Here are 5 ways parents can help kids self-regulate without electronics

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The Danger With Using Screens As a Digital Pacifier:

The small toddler in front of me last week started having a temper tantrum because he demanded a piece of candy while I stood in the grocery store checkout line. Before the first tear could fall down his cheek, his mother reached into her purse and gave the youngster her phone. The young youngster immediately stopped crying and started playing with his mother’s phone, as if by magic. It was astounding that the mother never spoke to the young child and that the sight of her phone instantly calmed him. I wish I could claim that this is something that has never happened to me or that I have never attempted it, but that would be a lie.

I observe parents utilizing technology far too frequently to manage their children’s emotions. The ability to self-regulate and manage our emotions is a very important life skill that helps to develop strong children and adults, thus parents must be careful about this.

We must keep in mind that youngsters need to directly experience emotions in order to develop socially acceptable responses.

Here are 5 ways parents can help kids self-regulate without electronics:

  1. By avoiding our own mini-tantrums, such yelling, we can serve as healthy emotional role models. Just by seeing their parents, kids can pick up a lot about controlling their emotions. If you see that you are feeling irritated, you may need to take a break. If you are unable to leave your child, try practicing calm breathing. It’s acceptable to tell your kid you’re upset. By demonstrating to kids that everyone has challenging emotions occasionally and that they are controllable, it sets a positive model for them. Healthy screen behaviors must be modelled by parents as well. Your child may be picking up this tendency if you frequently use screens as a way to block out negative emotions.
  2. Prioritize a deep nurturing connection. It is important that parents are warm and affectionate to their children. Even older children need to feel connected to us or they can’t regulate themselves emotionally. If you notice your child getting dysregulated, the most important thing that we can do is try to reconnect. Parents do not need to plan some big outing to connect with their child.  It can be as simple as taking a walk together, or playing a game that they enjoy. Face-to-face connection and human interaction are important.
  3. Put a strong, caring connection first. It’s critical that parents show their kids affection and warmth. Even older kids need to feel a connection to us in order to control their emotions. The most crucial thing we can do is try to reconnect with your child if you notice that they are becoming dysregulated. To bond with their child, parents may not necessarily need to organise a large outing. It might be as easy as going for a stroll or playing a game together.
  4. Instead of beating or shaming, encourage behaviorism. A youngster learns that the emotions that caused them to “behave badly” when they are chastised for crying or smacked for being angry. A youngster may attempt to repress those feelings when they arise. Then, when they resurface, your child may act out because those feelings are frightening to them.
  5. Assist your children in making themselves feel secure enough to express his feelings while controlling his behavior. Your child will feel secure enough to share the tears and concerns that may be the cause of their acting out if you can maintain your composure. If you can support them in crying, those emotions will vanish, and the anger and acting out will also change for the better.

Parents must stop and consider whether they are providing their children with screens as an emotional crutch in the digital age where displays are all around us. If so, what long-lasting behaviors are we fostering in our kids if we encourage them to turn to screens when they feel uncomfortable ? As parents, we must enable our children to experience their emotions and practice controlling them rather than stifling them online until they become numb if we want them to grow up to be strong, healthy individuals.

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