While resolving conflicts isn’t necessarily easy for anyone, working through these types of issues can be especially challenging for children. But to become a well-adjusted person, it’s vital that you teach your children how to work through their feelings and deal with problems that arise between themselves and others. To help with this sometimes difficult task, here are three tips for teaching your kids about conflict resolution.
Model Proper Behavior To Them
Before you think your kids are even ready to start learning anything from you, they’re already being little sponges soaking up information from everything you say and do. Knowing this, the most important thing you can do to teach your children about conflict resolution from a young age is to model proper behavior for them. According to Dr. Robert Myers, a contributor to the Child Development Institute, you can model good behavior when dealing with conflict in the ways you speak to your significant others, your other children, and complete strangers. Not only will this be a great way for you to set a good example for your children, but it can also help your own relationships and assist in avoiding things like divorce.
Find Strategies For Remaining Calm
Even when your children are very young, you can help them learn ways to remain calm even when they’re feeling strong emotions. According to Christie Burnett, a contributor to Childhood101.com, it’s important that you allow your children to feel their emotions without letting their feelings get the best of them. To do this, try teaching them things like deep breathing, counting to ten, or taking some time to themselves until they’re ready to be around others again. In addition to this, you should also teach them what’s not okay when they’re dealing with conflict, like yelling or being physically or verbally hurtful.
Set Your Expectations Based On Their Age
While it is possible to help your children learn simple ways to resolve conflict even from a young age, it’s important that you don’t set too high of expectations for the development of your child. Heather Turgeon, a contributor to Babble.com, shares that young children often don’t have the capabilities to really understand a situation and their effects on it, which can make it hard for you to feel like you’re able to have a real teaching moment. So while your children are young, try to keep things simple. If you do need to help them control their behavior and understand their emotions, try to do so briefly and then move on. Dwelling on these things will only make you more frustrated and won’t help your child understand any more than they already do.
If you’re hoping to help your children figure out how to deal with conflict, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you do just that.