As I was considering this about a year ago, I thought about how overwhelming training can be, especially for those of us who 'didn't get it right the first time.' I decided that we would go about the training and retraining according to our daily schedule and in the order that stressed me out the most :wink: . So, first we worked on the time between getting up and getting breakfast. Then I selected the before dinner time, then the getting home time, and so forth. After the training is complete, we move to consequence/reward.
It has been helpful for me, who wants everything accomplished immediately, to develop the self-control to let some things slide while I focus on one time period.
MJ, as for complaining, I have to constantly examine myself on that one before I can instruct the children. I can even give a 'look' to my husband that has complaining all over it, so I find I must be especially careful to be a good example to my children. Then there is the inventory that needs to be done regarding whether the complaint is valid.
If all of the above checks out I will typically say something to the complainer like, "I know it's hard. What do you think God is doing in your life right now that He would allow this stuff to be a part of it?" (We tend towards direct in our home.) Then we discuss it and apply Romans 1 and *choose* to be thankful and *choose* to honor God. I tell my children that it really is okay to tell God, "I'm not happy about this, but I'm thankful for___ and I'm going to choose to honor you in it by ___."
If this does not bring the child around, I will then tell them that I love them and want the best for them and so I'm going to obey God's word and put a contentious mouth far from me and so they can go do a chore and their school work will be waiting for them when they are done.