5 Ways to calm a cranky toddler without bribes!

Toddlers and tantrums go hand-in-hand, don’t they? This weekend we were at a birthday party and my two-year-old suddenly threw a fit. Like most of you out there, I was clueless why he behaved the way he did and had a tough time getting him back to a good mood. However, one thing I promised myself when my son turned two was that I would deal with his tantrums constructively and would not succumb to bribes.

And, I’m proud I have been able to keep up the promise. So, if you are wondering what I do to calm him, without promising chocolates, bullet trains or cream doughnuts, here’s the trick.

1. Mom’s hug is magical

This is one of the best ways to calm a toddler who does not have the language skills to express his feelings. Let’s admit it! Not all toddlers talk early. And for those who are yet to speak fluently, a mother’s hug is the best way to reassure them that you understand and acknowledge their feelings. Hugging makes kids feel secure and also feel you have actually understood their emotions. And this in turn, lets them calm down instantly, well almost!

2.  Get moving

Movements can distract and shift kids’ attention in a jiffy! Walking, swaying, rocking, or even dancing can shift their focus from their emotions to their feet, thereby forgetting what they were upset about. Also, your toddler gets your undivided attention in a positive way!

3. Play with your child

Rather than fighting fire with fire, try being responsive to a child who is already unhappy. Toddlers have high energies and the crankiness is only an off shoot of this energy not being used constructively. What your child wants, more than anything is your undivided attention. So, schedule short, frequent playtimes with your toddler. This way you will help him use his energy constructively, thereby preventing him from getting cranky.

4. Step out

If none of the above tricks are working, step out. A drive will help soothe a cranky toddler. The motion of the car, the sound of the road and the support offered by the car seat may combine to calm your child and rock her to sleep. Also, turn on your toddler’s favourite music and you will see him calm down in minutes.

5. Find out what’s wrong

Last, but definitely not the least, have a chat with your toddler. Whether he is able to communicate effectively or not, the very fact that you are interested in his problems will make him happy and might also help him get over the cranky state. So, rather than merely neglecting it or finding ways to distract, have an open conversation. This will always make kids feel wanted and loved.

Feature Image Source: babycenter.com

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