Raise your hand if you've experienced your child having a tantrum. I'm pretty sure anyone reading this would indicate they've seen this behavior before. You are not alone! This blog article will get into some nuts and bolts on how to deal.
Let's start first with parenting resources. Most of us barely have time to manage our households- and then to be expected to read up on parenting?! There will be some positives, though, if you consider reading the following book: 1-2-3 Magic by Thomas Phelan. I will mention some other resources at the end of this article, but if you seek any book/parenting program, this should be your number one go-to.
1-2-3 Magic is essentially a behavioral management program for kids- and parents! It uses counting and a clear disciplinary approach to parenting. Here are a few things to remember:
- Your child is not a little adult.
- You make the rules.
- Stay consistent.
- No monologues.
- Follow through.
- Use time-outs and reverse time-outs.
Other resources include No-Drama Discipline by Dan Siegel and Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child by John Gottman. They propose:
- Discipline is essential.
- Pay attention to your child's emotions.
- Validate a child's feelings.
- Assess your parenting style.
- Label emotions in a way your child can understand.
- Watch your emotional response.
The health of your relationship with your significant other can also be of paramount importance in how your child behaves and reacts. Some great resources on healthy marriages and relationships include The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman, What Makes Love Last by John Gottman and The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, also by Gottman. In these books, you will have opportunities to practice more effective communication skills and develop healthier bonds. This in turn will provide a more safe, calm, stable and loving environment for your child. If those things are in place, you should see tantrums and acting out diminish.
Remember: To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today. -Unknown (www.parenting.com)
Meghan Reitz, LCPC, NCC, has worked within the counseling profession for over 17 years. Her therapist experience includes providing individual, couples, family, group, and crisis counseling. She also speaks with companies and groups on mental health and wellness topics. Learn more about Meghan here.