Most children will have a rebellious phase in their lives as they grow up and try to find their place. It is quite unsettling for most parents when their once obedient, sweet and caring children change all of a sudden.

Rebellion is mostly characterised by angry outbursts, temper tantrums, bickering, breaking  of rules and slamming doors.

When this happens, it can be exhausting and challenging for many parents. Rebellion is mostly associated with adolescence but it goes away with time. However, here are tips that can guide you on how to deal with your child.

Establish boundaries and set consequences for breaking the rules

Remember that you are the parent and set some ground rules to guide the child in differentiating right from wrong. Do not be afraid of disciplining the child if he/she breaks one of the rules. However, ensure that punishment is suitable for the child's age.

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Acknowledge good behaviour  

Compliment your child on good behaviour and accomplishments however small. Compliments show the child that you are proud of them and motivate good behaviour. Acknowledge their baby steps towards positive change.

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Accept that the child is not perfect

Understand that the child is not perfect and that they will often make mistakes. Even though you want the best from your child, control your expectations.

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Focus on one behaviour at a time

If the child is defiant, it will be tiresome and exhausting to address all the issues at the same time. Focus on one issue at a time and pay maximum attention to it.

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Ensure the discussion ends in a win-win situation

Whenever you are having a conversation make sure that nobody walks away angry or feeling like they lost.  Engage with the child and allow them to play an active role in coming up with the solutions. Listen to their suggestions and consider them.

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Seek guidance for your child

In case the child continues to be rebellious,  seek help from a professional. In some cases, rebellion points out to deeper issues that the child may be struggling with and which may require therapy. Do not be ashamed to seek help as it is for the benefit of the child.

Managing defiance is an uphill task for many parents. Nevertheless, cultivating a good relationship with the child has proved to be effective in dealing with defiance. This is because it makes them safe to express themselves whenever they encounter challenges so that it can be addressed before it escalates.

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