Tag Archives: child behavior problems

Inconsistency May be Causing Your Child’s Behavior Problems

Angry boy screamingChild behavior problems are caused by many different factors.  One reason for child behavior problems is inconsistency in the child’s life.  Children need to feel secure in their environments in order to grow up happy and healthy.  Child behavior problems often occur because the child’s environment makes them feel insecure.  One way to help your child feel secure is to provide structure.  While a child may say they don’t like routines and structure, the reality is that they crave it…and need it!

So in order to begin eliminating the child behavior problems that you may face, start by creating a family routine.  Create a daily schedule for your family.  Start with defining a time that the children need to be out of bed.  List the morning chores that need to be completed and in what order.  Continue listing daily tasks and establish a set time each day for each task.  Then share the schedule with your family.  Make sure your children understand that there may be changes to the schedule due to unexpected events or special occasions, but that on most days your family will follow the set schedule.

To further eliminate the child behavior problems that you may be having, take time to track when your children are having these behavior problems.  More than likely, these will be happening during unstructured times.  A quick fix for these child behavior problems is to create structure during these times.

For example, your children are fighting frequently between 4:00 and 5:00pm.  They’re home from school and you’re busy fixing dinner.  You just want them to play nicely so that you can get dinner on the table, but every day you’re distracted by their fighting.  A simple fix to this child behavior problem is to structure that hour.  Perhaps make this homework time and send each child to his/her room to work on homework.  What if your child doesn’t have any homework on a specific night?  Then the other option would be quiet reading in his/her room.  Anything that lets your child know that from 4:00 to 5:00pm, they need to be working in their rooms.  Creating this structure for your home will eliminate many of the child behavior problems you are facing daily.

Still need help creating your family’s daily schedule?  Check out Get-Organized-Mom.com  If your family has never been on a schedule, here are some tips to get them on board?

1. The most important person to have on board with you is your spouse. If you are both in agreement that a household schedule is needed, and you are both willing to enforce it, you will be able to make your schedule work.
2. When you set up your schedule, get your kids involved. Just like anything else, if they have ownership in it, they will want to participate.
3. Make your family schedules kid-friendly. Use bright colors. Let your kids decorate it with stickers of their favorite characters. Or just let them draw pictures on it with crayons or markers. Hang it low enough for the kids to see it.
4. You’ll probably get a little more resistance from your teenagers-but do it anyway! They will benefit from this too. Again, let them be involved in making the schedule. And make sure to include some time for them to do the things they enjoy.

 

Things to consider when creating your family schedule:
• Give each family member their own column on your family schedule so that everyone’s unique activities can be accounted for.
• Try color coding items to make it easier to read at a glance.  Give each family member their own color and assign one color for “Family” activities that everyone does together.
• Fill in the things that happen at the same time every day or ever week first.
• Then compare each family member’s schedule.  You may need to fill in items on someone else’s schedule based on another schedule.  For example, Daisy has ballet lessons on Thursday at 4pm.  Someone has to drive her there and pick her up, right?
• Don’t forget the daily “living essentials” such as homework time, chores, housework, meal times and meal preparation, bedtime routines, morning time routines, play time, family time, etc. . .

 

Tips to Make Your Family Schedules Work
1. Stick to it! Don’t give up.  Rome wasn’t built in a day!
2. The best schedules are flexible ones! Things are going to happen to get you off schedule. That’s just life…don’t let it stress you out!
3. Be willing to change the schedule if it’s not working. If you only have 30 minutes scheduled for the kids to do their homework, and it’s regularly taking them 45 minutes, change the schedule to accommodate it. Don’t rush them to the point that they’re not doing a good job, just so you can stick to the schedule.

When your children know what is expected during the course of each day, the child behavior problems that you were seeing will surely decrease.  Your child will be more confident and less likely to act out when they are feeling secure in their environment, and you’ll be a happier parent too!

If you need help creating structure in your home and don’t know how to effectively deal with your child’s behavior problems, Behavior Management Coaching can help.  We will individualize our coaching to help meet your family’s unique needs.  Talk to us Today!

Get Off the Couch!

Man relaxing on his couchHey there arm-chair parent!  GET OFF THE COUCH!  Get on the floor and start playing with your kids.  Yes, you’re busy.  Yes, you’ve got bills to pay.  Yes, life is much more stressful than when your parents were raising you.  But none of these are valid excuses for not spending time with your child!  Your children will be grown and out of the house before you know it.  You can watch TV then.  For now, make time to get up and play with your kids.

Child behavior problems most often occur because children are seeking their parent’s attention.  No child wants to be in trouble, but being in trouble is a sure-fire way to get one’s parents to pay attention to them.  To a kid, it’s better to be in trouble than to be ignored.

So you want to reduce your child’s behavior problems?  Start playing with them.  Show your child that you care about him and are interested in him.  Encourage activities that you both enjoy.  This will build a healthy foundation for your relationship and will do remarkable things in a short amount of time toward reducing the child behavior problems you face.

So what if you just don’t know how to play with your children?  Don’t laugh.  Don’t judge.  Just sit with this idea for a minute.  Do you really remember how to play?  Do you really know how to play with your kids and not just give a half-hearted half-hour to them?

If you don’t, you’re not alone.  TODAY had an interesting article about “Making the most of playtime when it doesn’t come naturally

I love this article!  I love that she’s brutally honest that some parents just don’t know how to play with their children.  Why does our society make this a source of shame for parents?  Instead, let’s encourage parents and help them learn to love playing with their kids.

Ideas for playing with your kids:

  1. Unstructured play. Get down on the floor with your kids and play. Get physical. Have a pillow fight. Have a tickle fight. Surprise them by playing on the floor with them!
  2. Structured play. For parents that find it hard to tap into their sillier side or who feel self-conscious having a dance party or pretending to play pirates, structured play is better than no playtime. Play a board game. Or make a craft together. Pintrest is awesome, but can be way too rigid and set up an ideal of perfection for you and your child’s finished product. Craft stores and Amazon have books. Check those out.
  3. Go on an outing. Do something physical. Go fishing. Go bowling. Go skating.   And actually bowl or skate with your child. Play catch at the park. Try exploring a children’s museum together and actually interact with your child in the exhibits. Whatever you do, don’t be the parent at the children’s museum texting on her phone. Can it get more pathetic than that?

Needs some more ideas or inspiration?  Need to feel like you’re not alone?  Check out this blog on 28 Days of Play.  Again, I love this piece.  I felt understood and inspired by lots of these stories.  But don’t get too lost in the blog that you forget to play with your children!

So let’s say you’ve started playing with your kids more.  Their behavior problems have reduced, but you still hear them fighting in the other room while you’re watching a movie.  Hit the pause button.  Get off the couch and go into the room where your kids are fighting.  Yelling from the couch does nothing to stop child behavior problems.  If you don’t care enough to get up, why should your child care enough to stop the behavior?

The message that you want to send your kids is that they are an important part of your life.  This will create a home built upon mutual respect and positive energy, and one that is faced with far fewer child behavior problems and less parent stress in the meantime!  Behavior Management Coaching can help make your home environment a positive one and end the power struggles today!  Talk to us today to see how we can help!