Strong-Willed Child: 5 Secret Tips for Parenting and How To Get Through It
If your child is anything like mine. She is strong-willed. This journey has not been easy. So I thought I would share some of my top 5 tips for parenting such a strong willed kiddo!
1.) You cannot pour from an empty cup.
When you are a parent, there is always something to do. A typical parent is exhausted, over worked, stressed, and possibly fighting a bit of depression. The truth is, you cannot pour from an empty cup. You have to recharge. Yes, that might mean that the dishes are going to sit in the sink or the laundry will have to wait. Try getting to bed earlier tonight, or reading a few chapters on a good book before bed. Taking out time for yourself is crucial to be being a good parent. So here are some ways that I recharge myself when I feel like I am wiped out.
- Sleep in on Sunday morning. (My husband is wonderful)
- Go on a date night with my husband
- Grab a margarita with my mom
- Go to the gym at least twice a week.
- Make sure you are eating a lot of whole foods
2.) Have a schedule and stick with it!
I know, this one is easier said than done! To be real, I am not always the best at it. When you have a schedule, your children know when to expect what. For example we go to the gym on Tuesday and Thursday, so we eat a later dinner, and that means shower that night instead of bath. She is aware we do this twice a week, it really makes it easier. Some ideas are giving them an idea of what their day will look like, they are more likely to not put up a fight. Also giving your children a five and one minute warning will do wonders to get them to listen.
3.) Do NOT take poor behavior personal.
For some of you this might seem very obvious. But for me.. this really changed how I parent. I realized when my daughter was acting up, I was actually upset with her. When she chose to throw a temper-tantrum I took offense. In reality, they are children!! They do not have the ability to communicate like we do, they are going to have bad days. When I started to discipline without my emotion, or feelings in the mix we really got somewhere. Sometimes we see our children as being such big kids, but in reality they are still small.
4.) Have some grace.
You need to have grace for yourself, your spouse, and your child. There are going to be bad days. Trust me, I just had one yesterday. I like to say “I am having a Brittney Spears from 2007 day.” Give yourself some grace when anyone in your family messes up. Most of us are stressed out enough, and sometimes letting things go is the best thing for everyone.
5.) Stop with the yelling!
Seriously, they don’t want to hear it, I don’t want to hear it. Yelling is how an adult shows that they do not have themselves under control Now, do not feel bad. We have yelled at our daughter many times. But, I am working on it. When I yell, what I am really doing is hurting my daughter. She is a person who deserves to be respected. Sure she might be five, but that doesn’t take away from her being an actual human being. For some reason I feel like parents forget that. (myself included) Talking in a calm, lower tone, tends to be more effective.