Do your children continually irritate you? It feels like they’re just trying to get under your skin by testing you at every step and purposefully misbehaving. It may even feel as though they only pay attention when you shout.
First and foremost, I want you to understand that none of us has inexhaustible patience. We all get irritated and lose our shit at one point or another, no matter how excellent of parents we are?
We can apply all of the finest methods, read all of the parenting books and blogs, and take as many deep breaths as possible, but no matter how hard we try, we can’t always stay calm.
We all reach a breaking point at some point!
There is reason to be optimistic. It won’t always be this way. Indeed, with the foundation, I’ll offer today, a little experience, and a strategy in place for the next major storm… You can get through these particularly turbulent periods.
You are human. That’s correct, the fact that you’re losing your mind is an indication that your brain is operating. Your shouting and tantrums are most likely a reaction or trigger to something your child said (or didn’t say) that triggered deep-seated memories of feeling unheard, unnoticed, and mistreated. In other words, your brain is attempting to prevent it from happening again.
How To Stop Your Child From Pushing Your Buttons
What does it look like when your children push the boundaries?
- You tell them what’s acceptable and what’s not, but it doesn’t seem to make a difference.
- Your children are well aware of the phrases or sounds that make your skin crawl.
- After repeating yourself again and over, you find yourself shouting.
- Today, I’m going to show you how to make preparations for the most chaotic, stressful, and stormy periods that occur with having children with challenging behaviors.
See also: 7 Reasons Your Child May Be Crying
How You Speak To Children Matters
You are the glue that ties the whole thing together. And, if you have a difficult child with problematic behaviors, you could be the only person who can help them.
What I mean is that I believe that every child requires people in their lives who can:
Guide them, believe in them, empower them, and connect with them.
Only one individual needs to take on that position and be that person for the children. So, if you’re that person, congrats on taking on that responsibility.
You are the pivot. When it comes to coping with our kids triggering us, pushing our buttons, or setting us off, the first course of action isn’t to focus on getting the child to modify the behavior (we’ll get to that later), but rather to work on adjusting our thinking, taking a little step at a time.
Consider it this way:
If you say…
- My children irritate me.
- My children do it on purpose.
- My children have an uncanny ability to get under my skin.
- My children are simply putting me to the test.
Inadvertently, you’re breeding animosity against your children and their actions with that mindset. And believe me, even if you never say anything in front of your children, they can sense the resentment’s energy.
- Your words have a tremendous impact.
- Your thoughts have tremendous power.
- Your energy is really powerful.
The fact is that your children are unlikely to have the emotional regulation and self-discipline or awareness to express their genuine desires and needs, and this manifests itself in the most bizarre and frequently distressing ways. Even if it appears that they are simply manipulating you, they are doing their best.
And, if we dig a little deeper, we can see that they are causing the annoyance on purpose. They seek your attention since they don’t think their needs are being satisfied. They do, however, require assistance in determining what is wrong and what they require.
Isn’t it already making you feel better? If you don’t let it get to you, your child won’t be able to press your buttons.
See also: Help Your Child Stop Swearing At Home
Your Child Is Asking For Connection
Connection could be the last thing on your mind when your children are making unpleasant noises, backtalking, or ignoring you.
I frequently hear from people who are going through a difficult time. What? You’d like me to be their buddy, right? Do you want me to sit down with them and play a game when they’re being nasty to me?
This is where the majority of individuals go wrong with their connections. I like to refer to this as an A to Z solution (it has to be all or nothing). Instead, I’d like you to make a small movement from point A to point B during the storm.
Communication is the quickest method to resolve any power dispute (both verbal and non-verbal). Save the sit-down, heart-to-heart conversations for another time. For the time being, I’d like you to concentrate on utilizing short, basic statements that reflect what you’re experiencing.
When Your Kids Push Your Buttons, Use These 5 Simple Scripts
- ”I see you’re experiencing some difficulties. “How can I assist?”
- ”I’ve noticed you’re constantly repeating yourself. I’m curious whether you need anything.”
- “I hear you’re constantly interrupting. I’m not sure whether what you want to say to me can wait.”
- “I’m not sure how we’re going to work together, and I’m not sure how we’re going to figure out this plan.”
- “I see you’re in a lot of pain, right?”
- The concept is that you’re utilizing I-statements to reflect back what you’re seeing on the screen.
It’s critical to understand why your child isn’t reacting to you RIGHT NOW…
As a defence mechanism, their brains are in shut down mode and are either in the fight, flight, or freeze mode.
Know that your children’s emotional and sensory systems are overloaded and dysregulated when you’re shouting, when they’re acting like the Hulk, or when they’re being overly goofy and trying to settle down. They can no longer receive or accept input or absorb information in the same way they used to.
There Is A Deeper Need
I’ve mentioned it before, but the behavior you’re witnessing is as follows:
The copying, the ignoring, the backtalk, the interrupting, and so on are all examples of repetitious behavior.
All of these actions are only the tip of the iceberg; they aren’t the real problem.
