10 Outcomes You Will Love Before Potty Training

1. Declaration of Independence – As walking and talking, the potty training period is a milestone of independence. Potty training can allow you and your child to Declare Your Independence, you from the controlling, autocratic, punitive potty training methods used by past generations, and your child from the methods using yelling, threatening, ridiculing and even spanking. Both of you declare that the more fun you have in the potty training process, the healthier and easier it will be.

2. Research. Development and Belly Laughs – The thought of potty training can inspire you to do the research necessary for you to develop yourself as a healthy and fun guide during this rite of passage in your child’s life. With your positive and fun approach, the bond of connection and love will strengthen and expand rather than falling prey to distress and concern.

This is such a fun thing to do to begin the day, and during the day when you feel stressed. Belly Laugh. Imitate and act like you are laughing so hard, like someone is tickling you. At first you will have to pretend but within a few seconds, your body will respond and you will giggle and giggle. You may have to get over “feeling foolish” but choose to DO IT anyway. Research has shown that people who do this on a regular basis reduce stress, are healthier and have more fun every day.

3. A Natural Process and Feeling Loved – You can create you child’s transition from diapers to the potty to be a easy one or a struggle. Given guidance, encouragement, and the time to develop, most children will practically train themselves to use the toilet. You can assist your child in this process by using potty learning methods that you determine are healthy and fun.

What does your child want to see from you when she walks into your space? The answer is “A smile, your eyes light up, anything that shows that you are happy to see him”. Isn’t that what we all want? We all want to feel like we are loved just because we exist. Differentiate between your child’s being and your child’s doing. If she does something that you don’t like, make sure she knows that you love her AND you don’t like her behavior.

Getting in the habit of using “this works” and “this doesn’t work” is a marvelous way to stay out of criticism. Criticism is the most effective way to destroy your child’s self-esteem and confidence. Say this statement a couple of times: Children do not have to be made to feel bad in order for them to learn how to behave better.

4. Potty Ready and Potty Learning – Potty training is really misnamed. It might better be called, potty learning. You child develops normally and becomes ready to use the potty, slowly but surely. There are many signs of readiness. Here are a few. She has become curious and wants to watch you use the toilet. He requests that we change his diaper when he is wet. She uses the words for pee-pee and poo-poo or whatever words you have encouraged. He stops what he is doing while he is peeing or-pooing in his diaper. She is dry over longer periods of time.

5. Accepting Bodily Functions – You will learn a lot about yourself as well as your child during the potty learning process. Children accept BM’s and pee with curiosity and playfulness. If given no interference, children have been observed to use their BM as finger paints, smearing it on walls, and then licking their fingers. As adults, when we see this behavior, our reaction will most likely be repulsion and reprimands filled with “yukkies” and “pee-yews” to convey our dismay.

It would be better if the parent simply acted quickly and quietly cleaning up the mess without stressful drama so the child doesn’t associate anything negative with her pees and poos. Allowing pees and poos to be natural functions softens the potty training process and makes it easier. It also is the precursor of the healthy development of sexuality.

5. Singing – Singing ditties with your child makes using the potty fun, even for you. Whenever you go potty and your child is watching or within hearing range, begin to sing this ditty to the tune of “Mary Had A Little Lamb”. Most likely, your child will come into the bathroom and want to watch and sing with you. Imitation will follow.

Where do we poop and pee
poop and pee
poop and pee
Where do we poop and pee
We poop and pee in the potty.

7. Emotional Intelligence – Learning to be emotionally intelligent during this phase of your child’s life, will prepare you magnificently for the phases to come and will serve you well all the way through the teen years.

You may notice that it is one thing to promise yourself to be patient, tolerant and fun loving, and another matter to be it.

Let’s pretend that your child sits on the potty, pees, gets off, pulls up his pants, and within seconds, poos his pants. Might a flash of anger go through your body as your expectation is dashed?

You may be tempted to react allowing your anger to escalate and control you rather than you control it. Instead, FREEZE! Just like the game we played as children, freeze and do absolutely nothing except feel your feelings. If you stay in your frozen state of animation, the intensity of the feeling will dwindle within 30 seconds. Then you make a choice to return to being patient, tolerant, and fun loving. Yes, this takes practice and more practice particularly if you tend to be a bit reactive rather than proactive.

8. Lighten Up! Surrender the Agenda – Give up the expectation that your child must do things a certain way. Children are so creative and they may come up with ways of doing things that “work” but just not the way you thought they “should”. One mom said that her child used the potty chair as a helmet prior to using it for its intended use. Be willing to learn from children. They are little geniuses. When you hear the voice in your head saying “need to”, “should”, “must”, “have to”, begin to recognize that these are thoughts that set you up for inflexibility, keeping you stuck and ultimately increasing stress. I “choose to”, “want to”, “desire to”, “like to”, “am inspired to”, I’d “be happy to”, changes the way we feel about what we are doing. The words we choose to use, either drag us down or lighten us up.

9. Let’s Read – There are so many books for you to read with you child related to learning to use the potty. Reading books with your child prepares him to learn how to read himself as well as use the potty.

10. Celebrating Successes – There is an old but true saying, “What you focus on expands”. With this saying in mind, if you focus on what your child is doing “right” what will you get more of? Yes. More of what you want. If you focus on what you child is doing wrong, what will you get more of? Right again. More of what you don’t want. Focus on your child’s successes as well as your own. Don’t hesitate to praise yourself so your child can hear you. “I did such a good job”. “I like the way I did that”. A healthy, fun potty learning phase will boost your child’s self-esteem (and your’s) , fill him with feelings of accomplishment, and give her confidence. CELEBRATE the adventure of Potty Training.!

About the Author

Karen Glunz-Bagwell is an Educator and Coach. Degreed in Communications, certified as a parenting instructor and a parent, Karen has 30 years of experience as an Educator and Life Improvement Researcher. Karen combines her scientific/spiritual principles with down-to-earth, everyday, practical solutions to raising children, the healthy, fun way.