Anger is a normal feeling. It is considered as one of the negative feelings because it is associated with typical hostile thoughts and maladaptive behaviours. It has negative impact on both physical and psychological well-being.
The response/reaction towards anger triggering situation varies from one child to another. It is not uncommon for children who have trouble handling their emotions to lose control and direct their distress at a caregiver by screaming cursing, hitting or biting. This is quite troublesome for parents and teachers to understand and thus also becomes difficult to manage those aggressive behaviour. Hence, let us have a overview of such aggressive behaviours, and learn how to manage them with few simple techniques.
Usually aggressive behaviours arise from being upset, sad or embarrassment. For instance, when a promise is broken or child doesn’t get the expected thing initially the child might get upset. However later it might turn out to be aggressive as this behaviour is noticeable and catches the adult’s attention quickly. I always mention in almost every article of mine that, Your children do not learn by listening but through observation. They model the behaviour. Hence, you need to show appropriate anger management method.
1) Verbalise the coping skill
When you handle your anger in kinder, and mild way children will pick up the same way. As you verbalise the behaviour children will look at you and understand even adults get mad too and this is how they respond. If you are hostile in nature and then tell the child to be calm it won’t work. When you are angry towards your co-worker for not answering the call verbalise how are you feeling at that moment instead of yelling. Take responsibility for your behaviour when you lose your temper in front of the kids and discuss what you could have done instead. When children get aggressive understand the reason behind it and help them to sort out their feeling properly.
2) Not just teach but train your children with appropriate coping skills
Children need to know appropriate ways to deal with their anger. Just yelling at the child not to hit others may not work. Instead explain what the child can do when he/she is feeling agitated. Train your children to verbalise why they feel offended (use words instead of being physical) or just walk away from the situation.
3) Keep anger management kit tool
This kit contains calming elements such as soft balls, painting materials, soothing music or any other elements for diverting the mind. These materials calm their mind and body.
4) Use Punishment and reward system
Sometimes children’s aggression is uncontrollable. Punishment doesn’t mean that you need to hit back or yell. These system will make the child understand the consequences of breaking or building anger rules. Reward with something when the child reduces or eliminates the aggressive behaviour. Imply the immediate consequence method using effective ways such as time out, loss of privileges or paying restitution.
Time out is a behavioural modification that involves temporarily separating a person from an environment where an unacceptable behaviour has occurred. You can also lessen the privileges that the child is getting for non controllable aggressive situations. Paying restitution refers to compensating for something. For instance if a child breaks the toy of a sibling, he/she has to lend his/her one toy for the sibling as a compensation.
On a concluding note, anger can be controlled through healthy management. As a parent it is necessary to guide your children and create an awareness about their negative feelings and what they can do about it. Change is not about creating miracle. It takes time. When you follow above mentioned techniques, it will definitely take time to bring out the expected change. However, maintain a never give up attitude.
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