We all know we're supposed to set reasonable boundaries, have clear expectations, follow predictable routines, blah, blah, blah-but what can you do right this minute if your child is starting to howl with frustration after learning that no, actually, we're out of Cheerios?
These are strategies that have worked for me.
The secret is to acknowledge the reality of children's wishes. This sounds obvious, but think about how easy it is to deny their feelings: "You can't possibly want another Lego set, you never play with the ones you have." "That toy is just junk." "You can't be hungry, you just had dinner." "Of course you want to go, you love going to Grandpa's house." "You're not scared of clowns."
When you don't fight children's feelings, they're better able to handle frustration.
1. Write it down. This is weirdly effective, even with kids too young to read. Seeing you put words on paper reassures them that you've registered their desires. At first, with the Big Girl,Read More »from Seven tips for defusing a child's tantrum.