There are all sorts of different reasons why kids have temper tantrums. One minute they’re happy in the bath, and the next second you have to replace your bathtub stopper because they ripped it out in the middle of a meltdown. Unfortunately, the younger children are, the more preposterous their demands can be.
Even the slightest change of plans or going against their wishes can lead to a full-fledged emotional explosion. And while many articles may promise to help you stop tantrums altogether, the truth is many kids can’t be convinced otherwise. Unfortunately, temper tantrums come with the territory of having a younger child, and as parents, we have to endure them.
So, the next time you find yourself in the presence of a screaming child who is upset for not getting their way, keep these tips and tricks in mind.
Learn to Breathe
Even though we may have compassion for our children, and we know that they don’t always have control over their emotions and reactions, it’s still hard to keep our cool. When someone is screaming and kicking, even the Dalai Lama would have trouble staying calm.
One of the best things you can do to withstand a tantrum is to learn how to breathe. Deep breathing can help avoid exploding in reaction to a tantrum, and doing something that you regret.
If your child is having a tantrum, take a minute to take several deep breaths, and leave the room for a second if need be. If you start to feel your anger rising, then it’s a good sign that it’s time to calm down. Remember, it’s your job to show them how to regulate their feelings. If you match their angry energy, then you will only encourage their behavior.
Know The Triggers
Many children have tantrums as a reaction to specific triggers. Get to know what these triggers are, and try to avoid them before the tantrum even begins. For example, if you know that your child is going to have a meltdown every time they pass the toy or candy aisle, then go a different direction in the grocery store. Sometimes avoidance is the best weapon.
Use Simple Language
Trying to reason with a child with adult language in the midst of a full-blown tantrum isn’t going to get you anywhere. Use simple and straightforward language rather than trying to deliver your upset child a speech.
A screaming child isn’t going to hear a word of what you say. It’s going to go in one ear and out the other, so you’re better off using simple words. Once the tantrum is over, then you can have a conversation about why the tantrum happened and what the consequences are going to be.