Most of you parents might have come across tantrums, meltdowns and mis-behaviors of your growing toddlers and would definitely agree that managing their emotions or regulating their emotions is a bump ride all together. As stressful it is for kids, it is for the parent as well. Then there are kids who would throw tantrums and meltdowns, showdowns are very regular as frequent as daily basis. Parents have their own ways of handling their kids but many of us as parents are not aware of the facts that dealing with self regulation of your child is a game of patience and self regulation first.
Well, you as a parent need to know that simply scolding, time outs and reacting ain’t going to help you find a way. Here’s how you can guide your child and help him or her with self regulation –
Help them with being patient – Whenever you want to give something to the child, do not give it immediately. Help the kid get a hang of patience and know well that you do not get everything in life at jet speed and that you need to wait at times for a short or long period as well.
Involve them in decision making – Smaller decisions like selecting a dress to wear or selecting tiffin snacks can help them making a plan or a decision when in a situation. It will help hone their decision making skills. Start with two options and increase later on.
Playing games that involve controls – This is one of the fun ways to teach your child self regulation while engaging with the child in games like slow down speed up games, dance and freeze game, to name a few.
Acknowledge their self regulation issues – After all, you are dealing with kids and as difficult it is to bear, it is difficult for them to regulate themselves when upset, frustrated or angry. So, its nice to acknowledge their feelings. For example if your child is unable to wait for something are going to give them and want it instantly, you can acknowledge the child saying that you know how hard it is to wait for something and that he would get it, its just a matter of waiting some time.
Celebrate their good deeds – If they show some emphathy or kindness towards others, give them a pat on their back or simply let them know that it was nice of them to do so. This will motivate them to repeat such acts.
Well, Having said that, you need to always keep it on your mind that these are just toddlers and will not robots who would be remote controlled by you. There will be times they would not listen, they would throw tantrums and more. But, if you help them like torch bearer, the will definitely learn and grow into human beings capable of regulating their emotions well.