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Attitude Makeover: Selfish

The First 21 Days
Commit yourself to an FSD (Family Selfless Deeds) project to help your kids recognize what a difference their unselfish acts can make. Here are some ideas for this project:

  • Give part of your allowance to charity. Start a new rule: a portion of weekly allowance must be set aside for charity. Even young kids can put away a portion of their allowance or gift money to give to a good cause. Some families require kids to divide their earned allowance into three categories: money to spend, save, and donate to charity.
  • Do a family sacrifice. Give everyone in the family a big cardboard box and ask them to fill it with give-aways, including a few things they really care about, like favorite articles of clothing, toys, books, DVDs, or CDs. Then have your kids help you deliver the boxes – which can be colorfully decorated by younger kids – to your favorite charity.
  • Play the Gift of Time Game. Everyone in the family puts their name in a hat and then blindly pulls one out. For the next twenty-one days, each family member commits to spending an age-appropriate amount of time devoted to the chosen person. For example, they can do that person's chore, help him or her complete some project, play a game, or just hang out together. It's the time spent that counts.
  • Graduate to anonymous benevolence. The highest level of selflessness is giving away material goods or your precious time without anyone knowing it was you who did it. There is no recognition or rewards. You do it because it's right. This kind of attitude is the ultimate goal of parenting.
Attitude Makeover Pledge
How will you use these steps to help your kid become less selfish and achieve long-term change? On the lines below, write exactly what you agree to do within the next twenty-four hours to begin changing your kid's attitude so he is less demanding and more considerate.

The New Attitude Review
All attitude makeovers take hard work, constant practice, and parental reinforcement. Each step your child takes toward change may be a small one, so be sure to acknowledge and congratulate every one of them along the way. It takes a minimum of twenty-one days to see real results, so don't give up! And if one strategy doesn't work, try another. Write your child's weekly progress on the lines that follow. Keep track of daily progress in your Attitude Makeover Journal.

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Next: Resources >>

From Don't Give Me That Attitude by Michele Borba, Ed.D. Copyright © 2004 by Michele Borba. All rights reserved. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Buy the book at www.amazon.com.

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