Do you ever wonder why your child does the things they do?
- Why they are fine one minute, and then hitting their sibling the next.
- Why they come home and kick the dog.
- Why they refuse to do what you ask them to do something they were happy to do the day before.
It can sometimes seem to be a mystery. Or it can be proof that they need more discipline - to learn what's acceptable behaviour and what's not.
Alternatively you can think they're behaving that way because it's learned behaviour.
Or, you can worry that there's something wrong with your child. Or with you as a parent.
However, in this episode I'll explain what's really going on for your child, so that you can then understand what your child is actually needing.
Because it's actually very simple.
It’s to do with your child's feelings.
Which I think you instinctively know. You know if your child is in a bad mood. They show it super clearly through their behaviour!
Same with you. Your children will do the same behaviour on 2 different days. 1 day, you’re in a great mood, relaxed, no stresses so you manage to handle them fine. The 2nd day, you’re stressed, overwhelmed and tired so you react completely differently, and get a very different (usually horrible!) result.
It's also important to know that there are 2 types of feelings:
- feelings about the immediate situation
- this is where the issue is more obvious
- you're more able to reason with them & resolve the issue
- feelings about past hurts which are unresolved
- reactions can come seemingly out of the blue
- their reaction is huge, almost uncontrollable, certainly disproportionate to the actual issue in the moment and you're unable to reason with them
When you understand that it's feelings which determine behaviour, it will lead to a profound shift in how you view your children’s reactions and how you then respond to it.
When you understand it’s got to do with feelings, it’s less about teaching your child, and more about helping them with their feelings so they go back to their loving selves and naturally behave well again.
Yes, of course there are things you need to teach your child about. But this only happens when they’re able to think well. When they’re feeling connected with you. When they’re not upset. But this is about helping, NOT disciplining.
So the next time your child has a huge reaction, try to stop & think about what may be going on for them, and look to help them with their feelings, rather than thinking you need to stop the feelings by using punishment, reasoning or teaching.
I'd love to hear from you so, as ever, let me know your thoughts & experiences, and if you'd like any help.
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