There are times when we do over step the mark when it comes to discipline and our child.
We all know that screaming and shouting gets us nowhere, yet if your child suddenly lets go of your hand and darts off into the road, our initial reaction is to scream and shout.
It is perfectly normal and understandable that we do. It gets your child’s attention and makes them stop in their tracks. Exactly what we wanted them to do.
It is only natural for your child to respond by crying when something like this happens, they hear the urgency in your voice and they understand they were about to do something very wrong. Even if they do not understand what danger it was, they recognise the fear in your voice and this will frighten them.
At times like these it is perfectly acceptable to hug and comfort your child, they had no intention of actually physically harming themselves nor did they set out to frighten you.
But do ensure you explain why you reacted in that way.
Punishment after an incident like this, does not work and has no learning benefit at all . They have already learned the lesson.
Sadly there are times when we do shout and scream for very petty offenses too. In this instance children become so used to be yelled at, that it no longer has that shock effect and they no longer take their parents seriously.
Once in this habit it is extremely difficult to break. The stresses of life and the lack of sleep and the other hundred and one things we need to deal with on a daily basis, makes it so easy to just shout and yell at our children.
You have to break this habit!
The easiest way to break this habit is to stop and think, before you feel the blood boiling and before you even open your mouth, stop and take a step backwards.
Have a think about ” Are you about to overreact?”. If so, go away for a few minutes and then come back and deal with the situation. Once you are in a more controlled frame of mind.
Speaking with a low, firm voice and focusing on the actual behavior and not your child is the positive way to deal with bad behaviour. If your child has drawn with crayon on the wall, give your child a cloth and ask them to rub it off.
If they have thrown something, then they are going to pick it up and put it away.
This is teaching them that actions have consequences. If your child refuses or kicks up a fuss then you up grade to punishment.
Time out is the most common technique and works well for all ages. The child is removed from the room and asked to stay in a designated area for a minute for every birthday they have had.
A 2 year old would stay in time out for 2 minutes, a 3 year old for 3 minutes etc. Effective discipline comes from not backing down. What you say will happen, is going to happen.
If you back down to the tears and the tantrums, then all you are doing is reinforcing the bad behaviour.
What discipline do you use?