Simple logical consequences

Source: realsimple.comLast week, I wrote about some of the more extreme logical consequences I’ve heard about. I thought I would present an alternate view and talk about some of the more simple logical consequences that have proven to be highly effective with my kids.

My friend Manda commented on last week’s post, saying how the Ezzos’ approach to the funnel gives us a very simple, common sense approach to logical consequences. There are some parenting experts, like the authors of Love & Logic, who make us think that we have to get creative with logical consequences for them to be memorable. But some of the more simple consequences are more effective because they relate to the issue at hand. As Manda said, if you can’t handle a freedom, you lose that freedom.

I could not agree more. There are times that I worry that I rely too much on timeout as a consequence, but I always come back to the idea that a timeout is very much a logical consequence. Typically, I issue timeouts because my kids are doing something that isn’t appropriate around other people. Being isolated in their rooms is very much a logical consequence. You can’t behave appropriately around other people, you can’t be around other people. So simple!

Here are some other very simple, yet very effective, logical consequences that I’ve used:

  • Problem: Acting bossy toward your sibling.
  • Consequence: You lose the freedom of playing with your sibling. If you have a bad attitude with everyone, you go to your room (losing the freedom to be around anyone).
  • Problem: Speaking disrespectfully toward mom or dad.
  • Consequence: You lose the freedom to speak. I first learned about this idea from the Mom’s Notes, and I use it all the time. My kids don’t often speak disrespectfully, but I’ll use it when they’re too loud in the car, experimenting with potty language, etc. It’s very effective. Of course, it requires a healthy dose of first-time obedience to get them to not speak.
  • Problem: Whining during a game of catch.
  • Consequence: The game is over. My kids get frustrated if they can’t catch or throw the ball as well as they’d like, but when the frustration turns into whining, the game is over. We’ll try again when they’re ready to play without complaining.

Ultimately, the point of this post is to say that you don’t need to get creative or crazy with logical consequences. The point is that logical consequences are logical, which means that they relate very simply to the problem at hand. And because they relate to the matter at hand, they work!

What are some of the simple logical consequences you’ve used? Are they just as effective as some of the more creative consequences you’ve used?

P.S., The July 4th sale on my eBook, Live in Harmony with First-Time Obedience, ends Friday! Get your copy today!


  1. Wow, those consequences are crazy! I was kind of shocked that someone would actually advise you to do that to your kid! I agree with you that logical consequences need to be logical and simple.

  2. Opps, I posted the comment in the wrong place!! It was supposed to be under the post about EXTREME consequences. Sorry for the mistake!