If only children came with a remote. Parents could rewind and prevent their child from spilling yet another glass of milk. They could fast-forward through the crying fits and stop bad behavior barely lifting a finger. Obviously, no such remote exists, but thankfully these parenting tips do. Who doesn't love a well-behaved child?
7 parenting tips to get your child to behave properly and the whole world will thank you.
From the moment we find out we’re expecting, we think of all the wonderful things we’ll teach our sweet baby. Knowing it's our responsibility as parents to teach them to behave, we cannot imagine how difficult it can be. While each child is different, teaching children to behave properly both, in and outside of the home.
1. It begins at home.
Parents often struggle with getting their children to behave properly, especially during the toddler years. While children typically outgrow this phase, it is important we use this stage of their life to teach them to do what we ask when we ask them to do it. Yes, it can prove to be difficult, but every minute you spend in teaching your child to behave is geared towards making them a wonderful human being. Believe it when we say their friends, teachers, coaches and future bosses will thank you for it.
Unless your child is in immediate danger to himself or others, you have some time to stop and think before you react. Your next action could be any number of things based on the child's bad behavior. Taking the time to pause before you react can help defuse an emotional situation and can help you respond more productively.
3. Understand child behavior and development.
When you understand how a child develops both mentally and physically, you will be better able to deal with their behavior. Children rarely do things because they are inherently bad. Most of the time children have emotions and thoughts they can’t express properly yet. Those frustrating feelings turn into a tantrum or other “misbehavior”. Many books, websites and children’s experts contain information about child psychology and development. You don’t have to become a pro, but a little research can help you pick a technique best suited to your child’s development and behavior.
4. Don’t shy away from discipline.
Has your child ever thrown a tantrum while at the grocery store? More often than not, a child does this when he knows he can get away with it. And what better place to do it than in a public setting that will leave your parents too embarrassed to react? Don’t fall into the trap! If your child misbehaves in public, calmly remove him from the area and assert whatever discipline you would at home. If you give your child a time-out, find a spot to seat him in and do just as you normally would. Your child will begin to understand that location does not matter—it’s never ok to misbehave.
5. Try not to hold your child to a standard most adults can’t obtain.
As adults, we get upset when things don’t go our way. Sometimes we act poorly and say mean things. And no matter how old we get we will always have some difficulty expressing our emotions productively. Many parents expect their children to behave properly yet most adults have a hard time doing so. Having realistic standards greatly decreases you and your child’s stress level and will lead to getting a better handle on your child’s behavior.
6. Set clear and simple expectations.
At home, you have a certain set of rules you enforce. Those rules might be slightly different when you go to a restaurant, someone else’s home or church. Make sure your child understands each set of rules. This can be confusing at first but if you are consistent your child will eventually get it. You could help by making “behavior cards” for your child with things they can do and things they shouldn’t do for each location. Include a picture association for behavior like talking, playing, eating, etc. Laminate the cards and let your child refer to them when they start to behave in an improper way.
7. Reward positive behavior.
Focusing on creating positive behavior is more productive than trying to prevent negative behavior. Set up a reward system to keep track of positive behavior throughout the day.
The most important step in teaching your child to behave properly is to recognize that they are not perfect. Naturally, we think our children are the greatest things to enter this world, and by our standards, they usually are. However, children need guidance to be the very best versions of themselves. That’s not to say we should tell them what to do and who to be, but when we spot faulty behavior, it’s our job as parents to correct it.