It's hard when we feel like we are doing everything right and sometimes it backfires, our little ones are talking back. Acting out. Things seem off as one minute they were fine and now there is attitude, they are full of anger sometimes or are extra testy. It's easy not to take it personally or to feel like you did something to cause their new attitude. So what to do. How to figure out what is going on?
Before we just jump in and assume they are now angry kids we need to understand that there are SO many things that can have an impact on their behavior and temper.
I mean think about it. As adults we are fine one minute and then can have a hot headed temper the next and nobody questions us because we are adults. Maybe we need to just accept kids have bad days too, they are figuring out life as well and they have these HUGE feels in their tiny bodies.
Sometimes kids deal with changes in BIG ways. I know when I am faced with a new life challenge I tend to get loud, frustrated and sometimes I tend to take it out on those around me too. Imagine springing this life change on a kid and expect for them to just deal. No it's going to be hard. So what do we do when we know our kids are going through things. Big or small. When they are faced with new changes in life. New friends. New family members. Or just new attitudes for no reason.
We HELP them.
We help reassure them that it's okay to have feelings. To be angry and sad but that we have to try to talk about how we are feeling with someone we feel comfortable with because sometimes when we get angry we tend to want to react physically. Sometimes our kids want to kick, throw, hit. We have to remind them that hey yeah IT IS OKAY to be angry sometimes but we need to try to shift our anger into communication through VOICE not reacting with an angry tone or by using our hands to hit.
Try to keep it positive. Distraction is important sometimes especially when our kids are young and they are just over the top angry. Distract them with a book or sometimes all they need is a hug and a reminder that they have valid feelings but it's okay to sit in a quiet space alone and to collect ourselves before talking.
DO NOT take it personally. Because most of the time it isn't. They just have these big feelings and we are the main person in their lives where sometimes we take the attitude. We deal with the fits and the temper. It isn't personal we just happen to be there.
Focus on strengths. This one is a big one. Sometimes when our child acts out often we tend to constantly point out that they are always angry or acting out and we forget that they have a lot of positive strengths too. Remind them. Let them know that you notice when they have a positive attitude. "Great attitude today, you almost got upset and angry but instead you had a great attitude and chose to react in a good way". Those little things go a long way. EVERY day is a step forward for a child with temper issues.
Be patient and understand that working on a temper isn't an over night thing. Understand that it can be a while but every day is progress.
Choose you battles wisely. I feel like this is a big one because a small fit or tantrum to them can be a huge trigger for us and we want to react. But sometimes we need to just breathe and understand that they are just having a bad day or we need to redirect our OWN behaviors to a positive one. Sometimes when our kiddos react in a negative and LOUD way to fight we want to get loud too and a reaction is JUST what they want from us. Don't give in redirect and distract. Sit them down "I know you are upset I don't want to fight with you let's talk about this"
Parenting is no easy thing. All we can do is our best every day and sometimes when our child acts out constantly or loses their temper often and quickly there is a reason. We can try to talk to them, change the way we react, help them control their behavior and breathing when they want to act out. If not we can look further for help but we HAVE to remember that when you give big feelings to tiny little people they are going to struggle sometimes. I am a grown up and I am faced with big feelings and I struggle OFTEN.
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