Dealing with Toddler Behavior - My 3 Top Tips
So can you turn the terrible twos into the terrific twos?
Tip 1 - Offering an alternative choice when the answer is no.
The way I've had of coping with these kind of situations is by offering another choice that is just as appealing as what they've asked for but is better for them. Here are some solutions.
- You can't go outside with no clothes on but if you get dressed I'll come and play ball in the garden.
- No more sweets but would you like an apple (my son loves apples but you could replace this with another nutricious snack they love - raisins, dried fruit etc).
- No more TV but we can read your book with your favorite TV character.
Tip 2 - Distract their attention
Here are some distraction tips:
- Distraction works best before they actually get into a full blown temper tantrum. If they're too upset it's difficult to divert their attention away from what is upsetting them.
- If you're outside with your toddler look for things that may interest them in the world around them. Insects, cars, buses, and flowers are all things you can point to, talk about and make sound exciting.
- If you're inside, toys are good to distract them. Show them how to use them and play with them to get them excited.
- Singing songs, being silly, spinning them around, chasing them, dancing to music and playing with them are all good methods of distraction. They can change the mood of both you and your toddler to one of fun rather than confrontation.
Tip 3 - Make Things You Want Them To Do Fun
For example, when potty training my son, it was hard to get him to come and use the potty when he was playing with his toys. I quite often took another favorite toy for him to play with while sitting on the potty or read him a favorite book.
If you want your little one to get dressed and they don't want to co-operate make the whole process fun and get them involved. Sing songs, be silly, make them laugh, let them dress teddy. Whatever they find fun will encourage them to do what you want and is a great technique for coping with the toddler behavior.
Also Remember - Most Toddler Behaviour Is Age Appropriate
Toddlers are building their sense of self and this means they can't see things from other people's point of view in the same way as an adult can. This means they struggle to do things like sharing. Sharing is an age appropriate behavior which with encouragement and learning will actually quite develop naturally as they get older. Of course, there are situations where toddlers may have to share toys with other children but try and make this process as easy as possible by offering another toy or a better distractions. Toddlers see things in black and white and when you take a toy off them and give it to another child, they don't understand the value of sharing so bear this in mind during playtime.
Books On Helping With Toddler Behaviour
Have a look on amazon.com. There are lots of reviews and ideas so you can get an idea if you would benefit from reading the books before you buy.