Parents should accept the fact that not all kids have the same type of behavior. Some children are too shy, while others are very outspoken. Some kids are well-behaved in front of people, while some are quite difficult to deal with. These different child behaviors only underscore the individuality of each child and should not be viewed negatively.
Aside from acknowledging child individuality, it’s also important to know the common child behavior problems to handle them better. Among these behavioral issues in children are lying, screen addiction, defiance to authority, disrespectful attitude, picky eating, impulsiveness, whining, and aggression. Other children exhibit other negative behaviors such as temper tantrums and resistance to sleeping.
With these facts, parents should learn the ABC of behavior management to effectively respond to problematic child behavior and gain a deeper understanding of why kids act the way they do. It would also help seek assistance from institutions or service providers offering professional child counseling services on how best to address your kids’ attitude problems. The people working for these agencies possess the required skills in effectively addressing kids’ negative behavior, so you’re sure to get valuable tips from them.
Meanwhile, here are six tips on how you could effectively deal with your difficult kids as a mom:
- Be consistent with your actions. One critical way of dealing with difficult kids is to show consistency in handling their specific behaviors. For example, if you usually make them explain why they didn’t eat the meal that you cooked, and then just let the same action pass the next time, it would give your kids the wrong idea that it’s okay with you. As such, be sure to be consistent in how you approach their particular behaviors, so they’ll be conditioned to expect a specific response to them.
- Take note of the ‘triggers.’ You should note the things that set off your child’s tempers and other attitude problems. These triggers could come in many forms: a particular word, an action, a visual or auditory stimulus, or anything that arouses negative behavior in a child. Once you have noticed these specific triggers, you should be careful to avoid them, so you won’t push your child to react negatively.
- Establish your authority and maintain control. One of the worst things you could do is to let go of your authority as a parent and allow your child to think that you’re not on top of the situation. Kids who see or sense that they can throw tantrums whenever they feel like because their parents won’t get mad at them should be quickly made to understand that it’s not the case. Explain to them that they must obey you as their parent and that you should be respected and listened to. This way, your kids would not forget who is in control and who is the authority in your home.
- Listen to, and empathize with them. Children, particularly those with attitude problems, must always feel that their parents genuinely love them. You can show them such by listening to whatever they have to say about their day or what they feel. Also, always be ready to empathize with them, so they won’t feel alone in whatever internal struggles they’re dealing with. With these two actions done with utmost tenderness and love, you can help your kids overcome their ill behaviors and turn them into positive ones.
- Be vocal with your appreciation of their positive traits. Positive reinforcement is an effective means of overturning your kids’ negative behavior into something positive. Educators know this all too well and use it to great effect when dealing with learners. You can apply the same technique by being vocal with your kids about your appreciation of their good deeds or positive behavior. Just make sure to give only honest praises, so your kids will have a reliable means of gauging whether their attitude or actions are good or bad.
- Observe tact when pointing out their bad behavior. Hand in hand with positive reinforcement is observing tact when telling your kids about their negative behavior. While it’s important to point out such a thing, you must do so with absolute care to avoid unnecessarily hurting your kids’ feelings and causing them to rebel against you.
There’s no denying that dealing with children that exhibit negative behavior is a tall order. It can get difficult, depending on the intensity of this behavior. Just heed these six tips, and your task of handling your difficult kids will be much easier.