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Toddler – As parents, we do not only want our children to achieve their developmental milestones but to imbibe good conducts and good behaviors as they grow. Disciplining your toddler requires techniques and skills; otherwise you won’t get it right. Your toddler is yours to raise, so it’s  about time you set aside the triggers or the indifference, as the case may be and get on it.

Here’s how:

Lending a helping hand isn’t always helping. If your child is having a hard time reaching for something, don’t help them until they ask for your help. That way you can decide if they can have it or explain to them why they can’t have it or what they can have instead. Don’t always jump in to give it to them. You are not helping.

Diverting your child’s attention to something else is always more effective than yelling or springing to into action to scoop them away from a perceived danger. You can beckon on your toddler or dangle something that they can be fixated on instead. This can even quell a planned tantrum.

Parents of toddlers think like toddlers. This is true in every sense of it.  Toddlers are always exploring and discovering things. Thinking like your toddler will keep you in check when you want to go into a rage from a mess they have created from trying out things. You will see the fun in what your toddler does and you can join in to guide them to see what is safe,  right and what isn’t. It’s easy to become upset when your child is making a mess. So instead of getting upset and causing a potential tantrum explosion, join in the fun, grab some crayons and color too.

Reward your child for a good behavior. If they have made a polite request, give your attention or give them control over little things. Toddlers are sensitive and if they see that they have independence as well as your permission on certain things, they will continue with whatever good behaviors that earned them the reward. Also you can be sure that there will be no tantrums.

When reprimanding, keep it short and simple. Long or complex sentences won’t have any effect, at best; it can only achieve momentary result. Instead of over talking and making the message ineffective, use short repeated phrases, using the right vocal balance and facial expressions to convey depth.

Don’t be quick to say yes or no to requests. This is very critical in discipline. At that stage of learning and discovery, every opportunity fosters the learning of something new. Take advantage of this to consider your child’s request before you accommodate, refuse or bargain. Saying No all the time isn’t discipline. You may be raising a frustrated child who believes they can’t do what they want to do. But if you allow for some freedom and create limits, your child will master self-control as he or she does not want the privileges taken away.

Discipline is neither spanking nor hitting, it is about creating rules and setting limits for your child’s behavior. It is also not about hauling inappropriate words or yelling, it’s about a conscious but flexible method to wade off the practice of bad behaviors. Aggression does not always yield the desired results.

Some misbehavior will not even exist in the first place once you fully understand your toddler and know what triggers them. This way, you can anticipate a bad behavior and remove or help your child avoid it.

Disciplining your toddler requires a balance of consistence, firmness and sympathy. Remember that your toddler isn’t indulging in bad behaviors just for the fun of it but because it is a normal aspect of their growth and development. 

Stay in check, be compassionate and be positive. You will raise a proper child after all.