Many parents dread dealing with their children when they are upset or angry. These are normal emotions and we all have them. There are ways to deal with toddlers and tantrums. Tantrums are very common and are something that all parents, caregivers and teachers have to find a way to deal with.
1. You have to make a plan.
There is a saying, “a failure to plan is a plan to fail.” If you have toddlers around, there will be tantrums. Toddlers and tantrums go together like macaroni and cheese. As you know this will happen, though you may not know where or when, you need to start to plan for that. You should have more than one plan for different settings. The way you manage a tantrum at home will be very different from how you manage it when you are at a friend’s house, a restaurant or when you are out at the mall. Make a plan for all of the situations you think you will be in with your child.
2. Talk to your toddler after the tantrum.
After the tantrum, talk about what happened. What led to the problem. When you are going into a situation where your child has had a tantrum. If you are dealing with the terrible twos, you may notice a pattern in where and when your child most often has tantrums. Before you go into that situation, you should sit down with your child and talk through all of the consequences of misbehaving and remind them what happened the last time. Of course, this works better with older children but can be one way for dealing with toddler tantrums.
3. Get your child’s attention away from the problem.
When you sense your child is about to throw a tantrum, try to refocus their energy and attention. Toddlers and tantrums do hand in hand with being tired, bored or even hungry. The good thing is that toddlers do have short attention spans so you may be able to distract them and head off the tantrum.
4. Prevent small tantrums from growing into big ones.
How to stop toddler tantrums? Intervene as soon as they begin. If you can nip a tantrum in the bud, you will prevent a tiny tantrum from blowing up into a huge problem.
5. Validate your child’s feelings.
Anger and disappointment are normal for people of all ages to deal with and experience. When your child is going through a tantrum, you should recognize your child’s feelings. This can give you an opportunity to help your child work through their feelings in a positive and constructive way. This may be one way to prevent future tantrums. When you validate and recognize their feelings, you are an ally. When you ignore them, you are an adversary.
6. Journal about the behavior.
When you are dealing with toddlers and tantrums, one good thing you can do is write all the details down. Make notes about where the tantrum happened, when, what else was going on, what you were doing. You may see a pattern that you had not noticed before. Maybe you will see that the tantrums are around meal time, maybe changing the time would impact your child’s behavior. If they always have a tantrum before taking a bath, maybe that is something you can address by talking to them about why they hate bathing.
7. Start fresh after a tantrum.
While you should not give into your child’s demands during a tantrum, you should give your child a fresh start after it is over. You should comfort your child but make sure they did not get rewarded for their behavior. You need to be strong enough to show that they cannot bully you with their bad behavior and actions.
8. Take a time out.
These is a tried and true way to deal with toddlers and tantrums. If you are out shopping, take your child to a quiet place and ride out the tantrum.
9. Reward good behavior.
Positive reinforcement is a great way to change your child’s behavior. If they see that when they behave the way that you want them to and they do not get any benefits when they behave badly, they will learn to behave properly.