You know those days when its not even midday and you’re already wondering if its bedtime yet? It seems like the two year old tantrums has well and truly kicked in with Tobias. I feel like at each stage that we reach, I’m asking when does it get easier! This stage is due to Tobias’ frustration about how he can’t communicate with me! So as always, I turn to friends, the internet and books for advice on how to parent my child. How I not only deal with his behaviours when they arise but how I parent before and after those behaviours to try and avoid them. I’ve found that instead of looking for the right kind of discipline, adapting my parenting technique may be the better solution. So here are some ways that I’m slowly changing my parenting style:
Saying ‘yes’ – i hear myself saying ‘no’ at least ten times every five minutes, twelve hours a day (the other twelve, he’s asleep)! I think that becoming more of a ‘yes parent’ may make a really positive impact. Tobias pushes the boundaries constantly but by saying ‘yes’ in those circumstances where he isn’t going to come to harm, he seems to be happier and I’ve noticed a lot less moaning and whinging.
Ignoring certain behaviours – I’m not saying that ignoring every behaviour each time is the right thing to do but picking my battles is. If I can pick food up that has been thrown and carry on with our activity without acknowledging, it gives Tobias a chance to realise that he’s not getting a reaction so it’s pointless to do again.
Distracting from tantrums – This one i haven’t seemed to master yet, apart from with sweets which isn’t ideal!
Praising more – Praising the excelled behaviour, e.g. good painting, sharing etc; is teaching children the reality of the grown up world.
Paying more attention – The more attention I give Tobias the less he’s gotten frustrated. I love sitting down with him and reading a book or doing a focused activity like colouring. I’ve also noticed he will hold his attention in the subject for longer if I show interest too.
Being more consistent – Consistency is key to not only helping little ones to feel more secure but for them to be able to understand the consequences to their actions. This doesn’t just mean consistency with my own parenting though, it’s best to make everyone aware that looks after him or interacts with him on a regular basis.
Giving options – Tobias is a hard strong, independent toddler, but I have noticed that giving him too much freedom or too many choices confuses him easily. It can be overwhelming, so I’ve been trying to take the pressure off and where applicable give him the choice of two different things. Like two different tops or two different books.
Well there you have it, some of the parenting techniques I’ve been trying and even though it’s early days I’ve seen the benefits almost instantly! I’m not saying this always works, sometimes the tantrum is just inevitable and each child is definitely different, it’s all trial and error! What I am taking away from my new found knowledge, is this is only temporary whilst Tobias learns to communicate his requirements. Theres one thing for certain though, once we’re out of the toddler tantrums, they’ll be another, different challenge to deal with!