How To Parent Strong Willed Children

I have two VERY strong willed children! The most important thing for me to do as a mother is to SUPPORT the fire in them and TEACH them how to use it constructively rather than react and punish them for being destructive. I have trialled both and reacting to them is like a bomb going off in the house!

How do you know if you have if you have a strong willed child?

  • They ask for what they want (multiple times) even after you said no
  • Constantly interrupting you to do what they want
  • Ask them to do something and they do what they want
  • Interact with confidence
  • Not easily shaken, but when they are they are really upset

It is so easy to want to control my children. Force them to learn a lesson regardless of what the consequences may be for them. I might get upset with them because I am embarrassed by their behaviour or angry because I used to behave this way and it sparks an old memory. I forget that at the age they are, they have not fully developed their cognitive ability to choose before acting!

Understanding this, I have far better results as a parent when I teach them instead of react to them. I teach them about choice, and how each choice they make has a result. I teach them to understand that there are consequences that come from the choices they make. Essentially teaching them about cause and effect and giving them the freedom to make their own choices. This has been genius because I can’t be the bad guy when they have made a choice to behave poorly, especially after I educated them on the process.

Of course this has them get upset! They are angry that they have to live with the consequences of their actions! So, when they get upset at what they have chosen, I remind them that they have two choices. They can either turn the behaviour around on the spot by using one of the techniques below, or take themselves away up to their room to do it their own way.

All it is really is pent up energy surging through the body and they don’t know how to handle it. So the best way to release energy is through a physical action. Below are effective ways we personally use in our household to get out aggression constructively and it’s great for adults too!

  • Lion’s Breath: Open eyes and mouth fully, stick tongue out and down while letting out a great big HA sound from the belly. This might also sound like a growl.
  • Towel Scream: Roll up a towel and put it in a wide open mouth. With eyes wide open scream as long and as hard as you can.
  • The Tantrum: Throw yourself all over the bed punching and kicking the bed and grunting as desired. This can actually be fun and make you laugh!
  • 10 Breaths: Release the belly and count out 10 belly breaths (do not engage the shoulders)

Finish whichever selection you choose with three BIG theatrical sighs! Have fun with it!



2 thoughts on “How To Parent Strong Willed Children”

  1. Brilliant, my Darling daughter❣️ I’m so proud of you and Shane…. you are the best parents to your beautiful daughters & my granddaughters. You are becoming quite the author & teacher too. Your talents are many and I love watching how you use them & develops more. The world is your oster😘

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