Setting Limits While Staying Close to Children

Children are loving, passionate, eager experimenters, artists, problem-solvers, philosophers. In contrast to their loving nature, all children (like adults) experience times when they are “not themselves”. They become unreasonable, they cannot listen or respond thoughtfully to the situation around them. Their behavior goes “off track” and they begin doing things that don't work, that make people angry and that isolate them from other people.

At times like these we are challenged. We want to treat our children well and help them develop positive selfesteem, but they are not being reasonable. Every effort we make to help them seems to send them further “off track” and frustrate us more.

This is when they need us to set limits for them. They need to know we care and that we remember they are good. They also need to know that they can rely on us to help them find their way out of the “behavior trap” they have fallen into.

The task is complicated because the behaviors of the children often evoke feelings of anger, powerlessness and frustration in us. When we try to stop “unreasonable” behaviors in children, we are in a position which can impact their self-esteem either positively or negatively.

This talk will give some hands on techniques about how to set firm limits on challenging behaviors while showing the caring and kindness which leads to positive self-esteem in children, and how to get help for the inevitable times when we feel like saying or doing something we will regret later.




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