Every once in a while, your toddler will throw tantrums and act up when faced with intense emotions. Even the calmest children have these moments. Dealing with a wild toddler makes you dread social settings as you never know when they will unleash their inner lion.
Fortunately, you can save yourself from this constant worry using these simple tips;
Identify their triggers
Children often throw tantrums when they are hungry, tired, or want something they are not getting. Knowing what makes your child wild helps identify specific solutions to help the situation and find alternatives.
It could be because they do not want to have a meal you made for them. In this case, note the food they do not like and make an offer of their favourite snack when they manage to finish the meal. This changes their attitude toward the meal as they look forward to the treat that follows. This applies to other triggers. Find active solutions for them that will work in the long run.
Reward good behaviour
Instead of only focusing on consequences and punishments for bad behaviour, praise good behaviour as well. Children become more rebellious when constantly punished. Praising them for good deeds, however, motivates them to do good often.
You can devise an accountability chart and in it, give points and rewards for their little improvements. This is a good way to track your child’s behavioural growth as it shows their progress.
Give them choices
Instead of offering your toddler ‘take it or leave it’ circumstances all the time, allow them to once in a while make a choice. This makes them feel like they are in control of the situation and what they end up with was their preference. Offer different options for what you would like them to do without having to fall victim to their demands. Know that you are still in control but want them to think they are.
Oftentimes, unruly behaviour requires parents to have an aggressive stand. Let them be aware of your boundaries and have consequences when crossed. Employ rules and routines to avoid a power struggle between you and your toddler.
Hear them out
At their age, toddlers have not fully developed clear speech. Therefore, communicating their feelings may not be the easiest thing to do. Tantrums are one of the ways toddlers use to communicate. As much as you won’t get what they are trying to say, listen for what they could be implying with their actions. Try and find meaning by assessing the environment and circumstances at hand to find out what could be irritating them. They could be disturbed by something in some instances and are not merely acting up.
Toddlers have emotions like the rest of us. Unfortunately, their ways of expression are limited. Knowing how to deal with your wild child goes a long way in building your relationship with them and keeping you sane.
Featured image: English tenses