Often, when you get angry, the choice of the words you use can be unconsciously scary for kids. "Do this, or I'll spank you!" "Go away!" "I said, No!" Sounds familiar? You're not alone. Most parents experience the same thing. But worry not! These five phrases can effectively replace your physical and verbal punishment. 1. "I know you really wanted it. Let's think of a solution together." When you connect and empathise with your child, they will less likely go into temper tantrums because their feelings and thoughts are being heard and understood. When you offer them the opportunity to think together, they will learn how to regulate and problem-solve through you. 2. "You are angry/upset right now. I love you, and I'm going to give you some time to calm down. I'm going to be here by your side the whole time. Come to me when you are ready." Do not ask a young child to go to his room when he is angry or upset. It is already difficult to go through the emotions he is having. By asking him to do it alone in the room, it will only make him feel more helpless and lonely. Instead, stay with him. Help him calm down and regulate his emotions. However, if your older child requests to go to his room, you can let him. 3. "You choose, or I choose?" By giving children choices, you are allowing them to make decisions for themselves. Sometimes we just want to choose something we like to eat, and not what our parents ask us to eat. 4. "I'm ready when you are." This is a powerful phrase. Children need time to think and analyse before doing something. When you say this, you are giving them the space to organise their thoughts and troubleshoot challenges. Same goes for emotions and feelings if they are not ready to talk to you about their problems, don't force or ignore them. Just say this phrase, and they will come to you when they are ready. 5. "Let's talk nicely." When your kids are screaming and shouting, there is no point in reasoning or talking to them at that moment. Wait till they are calm, and the talking can begin.
Replace anger with these calming and effective phrases with your kids today!