Toddlers are known to be unpredictable, dramatic and downright adorable! Having a toddler will mean the occasional temper tantrum. While some ages seem more prone to tantrums, such as the terrible twos, tantrums and meltdowns can happen at any time and for a myriad of reasons. Learning how to deal with these emotional outbursts will fall on your shoulders. Remember that as the adult, it is up to you to set the right example! Here are just a few ways you can help your toddler find peace in the midst of a meltdown.
When a toddler is in the middle of a full-blown meltdown, it can be difficult to stay calm. Your ears may be ringing and your wits may be at their end, but it's important to remember that the most helpful thing you can do is remain composed. Try to remember that while you may be an adult who can articulate their feelings with ease, your toddler is still trying to figure their own feelings out. A tantrum is the result of many big feelings in a little body with no way of expressing them in a healthy way. With persistence, your calm nature will naturally transfer to your child, making it easier to reach them with words.
Explain Your Reasoning
Have your child sit next to you and discuss what can be done to help. If your toddler insists on remaining defiant, ask them in a calm voice to join you when they are ready to have a talk. With no reaction from you, you may notice your toddler's tantrums begin to wane. Often, an angry reaction to a tantrum only adds fuel to the fire and can result in shouts, shrieks, and broken toys. Asking to have a sit-down with your child to explain their feelings is a healthy way to settle a dispute and showcases a great example of conflict resolution. If consequences need to be taken, explain plainly why you have chosen such measures. If your child refuses to play nicely in the sandbox at your local playground, explain that due to their behavior, they will no longer play in the sandbox that day, for example.
Create a Calm-Down Kit
You'll notice that a common theme of toddlerhood is unpredictability. The tiniest slight can easily set a toddler off, and while their frustrations can sometimes be understandable, many seem like they come out of nowhere. Creating a calm-down kit will help your child learn to manage their emotions on their own, teaching them that they will not always need another's help to resolve a tantrum. While it's tempting to soothe your child for every meltdown they have, try to let them figure things out on their own from time to time. Sensory items such as squishy Play-Doh, books about feelings, puzzles, and emotion wheels are all excellent examples of what to include in your child's calm-down kit. Allow your child some space to sort out their own feelings and you'll find that they will slowly become more independent and able to manage their emotions in a healthier and quieter way.
Contact a company that offers toddler child care services to learn more.