Many times, our gut reaction to temper tantrums is wrong. So before you do anything – SLOW DOWN! Think about what you are doing or are about to do. The following are some helpful tips to guide you in the right direction:
1. Don’t react. Keep your emotions in check. Don’t give any more added energy or attention to the tantrum than is necessary. Don’t give it power!
2. Check to see if the child’s primary needs are being met (food, sleep, water, sickness, etc). Meet them first before implementing discipline.
3. Do not give in to the temper tantrum! Show the misbehaving child that the temper tantrum is ineffective for getting wants – things that they don’t necessarily need.
4. Be proactive. Ignore the child if they are having the tantrum in a private area. If the tantrum is bothering others, in a calm manner, take the child to an appropriate place and then ignore them. Do not allow them to disturb others.
5. Set boundaries. Communicate to the child what is appropriate behavior and what is expected of them.
6. Implement consequences. Follow through with the consequences of the inappropriate behavior.
7. Give power to the consequences. Make sure that the consequences are severe enough to cause the child to agonize over their misbehavior. Give them a reason to behave!