It’s easy to get into conflict with our kids. They ignore us, we raise our voices, they fight back etc.
We, the big people, need to be strong, loving, flexible and available. And that might mean we need to take responsibility for our own frustrations, irritations or impatience rather than projecting it onto our kids in the way of our emotions or reactivity. We all have emotional reactions and responses to others, that’s part of being in relationship. What is important is that we have appropriate and effect ways to attend to our emotions (away from our kids) so that we are more able to be calm, available and steady.
It’s important to back our words up with actions and consequences. Being calm, steady and connected to our goals and purposes (rather than flying off the handle or “reactive”) will support our ability to provide clear confident communication with simple instructions, no pleading, fussing or nagging. Parenting is best undertaken in a firm yet friendly fashon. Basically, take the ‘fight’ out of your voice by recognising your own emotions (frustration, irritability or reactiveness) and using the ways you know to calm yourself and refocus on firm yet friendly relationships with your kids.
Try to look for ways to celebrate your kids, especially using “referential praise” – that is, raving about them to others.
Based on a posting from The Parentling Place