’s Margie, right. Okay. And the E stands for the Energizer. These are the happy optimistic people. They love to help.

MARGIE – Like Joshua.

JOSHUA – Right. They are natural people persons and salesmen and they’re… think about the great motivators and speakers and cheerleaders. Anyone that’s out there just, inside of a family or organization, just keeping things fun and lively and engaging… those are your Energizers.

MARGIE – That’s right. Now the type of personality your children are defines the type of discipline that you use. It’s very important.

JOSHUA – Yes. So think about a puzzle piece, right? Like, a certain personality is going to have a certain learning style and a certain receptor that’s going to connect with them and resonate with them.

MARGIE – For example, Enoch. He has a lot of organizer. So when we pointed out his behavior was out of line, boom. He just immediately complied.

JOSHUA – Right. So he had a certain behavior that was going on, and we fit in the discipline style we knew would resonate with him, and immediate compliance. Eve, on the other hand. She’s got a lot of the Leader in her, just like her mother, right? So when we just said words to her, they just rolled right off her. Especially at that young age, the language of restraint was the language that she understood. She understood action and getting things done, and so when Margie went and picked her up and set her down on her lap and folded her arms around her, she understood that language. “Oh, I need to sit still.”

MARGIE – Now I know. Now, if it had been Jared, who is the Energizer in the family, we would have threatened to isolate him to his bedroom.

JOSHUA – Remember that time we had the sliding glass door and we had a bunch of people over and he was going crazy? And we banished him outside. It was a nice day. But we banished him outside, and we had the glass door, and he could see what was going on.

MARGIE – He could watch all the fun and not be a part of it. Now that’s horrible for an Energizer. They don’t want to miss out on any fun.

JOSHUA – Just brutal. Finally, if it had been Brigham, who is the Rock in our family, I could have just given him a stern look across the room, like. Brigham.

MARGIE – I’m disappointed in you.

JOSHUA – Exactly. I’m disappointed in you. Or I’m really sad, or a sad look. Like he’d really hurt my feelings or whatnot. That would have done the job. Except usually Rocks are not your behavior problem.

MARGIE – That’s true.

JOSHUA – So it would have been rare that he did it anyways. But if it had been him, that would have done the job.

MARGIE – That’s true. In the end, you need to remember that what works for little Johnny just might destroy little Sue.

JOSHUA – Now this is really important, because each child is so different. It’s not just that it wouldn’t work for them. Some things literally will disrupt the child, and really could damage and hurt and destroy them if you’re not doing things in a way that really resonates with them. So our challenge to you today is to spend some time and really observe your child and to discover what your child’s ROLE is, and then adjust… ROLE, as in R-O-L-E… and then adjust your discipline and parenting style accordingly. And you’ll discover that where there’s a more accurate fit, the more you can resonate with who the child is naturally, then the more they will respond, and you’ll be amazed at the response you’ll get.

MARGIE – True. So true. We would love to hear about your children and their ROLE and how you discovered it and what makes a difference in your family. So feel free to comment below here and tell us all about it. 

JOSHUA – We would absolutely love to hear all about it. So. Can’t wait to hear your story. Thanks so much. Talk to you later.

One Easy Way to Trick Your Child into Loving Dishes
(And Other Hard Things)

One Easy Way to Trick Your Child into Loving Dishes

(And Other Hard Things)


Family Fun Miracle 

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