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How to parent calmly

how to parent calmly

Parenting is not always easy, and oftentimes, keeping calm when dealing with a tired or niggly toddler or baby can be tough. If you have ever felt anger, or frustration – remember that you are not alone. But we are here to give you a few tips on how to keep your cool and parent more calmly.

See the signs

Sometimes anger can sneak up on us. It may start as a slight irritation and slowly build until you lose your temper. The best way to stop this in its tracks is to see the signs:

  • Rapid breathing
  • Elevated heartbeat
  • Feeling physically hot
  • Muscles and body tensing
  • Teeth and jaw clenching

These physical signs can help you identify when you are going to lose your cool.

Walk away

If you have spotted the signs of anger and frustration building – the next step is to walk away. Ensure your child is in a safe space and can’t hurt themselves and give yourself space. Whether that be to drink a glass of water in the kitchen or hide out in the bathroom for a bit (no judgement here!), take a moment to breathe in and out. Centre yourself, then face the situation again.

Don’t sweat the small stuff

This specifically applies to the toddler age! Not everything has to be a battle – sometimes you can let things slide. So they don’t want to wear the shoes you want them to? Let them have a win there. There is a balance between being consistent and not letting every decision turn into a war. Decide what matters most to you and stick to your guns. The other things? If they are going to cause you (and your child) to get frustrated and angry – consider letting it go.

Be organised

We know that it is easier said than done! And having children always adds a certain disorganisation to the mix. However, the more organised you are, the smoother things will generally run. If you find yourself losing your temper during bed, dinner and bath time every evening – then try to think of ways to simplify the process. Get your partner to help out, meal prep over the weekend, let your child bathe with you. When a situation is less stressful, you are less likely to be stressed by it.

Make time for yourself

This is a different concept to walking away when you are angry. That’s a reactive solution. Here, we want to pre-empt the frustration and stress. How? Start to make time for yourself. Whether that be a cup of tea in a quiet place, or a ready-for-bed ritual that is all for you. Taking a few small gaps during the day to quiet your mind or do something you love can make all the difference in the world to being a calm parent.

 

Toptots Early Learning SA

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