How many times has your child had a tantrum and you responded by yelling back at them? or you openly voiced your disappointment in their behavior by shrieking/grunting/public disapproval?
I’m not perfect by any means, and unfortunately; while infrequent, the above happens here too. Here are 3 tips that can help you in the process of practicing better ways of disciplining, and set you in the right path of a more peaceful connection with your child, leaving fewer hurt feelings behind.
1) Don’t bribe- the child then gets the idea that even if they don’t want to behave a certain way or do a certain thing, they should do it anyway because it they will be “paid” for it. Instead, reward the child with time. Experts have deemed at least 15 minutes of quality one on one time with your child absolutely important everyday. They allude good behavior to how much time the parent spends with the child, doing something the child would enjoy while offering them praise.
As parents, we should make a conscious effort to spend quality time instead of using bribery to gain desired behavior.
2) REDIRECT- not just the child in this case, but ourselves as well. When you as an adult notice your energy draining and you are leaning more on the edge of frustration, walk away or redirect your attention to something else. Take a deep breath and walk away until you have collected your emotions and dealt with them. Likewise, when your child starts acting a certain way, redirect their attention. If you are in the grocery store and they start throwing a tantrum, ask them to help you pick the fruit or find something on the shelf, etc
3) Give more attention to behaviors you like instead of behaviors you don’t. There’s a common quote that says, “rain on the grass, not on the weeds” This principle is ideal when dealing with kids. Sure, correct them when they are doing something wrong but don’t continue to nag or harp on that behavior..instead find the positive ones and glorify them so the child knows the best way to garner your attention is not by acting out but rather by acting well.