Child behaviour is one of the biggest challenges in raising young children. You need to have so much patience, discipline and sacrifice to shape good behaviour in them. Particularly in younger children, sometimes behavioural issues can cause problems for them as well as parents and guardians.
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Child behavior is one of the things that are at times out of your control, but with proper management and care, it can be managed nonetheless. According to Amy Vogelaar, licensed children’s teacher and co-founder of Love Parenting UAE, child behavioural issues are usually indicative of seeking a connection and that it’s totally normal.
“Babies and toddlers, do not have the cognitive ability to see things from another person’s perspective and are egocentric because of their limited brain development,” she says.
How to Make Children Well-behaved
One of the best ways to discipline children and prevent bad behaviour is to encourage good practice. It will help them to not only improve in the short term but also creates good habits as well as a discipline as they grow up.
Positive parenting is far better than punishing your children. Positive reinforcement helps to raise happier children and gives you the chance to set yourself as a positive role model for your child. Negative reinforcement such as punishing or threatening them can cause mental health problems in the future and can even make them fear you.
To encourage good behaviour in children, start by motivating, and showing them the benefits of having good behaviour. Here are a few ways to encourage good behaviour in children:
1. Be a role model
Be a role model your child can follow. It means that you need to act and behave in a way you wish for your child to develop. Also, get your partner and the rest of the family members to get involved. By giving your child a visual idea of what good behaviour looks like, they are likely to follow. So if this means changing your own lifestyle habits and behaviour, then it is well worth it if you’re doing it for your child.
2. Give compliment
Giving your child positive feedback is one of the best ways to encourage them to maintain good behaviour and to turn them into habits. Just like adults, children like it when they are complemented and will most likely keep demonstrating good behaviour.
Even a simple ‘great job’ or ‘I like what you did there’ is enough to motivate them to build a pattern of good behaviour without trying so hard. Giving lovely comments for your child also shows your kind and sympathetic side to them. This is important as it can help to strengthen your relationship and bond with your child.
3. Get down to your child’s level
If it means getting on your knees or sitting down to speak with your child, you should do so because it actually does make a big difference as to how your child will perceive you when you discipline them. By getting up close to your child, you’re showing them that they have your full attention and that you care.
It will also help them to focus on what you are saying. Getting your child’s attention is one of the hardest things when trying to discipline them. Try this, and hopefully, this will be the end to that.
4. Listen actively
When children are acting out on poor behaviour or fighting against you when you discipline them, chances are they are flustered with emotion. And the only way to get them to listen to you is to unflustered them first. Be patient, ask them how they feel, why they did the wrong thing.
If you listen to them instead of blasting them, they’ll learn to be more expressive and honest with you and will listen to what you’re saying in turn. It also helps them to feel important, respected as well as understood. It will prevent situations from being unnecessarily exacerbated and may even avoid tantrums of temper from conflict.
5. Show your child how you feel
Show your child how you feel about their behaviour and be verbal with them. Though children usually cannot see and comprehend things from another person’s perspective, by letting them know how you feel because of their behavior, they can still understand your feelings. If your child has an emotional connection to you, this may be enough for them to stop doing whatever that was wrong.
6. Be firm and hold them accountable
Even though you are trying to encourage your child to improve their behaviour by positive reinforcement, remember always to be firm with them and stand your ground. If you are too nice or lenient to your child, they may take advantage of the situation. When you give your child an instruction or an order, make sure you are firm about it, and make them feel responsible and accountable.
That teaches them discipline, how to behave well and follow instructions. This can be done without raising your voice, getting upset with them or getting flustered. Staying firm doesn’t mean you have to be aggressive. It just means that you are well aware and in charge of the situation and making it known to your child.
Keep in Mind
The most important part of parenting is patience. All children are different and have their own behavioural issues. And though all children will react differently to discipline, all of them will cause you problems nonetheless. It is crucial to be open with your child and give them as much of your patience as you can.
The above points of positive reinforcement are ideal but will take time depending on how your child reacts to them. If none of the above point works and you’re running out of ways to help your child’s issues, you can always seek the help of a professional including a child psychologist, a professional school for children with behavioural problems or even your child’s doctor.
By speaking with your doctor, you’ll be able to identify what is causing their behavioural issues and what to do. The doctor can also be able to determine if your child has a medical complication that may be affecting their and will be able to give them the help they need.
Head over to the Okadoc app to immediately book an appointment with your health practitioner.
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