Anokhi DIY / Culture & Lifestyle / Parenting Tips For Managing Tantrums

Parenting Tips For Managing Tantrums

Anokhi DIY Culture & Lifestyle Jul 15, 2014


    How to keep your cool and discipline calmly when your little one throws big tantrums. 

    If there's anything that can push parents to their edge, it’s when your child has a tantrum. Traditional South Asian culture varies in its approach to managing tantrums, ranging from allowing a tantrum to take full force and dictate the whole space, to using harsh words and spanking in attempt to control the situation.

    South Asian families living in Western countries are challenged with accomodating different perspectives and social norms in discipling kids. Adapting your parenting techniques from how you yourself were raised is a difficult process, as it means changing established behavioural patterns.

    But it’s worth trying new techniques and finding what works for your family to ensure your child is being raised to the best of her potential. Here are simple strategies to try next time you confront your little one’s tantrum.

    Breathe, Pause And Step Back

    The intensity of a tantrum can trigger you to react too fast, resorting to ways your parents disciplined you, patterns that you yourself may want to break from. Reacting quickly and emotionally doesn't allow you to stop and assess why your child is having the tantrum.

    Your child might simply be exhausted from a long day or unable to explain how she is feeling, as she hasn’t developed the ability to express emotions with words. When you feel yourself reacting and getting upset, this is the time to breathe, pause and step back until you’re able to see the situation more clearly and model the calmness you'd like your child to mirror.    

    Acknowledge Feelings

    When your child is calm enough, help her identify and name how she's feeling so that she feels in control of her behaviour. It’s important for a child to experience a parent’s empathy and compassion for their pain, and discussing feelings and warm physical touch, like hugs, are part of that.

    Use Time-Outs As Necessary

    A prolonged tantrum requires consequences and time-outs are suitable for these episodes. A time-out is just as good for you as it is for your child; you don’t have to resort to spanking or harsh words to achieve the outcome of a disciplined child. If you're not sure how to get started with time-outs, these tips are helpful.

    Reward Good Behaviour

    When you encourage your child by acknowledging her good behavior, she will start to seek attention through positive behaviour. Find at least two times in the day to spend a minute or two describing the good behavior you notice. All caregivers need to be on the same page with discipline techniques for improvement to be made, so if your little one is in daycare or looked after by others, be sure to agree on consistency.

    If after persistently employing positive reinforcement and it's not working, find a way to reward good behavior in a way that aligns with your South Asian values and how you are raising your family. You can also download free reward charts here.

    Keep in mind that just as it will take time and repeated effort to change how you deal with tantrums, it will also take your child time to modify her behaviour patterns. There will be slip-ups along the way, but with consistent rules and warm encouragement, you will soon start to notice improvement in the frequency and intensity of tantrums. Raising children is a lifelong journey, and as long as you are committed to improving as a parent, it can only get better from here.

    Featured Image: sunfieldcenter

      Yvonne Sinniah

      Yvonne Sinniah

        Author

        Yvonne Sinniah is a Relations Advisor focusing on helping individuals achieve success in personal and professional environments.  She is on a mission to meet a need in today’s society where developing and sustaining meaningful relationships while on a journey to fulfill career and life ...

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