Hello and welcome to The Parenting Clubhouse Podcast! Have you ever been afraid to leave a public place like the park, library, or a playdate because you’re worried about how your child is going to behave when it’s time to leave? Listen, moms and dads, I feel you! In today’s episode I’m giving you an EASY strategy to help with these outings. Also I don’t want to forget to tell you about my Regain Control of Your Child’s Behavior course. I’ll chat more about that later. Let’s jump in.
Recently I took my one-and-a-half year old to the park and, I have to be honest, I was worried about how he was going to handle leaving and going home. I was worried that he would throw a fit and make a scene in front of all the other parents and children. Luckily, I used an easy strategy when it was time to go: I provided the expectation. Sounds simple, right? It is!
When it was time to leave, I informed my son that he can go down the slide two more times and then it’s time to go home. After he went down the slide one time, I reminded him again that he could go down the slide one more time and then it’s time to go home. When he went down the slide the second time, I told him that it’s time to go and to say “bye bye.” What did he do? He grabbed my hand, said “bye bye” to the other parents and children at the park, and walked with me to the car. NO PROBLEM!
Phew! I was relieved that we had no problems leaving the park! I also felt confident and empowered in my parenting and in the simple strategy that I was using. It actually worked! And because it worked, I’ll be less afraid in that same situation next time and more likely to continue using that situation in similar circumstances.
Communication is key. We know that to be the case with adults but it’s also true with our children.
To help our child transition to another activity, like leaving the park to go home, we can provide the warning or expectation of what is to come. We can verbally provide the reminder and expectation based off of what the child is doing. For example, we can say, “You can go down the slide two more times and then it’s time to go home.” Or, “ You can shoot the basketball three more times and then it’s time to leave.”
We can also provide a countdown to our expectation with a timer. We can say, “You have five more minutes to play and then it’s time to leave.”
And of course it’s smart to provide additional reminders as time is narrowing down or as our child is finishing up their activity. These extra reminders prepares the child that it’s almost time to leave.
If you want to take it a step further to managing behavior before it even starts, if you want to avoid the crying and tantrums, if you want to feel confident in your parenting and have parenting feel easy again with specific strategies to use, then come and check out my Regain Control of Your Child’s Behavior course!
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