Don't make deals with your kids, and definitely don't bribe them, he says. Rewarding behavior that's expected of them only makes the cost go up later, he explains. Rather than promising ice cream for completed homework or chores, let them reap the internal reward of doing good things.
Also, don't interfere with natural consequences. So, for example, if a toy breaks, sympathize with your child, but don't run out to replace it, he says. The idea is for children to learn resilience and overcome challenges now, while they're in the context of a supportive and loving home.
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The key, experts say, is to set boundaries and enforce them.
Chores, allowances and summer jobs (preferably manual labor to teach empathy and perspective) all help show kids the link between actions and consequences – a critical ingredient for empowered children and adults, Taylor says. "Spoiled children are fundamentally scared children because they have no real control of their lives. Their actions don't matter. And a fundamental component to mental health is the belief that we have control over our lives ... If something's not going well, we can do something about it."