Your child is acting out, again. They feel misunderstood and unappreciated. They are acting uncooperative or are being uncommunicative. How do you stop this downward spiral? How do you regain a happy and healthy relationship with your child? Take the time to understand your child’s point of view. This is how:
Importance of understanding your child’s point of view
Just like an adult, your child wants someone to take the time to understand who they are. Unfortunately, a child doesn’t have the same thinking patterns and knowledge of an adult, so it can be tricky to understand their point of view.
When they cry, throw a tantrum or act out they aren’t necessarily just trying to act badly, but are trying to communicate their exhaustion, hurt, frustration or anger. They don’t yet have the coping skills to communicate with you appropriately, so they act out inappropriately. As parents, it’s our job to take the time to look at the issue from their point of view to figure out why they acted as they did.
Your child wants you to take the time to really listen to them and understand where they are coming from. This will help your child’s behaviour because they feel that they have been able to truly express themselves and be heard. It will help you to figure out the root causes behind your child’s behaviour. Understanding your child’s point of view will also create a closer relationship between you and your child because they feel like you truly care about what they think.
Understanding your child’s personality type
An important way to understand your child’s point of view is to understand their personality. Hippocrates was an ancient Greek philosopher. He was the first person to start to define different personalities that people have and he laid the foundations of current personality evaluations.
There are 4 different personalities:
- Choleric is your strong willed, adventurous, and leadership type personalities
- Sanguine is your social, playful and creative type personalities
- Melancholy is your detail and task oriented type personalities
- Phlegmatic is your thoughtful, dependable and diplomatic personality
Think about your child and their personality. Once you understand their personality, then you can start to understand the motivations behind what your child does and how they think. Afterwards, you can use this knowledge to understand your child’s point of view.
Understanding Your Child’s Point of View
Once you understand your child’s personality, then you can start to look through your child’s eyes. Ask yourself, “Why is she doing something? What does she need or want?” Once you can pinpoint the “why” behind a behaviour then you can start to help them get what they truly need.
For example, next time your child has a meltdown in the store because they want a toy. Instead of getting upset, use it as an opportunity to look through their point of view. Ask yourself these questions:
- Is my child tired?
- Is my child hungry or thirsty?
- Does someone else have that toy that makes them want it?
- Do they think if they have a meltdown then they will get the toy?
If you identify that your child is tired, hungry or thirsty then it’s pretty easy to figure out what they need to fix their behaviour. Until that underlying problem is solved, your child is going to continue having meltdowns over everything. They aren’t as in control of their emotions as they normally would be because they need a nap or a snack.
Your child may also cry because they they know someone else has the toy or they think that their meltdown will get them a toy. Really listen to them, think about their personality type and try to look through their viewpoint. This will help you to phrase your explanation to them that they cannot have the toy.
Instead of just saying “no”, look at their point of view and respond to them with a reason that means something to them. Such as, “I’m sorry we can’t get the toy, but Billy got it as a special Christmas gift. Maybe we can put it on your Christmas list.”
Once you understand your child’s point of view, you can start to understand your child. Listen to your child and figure out your child’s personality to understand where they are coming from. Then use this information to understand what they truly need and how to effectively respond to them.
Do you try to see things from your child’s point of view? Perhaps you have some tips on how else this can be done? Do share in a comment below.
Author Bio: Cassie Brewer is a health professional. In her free time, she enjoys writing about her passion (healthy living of course!) and everything beauty related. Nothing makes her happier than helping other be the best version of themselves they can be. You can follow her on twitter @Cassiembrewer.