Redirection. 1-2-3 Magic. Continuous reinforcement. All of these are wonderful techniques for teaching your child how to behave in a civilized manner, but if you have a particularly strong willed child, they can fall short. Try redirecting a determined despot. Works for two days till they catch on. 1-2-3 my butt. Continuous reinforcement turns into expecting a treat for every non-defiant gesture.
There is salvation! Many other parents have told me behavior charts are the answer! Immediate, visual feedback with fewer negative consequences works wonders. Incentives are huge!
But like any promise of salvation, there is always a disclaimer, usually involving interpretation of the Promise Land. I had my ideas of how a child would earn stars on a chart. My little girl had her own, and the discrepancy was alarming; hence: A Six Year Old’s Guide to Earning Stars On A Behavior Chart.