I was approached by fellow Author Dr. Todd Cartmell to review his new book, 8 Simple Tools for Raising Great Kids. In it, Dr. Cartmell shares eight faithfilled ways we can raise our children. He shares practical advice to build your Christ-centered home and improve relationship with your loved ones.
What I love about the book is easy to read, has brief chapters and his tools are simple to implement. Also, he sprinkles helpful suggestions throughout on important topics such as communicating, listening and influencing.
My favorite chapter is #4 where Dr. Carmell reminds us to be easy to listen to, because I had never thought about what I sound like talking to my children. I asked myself, do I sound like Charlie Brown’s mother which is ineffective? Waa Waa Waa Waa
As a result of reading 8 Simple Tools for Raising Great Kids, I believe my relationship with my children will be healthier.
Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this book review; just passing on a Good Read.
Dr. Todd Cartmell is a popular speaker and child psychologist who received his www.drtodd.net.in clinical psychology from Fuller Theological Seminary. His books include Project Dad, Respectful Kids; Keep the Siblings, Lose the Rivalry and The Parent Guide. Dr. Cartmell conducts entertaining parenting workshops around the country and maintains a clinical practice in Wheaton, Illinois. You can link to his website, designed specifically for parents with Q&A, a parenting blog, and workshop information, at
Please welcome Dr. Cartmell!
Q&A with Dr. Todd Cartmell
- Dr. Cartmell, you have worked with children and parents for more than twenty years and probably seen just about everything when it comes to families. What are some of the biggest issues families are struggling with today?
In many ways, families are struggling with the same challenges they always have, just in a different, more electronic environment, which can certainly make things more difficult. Parents want their kids to be respectful, hard-working, considerate, caring toward others, good problem-solvers, etc. The introduction of video games, the internet, YouTube, and so on, gives kids a highly enticing activity that they don’t want to quit, can quickly become out of balance in terms of time spent with electronics, and can introduce inappropriate material if parents are not careful to set clear and well thought-out boundaries from the very start.
- You’ve identified eight simple tools to help parents raise great kids and build a close family that loves God and one another. Can you tell us a bit about those tools?
Sure. These tools are all extremely important. In fact, I can’t think of one that any parent can do without. Here they are:
Talking – in a way that will make your kids willing to listen to you.
Listening – in a way that will make your kids willing to talk to you.
Influencing – using the power of your words to remind your kids who God says they are.
Connecting – building a strong relationship connection. You must connect before you direct.
Teaching – becoming an effective teacher so that your kids are open to important lessons.
Encouraging – so your words can help your kids see past their failures and limitations.
Correcting – to help your kids learn the right lessons from their bad choices.
Leading – living with your kids in a way that will make them want to follow you.
- Some of the tools you’ve identified seem so simple, and yet sometimes, they seem so hard to implement. Are today’s parents simply overwhelmed?
We all get overworked and overwhelmed at times. We all have our own strengths and weaknesses and enter into parenting with the good, and sometimes bad examples from our own parents. The good news is that there is nothing in 8 Simple Tools that is too difficult for any parent to do. With a little practice and perseverance, we can all learn to change some of the ways we parent and in so doing, can change our families. I have seen kids and families change when parents simply put a couple of these tools to work. Just think what will happen when they consistently use all eight.
- How can we start to implement these principles with our own kids?
Just start somewhere. Each short chapter has a simple tip and there are five short chapters in each of the eight sections. Read through one chapter a week and put those five tips into practice. In two months, you will be using all of the tips. Take the 8 Simple Tools Challenge and put the tools to work for one month. What is the worst that could happen? Will your kids be complaining because you are talking more calmly, listening better, connecting with them more, encouraging them more often, and correcting them more patiently and effectively? Quite the opposite. Your family will be changing before your very eyes and for the better. It is amazing what happens when you use the right tools.
- Why is our example as parents so important?
Our example is important because it will either give credibility or take credibility away from our words. For example, if we want our kids to be respectful, then there is no one in our family who should work hard at being respectful than us. Our kids will see our example thousands of times, no matter what that example will be. As such, our example will either work for us or against us. It will cause our kids to be open to the lessons we teach, or reject those lessons because they don’t see us living them. But if they do see us doing our best to treat others as we would like to be treated, following God with our whole hearts, making mistakes but then getting up and trying again, then they will see an example that they can respect and will want to follow.
Now it’s your turn to read 8 Simple Tools for Raising Great Kids as we’re giving away one FREE copy. We’d love to hear from other Moms and Dads seeking to raise their sons and daughters with godly character. Simply tell us about a ltool you’ve used to raise great kids. Your name will then be placed in our drawing.
On March 7, 2016, we will randomly select a winner. The winner must live in the continental US and supply his/her mailing address to us no later than March 14, 2016. Onecopy will then be shipped directly to the winner’s address provided.