We’ve all experienced the temper tantrums, the ‘no’ phase, and the dinner time outbursts because their ketchup touched their chips! These things can drive us nuts and can be one of the hardest parts of raising a child; trying to remain calm when your kids are driving you up the wall after a long day at work or keeping the home in order is far from easy, but it can be done. Here are our top tips for finding more patience as a parent.
Remember they’re not doing it on purpose
Despite what you may think, your children are not intentionally trying to drive you crazy. Even if your kids’ behaviour is making you mad, if you take a minute to re-evaluate the situation and acknowledge that the reason for their outburst is not solely to annoy you, you might just find a few extra doses of patience.
Your kids acting wild is pretty normal
Of course, you’re going to want your kids to act like sweet little angels, but in reality, that won’t always be what you get. Much of what your kids do that you wish they wouldn’t is simply a part of their age-appropriate learning and development. That’s not to say you shouldn’t let bad behaviour go unchecked but doing so with a calm attitude whilst remembering this behaviour is normal will help resolve situations much faster.
Don’t talk at them, talk with them
Lecturing your child usually won’t get you very far. I often remember being lectured about cleaning my bedroom and un-loading the dishwasher and would often think ‘if she didn’t ask me with such a mumsy attitude, I probably would have done it’. Every interaction with your child contributes to your special bond and to their learning development. So, why not teach them to be calm and fair but firm like you?
Take a time out yourself
If you find yourself becoming an angry ball of frustration when you find they’ve blocked the toilet with a whole roll of toilet paper again, why not take the time to step away from the situation and inhale a few deep breaths for a minute to diffuse the stress.
Make your expectations clear
One way to get your child on board with your expectations is to clearly outline them in a simple age-appropriate manner. Giving your child a definitive structure will help them to understand concise requests being asked of them and to practice following through those actions accordingly. The more you practice implementing your expectations like this will ultimately keep your stress levels at a minimum and your patience will (hopefully) remain intact.
Look at things from a different perspective
When you feel your patience wearing thin, take a moment to collect your thoughts and try to put yourself in your child’s shoes. By doing so, you may be able to figure out what is motivating them to behave or act out the way they are and respond in a way that they will be able to understand and accept.
Think about what your behaviour says about you
Think about every time you’ve ever lost your patience or yelled a little and remember that children are like sponges. Your little one will learn from your behaviour, so try to consider how your response will be perceived and copied by them before you act. Shouting and losing your temper will likely lead to your child shouting and losing their temper in return, and nothing good comes from a shouting contest!
How do you find patience with your kids? Do you find it difficult or easy?