Can’t get your children to change their bad behavior?

Hey parents, do you ever feel like you’re stuck in a cycle with your children?

Like no matter what you do, they still behave the same way, and you really want them to change? Well, I can help you out with that change. Hi, I’m Conrad Ercolono. I’m the owner and operator of Respect Martial Arts here in Agoura Hills, and I’m also the author of a book, a Black Belt in Parenting.

And in that book I teach parents how to achieve the same kind of results a black belt instructor does with children. Uh, in respect, discipline and focus at home. So it wasn’t too long ago, I was a young instructor. I had, uh, been about 13 years in martial arts, and I’d been pretty successful in teaching and teaching adults specifically.

I had been teaching the way that I had been taught to teach and, you know, it was a sort of militaristic style of teaching, but, you know, very appropriate for the martial arts. Well, I started teaching children and what I found. I was getting pretty good results with the children, but for me personally, I was getting burned out on teaching.

I would come home at the end of the day and I would have sore throats, and I would have headaches, and I just, I was just getting burned out on teaching. The thought of teaching was starting to turn me off, and I didn’t know what to do. I thought I was doing the right thing. I was doing everything that I was told to do, but it just wasn’t working.

Well. This all came to a head one day when I was teaching a class, and I had a particularly, Uh, defiant 10-year-old kid in class. And no matter what I said, this kid decided to do the opposite, to the point where he actually made fun of me in front of the class and I completely lost my temper. I yelled at him, I told him, you know, if he can’t handle it, he’s gotta get off the mat, and we don’t behave that way.

And boy, I just lost all of my master instructor and black belt instructor. Cool. And it sent the whole room into silence. And I was, I lost my temper so badly. I was so embarrassed that the parents knew it. And I went over after class and I went to the parents and I apologized for losing my cool, and I apologized to the kid, but it didn’t matter.

They quit martial arts that day. And I, you know, in reflection on this, I thought, I thought to myself, Well, I don’t know what I did wrong. All I know is that I’d let a 10-year-old run my emotions and run my feelings and run me to the point of being out of control. So whenever I, whenever I don’t know what to do, I turn to education.

I try to figure out maybe if there’s some educational source I can find that will teach me how to, uh, change. Uh, so I did that. I went to martial arts books and I read about teaching martial arts, and there was nothing in there that was really different from what I was being taught. I, you know, I read all kinds of different styles and that just didn’t make the kind of changes that I, I needed or had any information in there.

So I turned to books on teaching children in school, how they do it. And yet again, I found great classes or great lessons on how to create structures and classes and how to organize class curriculum, but nothing on really touching the emotional and the motivational components that I was looking for with the children.

And so I really didn’t know what to do. I gave up. I thought I was just going to be ending my career as a martial arts instructor or maybe, uh, teaching children. That’s for sure. But I was sitting at the bookstore and I had read all the books. I thought I should read or look through them, and I looked up, and I saw a section on parenting and I thought to myself, Well, I do teach children.

This is about children. I wasn’t a parent at the time, but I thought, What the heck? I’m going to try this. And I started reading books on parenting and wow, what a difference that made. The more that I read about creating a true connection and using the kind of techniques that parenting books teach on creating a connection with children and getting them to focus on discipline, the better my classes became, and the whole thing hit me.

Wow. This time, this whole time, I could have been teaching like a parent. And so, uh, here we are 20 years later, and now I enjoy the process of teaching. I get great results with kids and now, and I know that in order for me to be able to teach them better, I had to change myself. So, you know, my, my big takeaways for you and, and getting that kind of change you want from your children is number one for yourself.

You know, if you’re educating yourself in a system, like if you’re parenting the way that you are parent and I know you turned out great, but maybe you have to look to another source besides your family for information on how to parent, go outside the system, go to a coach or someone that knows how to teach children and see how, if you could figure out how they do it or go to books, of course, you know.

The second thing, uh, I’d like you to know is that it’s okay to fail. I failed myself. I failed spectacularly, and I was a well-trained instructor, but I still failed in the task of dealing with children. And so, you know, we, we can learn from our failures and if you could take that and move forward, it’d be great.

And I recommend that you become a parent student, you know, become, you become a student of parenting, and you just keep educating yourself because as your child grows older and older, the parenting is going to have to change, and you’re, you might have to get more information on how to do that change.

So, if you find yourself stuck in a cycle, you have to reach outside the system that you’re in for education as to how to break that cycle. And I know that once you make that change, your child is going to make the change too. Hey, I hope you’ve enjoyed the information that I shared with you today.

-Respect.