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Temper Tantrums & how to avoid them

Childs temper tantrum The day starts out beautiful! The sun is shining, the birds are singing and then the clouds roll in. The wind starts to blow and the thunder starts to roar. All of this a metaphor for the dreaded tantrum. As a parent we have all had to deal with them from time to time. On a good day (When you are at your best) this may be no more than a passing storm. On a day when your off your game however, you may get pulled into the maelstrom and make some common mistakes, or worse yet you might start to sound like your parents.

Below are some common pitfalls to avoid and tips you can use to move past the storm and back to the singing birds:

  1. You raise your voice or yell when your child throws a tantrum - Do not answer out-of-control behavior with out-of-control behavior. Lead with kindness and be a compassionate observer. Determine if your child is having a tantrum because they are trying to get something or if it is out of frustration. If your child is having a tantrum because they want ice cream before dinner - ignore the tantrum (you need ensure that you do not react with any negative verbal or with physical cues). If it is out of frustration comfort them with a hug and reassurance. If contact makes them more upset stay close but give them the space they need.

  2. You give in to your child's tantrum - Never reward a tantrum it just reinforces negative behavior.

  3. You Punish your child for having a tantrum -If your child is having a tantrum they are out-of-control. The tantrum itself is probably frightening and punishing enough to your child without having you add further punishment to it.
    Never punish a tantrum! A tantrum should have no consequences, positive or negative. It happens and then it's over.

  4. You take your child grocery shopping at 2:00 am when they usually have a nap - Know your child's limits and triggers if they will be more likely to react with a tantrum when they are tired or hungry. Plan outings to the store or other errands when your child is fed, rested, and healthy.
Tantrums can put a strain on an otherwise good time. It is best to avoid them hopefully by avoiding some of these pitfalls your child will have less frequent tantrums.
Temper tantrums, however fun they may be to throw, rarely solve whatever problem is causing them. ~Lemony Snicket

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