AD – This is a collaborative post.
When we talk about anger management for children, we are not really talking about the feeling of anger in terms of doing away with it. But potentially helping children to become a little less angry, so it is not quite as intense or what’s even more important is making sure that when they become angry, they don’t engage in behaviours that might get them in trouble at school or they might help themselves or someone else. In this piece, we will give you ways how you can begin to help your children manage their anger and aggression.
- Help Them Develop an Emotional Vocabulary
The first thing that you can do to help your child manage their emotions, particularly their anger is by helping them develop an emotional vocabulary. As parents, we want our children to learn the particular experiences they’re having that are related to anger.
Letting them be familiar with emotion words such as anger, annoyance, and rage and other kinds of feeling that might come up before anger like hurt, and embarrassment can help them describe how they truly feel and thus give them an understanding what changes are taking place in their bodies and know what it is about. Hence, the first piece is awareness.
- It’s Okay to Get Mad!
The second thing and this is critical is that we don’t want children to believe that it is wrong to feel angry. This is a message that comes across a lot in our culture that you are not supposed to be angry, especially at a family member and unfortunately, that creates a lot of problems for children as they might experience or feel that as invalidating.
One, it might, in fact, intensify the emotion, but the second thing it does is it sends a message to them that they can’t trust their own experiences and/or they’re not necessarily a good judge of understanding what’s going on around them. This might potentially put them at risk for all kinds of negative behaviours so first is we want to get them aware of their own emotional states and allow them to be able to describe and name those states.
Second, we want to make sure they can validate the feeling then they will want to make sure that they understand once they sort of see what these feelings are about then they begin to notice them that they are able to stop themselves and do one of two things:
- Even very young children can be taught to do simple breathing exercises and it might be as simple as telling them to stop and count to ten, slow their breathing down to try to bring it down.
- The other thing is if they are for instance on the playground and they catch themselves feeling angry that might be a good time for them to take a timeout. Step away from their friends and possibly go off by themselves and do a little breathing or to go talk to a teacher. So what we really want is to make sure that they have some awareness and vocabulary of their emotions, what’s going on in their bodies and that it is validated so they understand that it’s okay to feel angry.
- Lastly, they can do some breathing, perhaps to bring down the emotional intensity and perhaps learn to take a timeout. We want them to be able to communicate and talk it through with adults like a teacher and then also with their parents at home and eventually even with their peers.
- Seek Professional Help!
The tips provided above may be very helpful for you in trying to help your angry child manage their anger, however, these may not be enough to get all the help you need to make your child feel better. If your child appears to be having anger management issues, it is highly recommended that you consult a professional expert that will guide both of you how to properly address the issue and manage to overcome this condition through anger management courses or other recommendations.
It is always smart to have an expert that is willing to help you and your kid work through his/her feelings of anger and develop ways to manage their emotions properly. Contact Brain Wellness Spa today and get the help and support you and your child need to manage your child’s anger.