Last week, we looked at few tips that can help us manage the behaviours of our children. Here are some more practices that we can embrace for better behavioural therapy.
Repetition is an integral part of all learning and mastery. “If at first you don’t succeed, try again.” Decide how many times you will repeat a command or instruction before acting on it. It really shouldn’t be more than two or three times for the smaller child and less for the older child. You might start by giving a warning of what will happen if the rule is not followed, and then following through with your consequence after the warning is ignored.
This is another given, but perhaps the most difficult to facilitate. Consistency in rules and consistency in following through with consequences are both extremely important. Children naturally look for loopholes such as trying your patience when you’re tired, but these are the times consistency is most important and effective.
As always, who you are and how you act is the most potent guide and teacher for your child. Treat him/her with respect in all situations, and strive to manage his/her behaviour with a calm attitude that comes from your understanding that self-control is ultimately necessary and good for your child.
We can bring out the best behaviours in our children by consciously taking one bold step at a time and giving appropriate responses to our children’s behaviours. As Catherynne M. Valente puts it, “You only had to choose which me to talk to, for, you know, we all change our manners, depending on who has come to chat. One does not behave the same way to a grandfather as to a bosom friend, to a professor as to a curious niece.”