In reality, what you’re witnessing is a symptom, such as a temperature or an itch, rather than the core reason. While Iceberg Theory is not a new concept, it is a more recent one that many of us have never heard of, or if we have, we are unsure what to do with it.
EVERY action is motivated by one of the following six factors:
- Basic Needs
Getting to the base of a children’s behavior has shown to be the most difficult aspect of parenting for most parents.
Maybe even putting band-aids on the problem all along, but never getting to the source of the problem.
You can’t perform a thorough evaluation in the heat of the moment, but one of the most effective things you can do is make your children feel secure and connected, heard, valued, and noticed.
There will be no more assumptions. Rather than assuming that:
They’re simply trying to get you, or they’re there to oppose whatever you say, or they don’t have any regard for you.
You get resentful when you think the behavior is motivated only by spite (causing your reactions and connection to diminish).
I do, however, recommend that you get intrigued.
Here’s what it looks like right now.
Questions to ask yourself to see whether you’re exceeding your limits because of a Basic Need:
- I’m curious as to what this is all about.
- I’m interested as to what they require.
- Do they require a sense of security?
- Is it possible that they’re acting out of fear?
- Do they have any concerns that something bad is about to happen?
- Are they overjoyed that something is about to happen?
- Are you worried about what’s going to happen next?
Questions to ask yourself to see whether you’re straining your limits due to a lack of connection:
- Is there a problem with one of their friends?
- Are they experiencing issues with their siblings?
- Do they appear to be estranged from you?
- Do they believe you can be trusted?
- Do they have the impression that you see them for who they are at the time?
- How can you create safe spaces for your children to be seen, heard, and valued?
Here’s the deal: We can read all of the parenting blogs on the internet, read all of the books, attend all of the summits, and learn all of these parenting tips and tactics.
But, more often than not, it’s a case of slapping a bunch of patches and band-aids on the underlying issue.
So, rather than applying these ideas and tactics right now, it’s vital to take a breath and simply be interested.
“What do you require right now?”
My theory is that it is necessary to be safe.
Parents, teachers, and even professionals frequently point to the “skills” they lack, the goals they have, or the thing they are avoiding.
Because there is a misunderstanding that safety entails having a nice house with food, drink, and shelter, safety is often overlooked.
Humans, on the other hand, need to trust others around them, feel seen and heard, and feel comfortable in their surroundings in order to feel safe.
Let’s get serious for a second… We’re all human, and our entire world has been ravaged by a global epidemic. After more than a year of a pandemic, none of us feel as safe as we did a year ago.
Firmer Boundaries Are Not Recommended
Many folks jump right to the empowering part. When they witness a tantrum or their children pushing their buttons, they instantly respond by saying, “Let’s solve this.” Let’s develop a strategy.”
Don’t go directly to skill development. In fact, I would advise you to put skill development on hold until after the storm has passed and they are in a better ego state.
You and I both know that if you try to “teach your child a lesson,” all they will hear is Charlie Brown’s teacher’s voice, or worse, they will be provoked into even worse behavior. And if their actions continue to annoy or irritate you, you are in no position to “teach” them anything.
So it’s in both of your best interests to postpone this.
- The importance of empowerment cannot be overstated.
- You must take charge of your own destiny.
- You need to give them more strength.
- You must develop your abilities.
You can work together to address the problem and develop a strategy for the future.
- Describe the behavior in detail.
- Give an example of how it makes you feel.
- Describe your impressions about it.
- Recognize that this is not their aim.
- Inquire about cooperation.
This is how it would sound:
“Do you want to know something? It makes me feel very unheard when you say…. It makes me feel as if you don’t value me. And I’m sure that’s not what you’re attempting to convey. So maybe we can come up with a strategy for what you can do when you need me that doesn’t include jabbing at me, calling me names, or doing some of the things we’ve discussed.”
You’re helping your kids grow more aware of how to self-regulate, advocate for their own needs, and communicate when someone “triggers” them by having these talks.
These are essential life skills. You can try to offer immediate punishments (operant conditioning)and incentives for certain actions, but this does not teach children’s how to modify their behavior, react differently (Differential Susceptibility), or analyze the underlying core reason.
A word of caution: This transformation will not occur overnight. This isn’t going to happen overnight. If it doesn’t work the first time, don’t toss it away.
Instead, go over the plan over and again, making modest changes each time.
The objective is to work together to devise a strategy for resolving this issue in a different way so that their needs are satisfied without the need for tantrums, meltdowns, or outbursts.
You must show them that you appreciate their input as a team and that you want to collaborate with them.
This is a dynamic procedure that evolves over time. You’ve got this!
When Your Child Is Pushing Your Buttons
It works because it is based on human psychology, what humans require, and the finest techniques for raising healthy, successful children who can speak out for their own needs and desires.
It all boils down to these four crucial components:
Your ideas have an impact on your reactions, and hence on your children’s.
Connect – basic communication is the foundation for resolving any conflict, particularly boundary-pushing.
Understand – be interested in the moment. What is the true meaning of ignoring or shaming?
After the storm has passed, work together to develop skills and develop an action plan that will empower both you and your child.
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