Being at Your Best When Your Kids Are at Their Worst

by Kim John Payne
September 2019 – Shambhala (US)

When children are at their most difficult and challenging situations arise, how can we react in a way that reflects our family values and expectations? Often, when children “push our buttons,” we find ourselves reacting in ways that are far from our principles, often further inflaming a situation.

When our children are at their worst, they need us to be at our best—or as close to it as we can be. Educator and family counselor Kim John Payne, author of SIMPLICITY PARENTING, offers techniques that simply and directly shift these damaging patterns in communication and parental behavior. These grounded and practical strategies will help you:

– Slow down the interaction
– Be more in control of your reactions
– Open up a much wider range of helpful responses
– Sense what your child’s deeper needs are even though they are misbehaving
– Respond in a way that gives your child a feeling of being heard and still puts a boundary in place

Payne’s meditative approach can be done anywhere, anytime; it lifts you out of old, unwanted patterns of action-reaction and prepares you so that the voice you speak with is closer to the parent you want to be. His concrete and simple techniques can help parents and children be at their best, even in the most challenging of times.

Kim John Payne, M.ED., is the best-selling author of SIMPLICITY PARENTING and THE SOUL OF DISCIPLINE. He is the founding director of the Simplicity Parenting Institute and the Center for Social Sustainability. He has served as a school and family counselor and consultant for over thirty years. Together with his team he has trained over one thousand Simplicity Parenting coaches and group leaders all around the world. His books have been translated into over thirty languages. For more information, visit


“The key to helping an out-of-control child is a self-regulated adult. This book proves to be a practical guide to carrying out this centered approach, as well as an easy and encouraging reading experience.”—Publishers Weekly

“Geared toward both parents and teachers, Payne’s guidance will stimulate ideas for reframing how we respond to difficult family situations.”—Library Journal