Learning how to discipline a 2 year old isn’t straight forward. Toddlers are notoriously hard to handle and with developmental changes, your job can go from hard to impossible.
The key to effective discipline is empathy and patience.
Related: Time Out For 2 Year Old
How To Discipline A 2 year Old That Doesnt Listen
Disciplining a toddler will never be one-size-fits-all. Learning how to discipline a two year old means understanding your toddler and working constructively with their triggers.
Most toddlers learn to interact in similar ways. Through repetition and positive re-enforcement, you can understand how to discipline a 2 year old without yelling.
The key is consistency.
Most toddlers learn very quickly from their parents. This is great if you are a patient parent, but what if you have a short temper?
Toddlers inherit both the good and bad aspects of your character and this can be detrimental if left unchecked.
If you fail to focus on a structured discipline plan you’ll find yourself having to constantly battle with your toddler. This will be an uphill struggle as you battle to enforce rules and morals with a toddler that is seeking their own character and expression.
Learning how to discipline a 2 year old that hits is a good example. It’s an uphill struggle as you battle to enforce rules and morals to a toddler that is seeking their own character and expression.
How To Discipline A 2 Year Old: 3 Effective Ways
1. Listen and Empathy
Toddlers learn at an astonishing rate. However, they are not always able to communicate this to you.
With rules and regulations that seem never-ending and new and exciting things to learn it can be a very complicated world for a toddler.
When you take into account physical and mental changes, it’s not surprising that the terrible 2 stages affect most toddlers. We can, however, help the situation by listening and being empathic.
Take time to put yourself in your toddler shoes. You know your toddler more than any other person, so use this to your advantage.
Listen to their problems and frustrations without providing too many solutions. Be empathic in your interactions and caring in your choice of words:
‘Sweetie, I know it’s difficult to understand right now, but it’s important you know that the TV doesn’t go on until you eat your breakfast’
Learning how to discipline a 2 year old that doesnt listen requires being attentive to their specific wants and needs. Too often parents are so busy with the day to day routines that they forget to see the world from their toddler’s view.
Giving them some extra screen time on a busy day when you have 101 things to do won’t hurt them, as long as it’s not too regular and they start to expect.
This will help you learn how to discipline a 2 year old without yelling too.
2. Don’t smack or hit your toddler.
Furthermore hitting your child is not solving the problem at hand. Rather it’s making it worse as your toddler realises that hitting is an acceptable way to express themselves.
You’ve heard the stories of siblings hitting one and other. Sometimes it is just innocent play but other times it has been copied.
After evaluating the reason you can sometimes tell that a parent may have hit the toddler in a rage, once or twice, and this has formed a pattern of acceptable behaviour.
Importantly, try to limit your toddler’s interaction with violence they witness on TV. Many cartoons the are PG still have a wide variety of aggression and violence that can sometimes go unnoticed.
This will help you to learn how to discipline a 2 year old that hits and even limit aggressive behaviour all together.
This one usually has parents thinking your crazy, but stay with me.
The best way to help your child’s tantrum is to not engage in it. This means that it will eventually run out of steam.
In the temper tantrum state, most toddlers can’t be controlled and it is difficult to talk them out of a tantrum.
It is better to ignore the tantrum (whilst left in s safe place) and let the tantrum come to an end. Once it has, assure your child that you love them and carry on with your day.
Remember, you are not ingorning you, child. The tantrum is probably a cry for attention or a plea for help. Instead, you are ignoring the communication technique.
shouting, crying and kicking are not acceptable ways to communicate and by engaging in it you may be making things worse.
Instead, take a step back, let them cool down and then reinforce your rules once it is clear to do so.
4. Establish Limits
The key to figuring out how to discipline a two year old is to establish limits. Your toddler doesn’t know what’s right or wrong yet, and it’s your job to teach them.
When you see them doing something wrong, don’t just punish them and leave it there. Take time also to explain why what they did was terrible and why they shouldn’t do it again.
By knowing that they can’t always do what they want, your child will also learn self-control.
5. Remove Temptation
It’s easy for your 2-year old to be distracted by something shiny or pointy, even when it’s a bad thing. One smart how to discipline a two year old trick is to remove temptation.
Eliminate this possibility by keeping such things locked up or out of reach. As you do this, help your child explore the world by teaching them what’s safe and what isn’t for them to touch and be around.
6. Time Out
Toddlers are super active as they are at an age where they are discovering who they are and the world around them. This means that they can be hard to keep track of sometimes and maybe into something dangerous.
When this happens, give them a time out for a few minutes in a quiet corner of the room. They’ll hate sitting still, especially if they can see activity around them, and they’ll be less likely to repeat the behavior.
7. Stay Consistent
Your 2-year old has a very fluid memory, and being predictable in how you deal with bad behavior. This will help them to see the pattern and make them better behaved in the long run. Ensure that your disciplinary measures are always the same to establish a routine.
This will help you learn how to discipline a two year old.
Keep It Short and Sweet
When explaining to your toddler why what he/she has done is wrong, avoid using long, complex sentences. This is because your 2-year old’s mind hasn’t developed enough to completely understand what you’re saying, and it’s not an excellent disciplinary tactic. Instead, use short sentences and phrases, with a lot of gestures and voice tones.
Learning how to discipline a 2 year old involves knowing when to actively get involved and when to take a step out.
By taking these steps into consideration you’ll jump-start your parenting techniques and engage in more proactive parenting that will eventually prompt self-discipline!