When kids melt down in the middle of a crowded store, at a barbecue with neighbors you’ve just met, or at home while waiting for dinner, it can be extremely frustrating. Why can’t he just control himself?!?
Self-control is one of the most valuable skills parents can teach to set up children for long-term success. Not to mention make your life easier on a day-to-day basis!
The path to self-control begins in early childhood, develops throughout one’s life, and is highly influenced by both nature and nurture. This is actually great news! You can affect your child’s ability to learn self-control, AND it’s a continuous process. Repetition is key!
Here are a few easy ways you can teach your child about self-control. I know it may seem like a stretch that playing games or practicing deep breathing actually leads to better self-control. But research shows you shouldn’t discount games such as Simon Says or Freeze Dance. Any time we ask kids to play by the rules, we’re encouraging them to develop self-control. Relaxation techniques also reduce stress, improve memory, contain aggressiveness, and control anxiety. It really can be the little things that make all the difference!
Do you have a self-control technique you always rely on? We’d love to hear from you!