Friday, August 12, 2011

Brain Rules for Baby: Practical Tips

Medina has a nice re-cap at the end for those who want the Cliffs Notes version:

- Leave the baby alone at first
- Take in an extra 300 calories a day
- Eat fruits and veggies
- Do 30 minutes of aerobic exercise a day
- Reduce the stress in your life
- Have a social structure of support (friends, family, other parents - PEPS

- Check-in with your spouse twice a day
- Schedule sex regularly
- Develop the empathy reflex with your partner
- Reconcile deliberately
- Balance the housework load
- Address your sticking points (see John and Julie Gottman)

Smart Baby: Seeds and Soil
- breast feed for one year
- talk to your baby a lot - describe everything you see
- create a creative space
- play opposite day (see Ellen Galinsky)
- make play plans (Tools of the Mind)
- don't hyper parent
- take a critical look at your own behavior - and make changes as needed
- reward hard work (vs. talent or intelligence)
- trade for digital time (with time reading a book, etc...)

Happy Baby: Seeds and Soil
- chart your child's emotional landscape (make a list)
- help your child make friends of the same age
- speculate on another's point of view (to help children also practice seeing things from someone else's perspective)
- read together
- develop an empathy reflex with your children
- practice verbalizing your feelings
- save up for 10 years of music lessons
- guide your child toward a $50,000 career

Moral Baby
- have clear, reasonable, and unambiguous rules
- deliver rules in a consistently warm and accepting environment
- reinforce good behaviors with praise
- explain the rationale behind rules
- punishments should be firm, immediate, reliable, safe, and tolerant

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