Managing your own anger when things get heated will make it easier to teach kids to do the same. To help tame a temper, try to be your child’s ally.
While your own patience may be frayed by your child’s negative emotions, it’s during these episodes that you need your patience most. Reacting to kids’ meltdowns with yelling and outbursts of your own will only teach them to do the same. But keeping your cool and calmly working through a frustrating situation lets you show and teach appropriate ways to handle anger and frustration.
Teaching by example is your most powerful tool. Speak calmly, clearly, and firmly — not with anger, blame, harsh criticisms, threats, or putdowns. Of course, that’s easier said than done.
Remember that you’re trying to teach your kids how to handle anger. If you yell or threaten, you’ll model and ingrain the exact kinds of behavior you want to discourage. Your kids will see that you’re so angry and unable to control your own temper that you can’t help but scream — and that won’t help them learn not to scream.
Be clear about what is and what is not acceptable without using threats, accusations, or putdowns. Your kids will get the message if you make clear, simple statements about what’s off limits and explain what you do want them to do.
Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.
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