As parents, we are entrusted with the biggest responsibility towards the society in bringing up children who are compassionate and intelligent. It is also our responsibility to sow the seed of discipline in our children right from their tender age. Disciplining in the form of punishments, time-outs and restrictions do not go down well with children in this generation. It all worked back then, with our parents. But children now tend to listen to more of suggestions and empathy from parents rather than the above-mentioned methods of discipline. This article is going to deal with how to effectively discipline your child, how to handle the terrible twos, strategies for disciplining children and some useful tips for parents trying to discipline their child.
The word “discipline” is derived from the Latin word “disciplina” which means to teach and learn.
Hence, the first step to effectively disciplining your child should include teaching them the right behavior vs. wrong behavior and explaining to them the consequences of behaving a certain way. By doing this, the child learns how to make the right choice next time over.
Give your child all the positive attention they crave for every day. Lack of this is what causes negative behavior in their part in order to make us notice them and acknowledge their actions.
Use encouraging words for little actions from them. This will boost them up and in a constant effort to impress the parents, children will ultimately discipline themselves.
We all know the ancient wisdom “spare the rod, spoil the child”. Sparing the rod necessarily need not mean spoiling the child. Studies have proved that even a mild form of violence towards children instill a huge amount of fear in their tiny minds and will in no way help them to become a better version of themselves.
Talk openly to your children on a daily basis about their hobbies, likes, dislikes, everyday activities in school, etc. Reward them for the many great things they do. Compliment them with lots of love for their little achievements. This will build a high level of trust and understanding with you and your child will encouraged to open to you.
On the whole, keep in mind that effectively disciplining your child is rooted in helping to learn how to make the right choices for themselves and not in punishments. Be steady in the attention, rules and boundaries you provide to them.
The Terrible Twos
The terrible two is a phase in the child’s life where their dependency on us adults and their need for freedom contradict each other. The result being terrible mood swings, temper tantrums and oppositional behavior towards every person in the house. But, to make you feel better, not every child will go through this stage. you are a lucky parent if your child does not go through this; although I doubt, since you are reading this article!
Let us first understand why the terrible twos are indeed terrible:
One fine day, when you find your little monster who is attacked by the terrible two bug biting, hitting and refusing to do things your way, you will stop for a split seconds before pulling your hair apart and wonder, “where did the sweet little baby cooing in my arms disappear?”.
You are probably worrying about where you went wrong. But that’s not it. At this stage of life, your child is going through some major changes. They are suddenly realizing that the world doesn’t revolve around them, and they will not get everything they desire in life. As adults, it is easy for us to accept this, but think about the little minds which cannot digest these hard facts. It only makes it worse for them because they cannot even communicate these feelings to their parents.
Be a little more patient with your child when they are not on their best behavior, because understanding them, re-assuring them with loving thoughts and hugs and being there for them when they need you the most is one of the most successful ways of floating through the terrible twos.
How To Discipline A Toddler Who Hits?
Your child is not bad if he hits, and you haven’t failed as a parent because of their behaviour. Sometimes hitting others in the mind of the child is just an experimental gesture which will subside over time because analysing such things are their way of learning their immediate environment. Here are some quick pointers to keep in mind while encountering your child who hits often:
While the child is hitting you or someone else, mild words like, “No, that doesn’t feel very good,” or, “I can’t let you do that,” or “please don’t do that because it hurts” might be helpful.
A reactive reaction from us may just make them more aggressive in their behaviour. The child does not understand why you reacted in a certain way towards him, such as yelling, grabbing the arm by force, or punishing him with a slap. In order to comprehend your actions towards them, they try and repeat the same behaviour to see how you are going to react this time.
Parents can safely assume that their child is only hitting when he is upset about something because he has some fear instilled in his mind. Taking them away from that situation and distracting them with other fun activities and later explaining gently the situation is a very powerful antidote to their fears that trigger the hitting action.
Effective Strategies For Disciplining
Use praising to your advantage
Establish a set of house rules
Redirecting their attention to something their own age
Allowing them to experience the consequences of their actions
Developing a serious tone or firm voice when you do not approve their behaviour.
Some Quick Tips For Disciplining Toddlers
Know what triggers your child and try to avoid such situations at home
Don’t get too emotional at that moment. Instead take some time out for yourself and then address the issue when you are calm
Praise your child for their good behaviour too
Set some expectations from your end and let them know the consequences of not meeting your expectations also
Children understand visuals better than audio, so practice the habit of show and tell.
Most of you must have stopped shaking your heads approving of every point mentioned above and now are seriously pondering over these tips. Start to implement these and we assure a significant change in your child’s behaviour in no time!