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7 Ways to Deal With Your Child’s Tantrums

7 Ways to Deal With Your Child’s Tantrums

Toddlers and temper tantrums are something that go together. The child is attempting to express their outrage at a complex world through these radioactive-like “melt-downs.” Parents are tasked with remaining calm and patient during these episodes. The toddler is striving toward a sense of independence, yet is far to young to understand that their safety may be at risk. What’s a parent to do? There are proven methods to redirect or distract the child without being punitive. These tips will help a parent get through these tumultuous years, only to face them once more throughout puberty.

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1. Stop it before it starts.

Let the child know ahead of time what is going to happen. “Bedtime is in ten minutes.” or “You can have one more turn before dinner time.” In this way, the child is able to anticipate an event without being surprised by it. Talk with the child throughout an activity. For example, discuss the items that are being shopped for, what is for dinner, or the child’s day. In this way the toddler has more things to think about than becoming angry or frustrated.

2. Distract. Distract. Distract.

 

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    Fortunately, very young children are easily distracted. Put some rice or beans in a Pringles© can, replace the lid, and let the child shake it. Give the child a wooden spoon and pots and pans to bang on for a while. Flip through a magazine and point out the bright pictures. A picture book serves as a great, quiet distraction. Give the child a warm, relaxing bubble path and engage in water play. Take a nature stroll around the backyard.

    3. Provide simple choices.

    Letting a child make their own choices helps them feel more independent and in control. Limit the choices to only two things. Ask, “Would you like to wear the red or the blue shoes today?” The choice to go barefoot has not been provided as an option. Or say, “Do you want milk or apple juice for lunch today?” This eliminates soda as a choice. Instead of asking if he or she wants to wear shoes or a drink for lunch, be specific and limit the child’s options.

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    4. Stay calm and take a breath.

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      Dealing with a rising temper tantrum is difficult for any parent. Breathe and count to ten before confronting the issue. If a parent is upset, the child can pick up on the emotion and become easily frustrated. When it is safe, simply walk out of the room or walk outside. It may be preferable to place the child in his or her crib for a few moments, so you can collect yourself and calmly deal with the situation.

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      5. Allow the child to cry out.

      Letting the child simply cry out his or her frustrations is a kind of release valve in this situation. This is especially true when the tantrum has not been stopped in time. Sometimes it is simply best to ignore the child and allow him or her to cry out the anger and frustration. Stay in the room, but walk a few feet away while refraining from making eye contact. You might try not talking to the child until the tantrum is over and then engage the child in an enjoyable activity.

      6. Give a hug.

      While it is possible that your toddler may be engaged in some unlovable behavior, a firm hug may be just the thing. Scientists say that a hug helps the child feel more in control. The step helps the child feel better in a time when they may be feeling powerless and unhappy. A simple hug is also a way to let the child know that it’s okay to get upset sometimes.

      7. Offer a snack.

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        Being hungry or tired are at the top the list for a toddler having a blow-out. Provide a fruit cup, yogurt, or other healthy snack and allow the child to eat quietly. It’s a kind of time-out for both parent and child, as the child is allowed a little space to breathe or think things through. Often dealing with a temper tantrum need not be drawn out or complicated.

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        Last Updated on January 21, 2020

        The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

        The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

        Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

        your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

          Why You Need a Vision

          Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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          How to Create Your Life Vision

          Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

          What Do You Want?

          The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

          It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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          Some tips to guide you:

          • Remember to ask why you want certain things
          • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
          • Give yourself permission to dream.
          • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
          • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

          Some questions to start your exploration:

          • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
          • What would you like to have more of in your life?
          • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
          • What are your secret passions and dreams?
          • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
          • What do you want your relationships to be like?
          • What qualities would you like to develop?
          • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
          • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
          • What would you most like to accomplish?
          • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

          It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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          What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

          Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

          A few prompts to get you started:

          • What will you have accomplished already?
          • How will you feel about yourself?
          • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
          • What does your ideal day look like?
          • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
          • What would you be doing?
          • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
          • How are you dressed?
          • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
          • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
          • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

          It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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          Plan Backwards

          It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

          • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
          • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
          • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
          • What important actions would you have had to take?
          • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
          • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
          • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
          • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
          • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

          Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

          It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

          Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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