This morning breakfast DS played with his cup of soy milk again and half of the content was poured on the floor. At first I was a bit angry (well, after eleven months of baby-led weaning I expect him to have some table manners), but immediately I thought of a good way to handle the situation.
Because I wanted him to know the intrinsic value of maintaining a clean floor without blaming him, when I unfastened him from the high chair, I told him that why pouring the milk on the floor was wrong and asked him to wipe the dirt with a cloth, WITH me. As expected, DS was willing to comply, and we made a good wash. DS didn't want to stop wiping!
Yes, my method might be considered a mild consequence from a "discipline" model, but it was also a meaningful activity which was appreciated, done and shared by us together. By reminding myself that we should always be on the same side, hopefully I can determine the real priorities in our shared lives, and can avoid the problem of punishments and/or external rewards which both necessitate a top-down pushing/ coaxing/ coercive approach that is always distrustful of a child's own abilities and motivations.