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Picking Your Battles

Picking Your Battles

When you're in the throws of raising a toddler, it can be hard to recognize the little day-to-day things that we take for normal. For some of us, it's normal to have a screaming match with our little around lunch time when they refuse to eat anything but dry fruit loops. For others, it's common to hand over the cell phone when your kid decided they didn't need a nap and you need 5 min in the bathroom...alone. We're all just closing our eyes, taking a deep breath, and doing our best to pick our battles. The things that make us grit our teeth are not the same, but there are a few things we could all hear to help us when it comes to dealing with the tears, pinches, and smacks.

Decide what you can and can't live with.

Unfortunately, this isn't something I can really help with. Each of our kids is so absolutely and adorably different, and the way they behave in the family makes things even more complicated. The best advice I can give to all you stressed parents is to fight the battles that are giving you the hardest time and ignore the rest. For now. Close your eyes and think of the one thing that gets you inches away from losing it (and I mean really losing it). Got it? Well that's your battle. It's your job to keep yourself sane long enough to be a fun, loving, energetic parent to your littles, so if this battle keeps that from happening, then it's time to make a change. The rest can wait until the big kahuna is taken care of.

Kids are going to act like kids.

When it comes to working with our kids on behaviors, we need to remember that they will act like kids. Sometimes it will be hard for us to deal with. But do yourself a favor, and don't compare.

Don't make your life harder by comparing your child, their behaviors, or your parenting to anyone else. What usually happens when we compare is that we think about kids that aren't the same age or developmental level as our own. That only fuels the fire thinking your little one is worse than they really are. Take a step back, look at the big picture, and remember that our 2-year-olds are going to have meltdowns when they don't nap, and our 3-year-olds are going to struggle when they have to share with a younger sibling. Some things should be expected, and most of the time, all our little ones need is a quick hug, a drink of water, and a new game. The world WILL keep spinning. 

PC: biblestudy1.com

Consistency is your new best friend.

Now that you've thrown the gauntlet down, you can't fold. Toddlers are going to fight and they are going to fight hard. You're probably not going to be their favorite person, but that's okay. I promise. If you fold when the going gets tough, they're going to make it even harder on you. I promise. So hang in there, sing a happy song, and do your best to stick with it. Your mental health will thank you later.

It's up to us to make sure that the habits our toddler forms now won't set them back when they start school, try to make friends, or deal with difficult situations. You got this! XO

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