A loving and caring adult is the most important factor in a life of a child. This is true for all kids, our own included. This has been my mantra for as long as I remember. Kids need our unconditional love. They need to know that we not only love them, but they need to know we care. Loving and caring are not the same. I think we all agree that we love our children all the time even when paint is on the wall. Caring means to be thoughtful, loving and gentle. When we yell at our kids are we being the loving and caring adults that they so desperately need to thrive. I do not not think so. As a parent we must always react in a way that is of love for our children.
Here are some ways you can stay calm when helping our kids work through their emotions.
Sing do not scream – Responding with a singsong tune immediately reduces your level of stress and releases endorphins that change your mood. In addition, if the song does not change your mood your little one’s reaction to your signing voice will. You can choose a classical, R&B or hip-hop tone to get your message to your child.
Always smile – Another trick I have mastered is to smile whenever I engage him in conversation. I smile even when I may be a bit frustrated, tired and overwhelmed. I look at him smile and say yes while attempting to offer a reasonable response to his request. To me it is very important to acknowledge our little ones. It gives them a sense of security in knowing that his mom is always ready to answer and meet his needs. It works even when you are answering the same request from your toddler for the 100th time. With a 2 ½ year old and a 6 month old at home while my husband travels for work I have been pushed to the point of wanting to scream and shout more times than I would want to admit. A simple smile helps me to forget about my adult problems and focus on keeping them happy.
Run away screaming – When I am really up a wall with my toddler I starting running and screaming and invite him to chase me. His face lightens up with a smile at the thought of me being silly. The smile on his face, the energy spent running and the fun of thinking of something new to scream releases endorphins that make me happy along with my toddler. I usually run in a circle while he follows closely screaming words to a familiar nursery rhyme or I will repeat his name repeatedly. He really gets a kick out of this and we usually end up on the floor laughing out of breath together.
Invite your little one to the dance floor – Get up and moving with your little one. Most of the time when our little ones are running us up the wall is because they need to burn some energy. Why not invite them to run up a while with dance. The only thing more fun than dancing, is being asked to dance when you least expect it. A slow or fast dance makes for lots of smiles and giggles from your little one.
Get laughing – Get your toddler laughing with a funny face or all over tickles. If you have a child, this one does not need much more clarification. Inviting your child to laugh is an instant way to distract them him from their emotions or a tantrum.
Change the scene – Another way to help you and your child on a difficult day is to pack them up and leave the house. A change of scenery helps your little one learn and explore a new environment. Get some retail therapy in, get a bite to eat or visit a local park. If you do not have a mall nearby try a target or some similar place, where you can strap the kids in the stroller and wander the aisles with your thoughts.
Parenting and childhood should be a happy time for both you and your kids. What I describe in this blog are ways that we can adjust in the short-lived moments of frustration with our kids. If you find yourself experiencing prolonged feelings of frustration and anger towards your children please seek help by getting a baby sitter to give yourself a break and calling a medical professional to talk though your feelings and emotions.