Turning Timeouts to Positives

As some of you may know, before becoming a mom I was a special education teacher. It was a very rewarding job and allowed for a lot of professional development that I can use in the future, should I chose to go back to work.

One of my favorite parts of being a teacher was working on behaviors. I love analyzing behaviors, creating plans to change behaviors and finding different strategies that work with different children.

Since becoming a mom, I’ve found that discipline is so much harder. As a mom, I hold my own children to a much higher standard. After all, I am the one raising them -they should know better. Am I right moms? A mom once told me that no one could make her more angry than her own children. I have found this to be so incredibly true.

Well, if you’re a mom, you probably know…. no child is perfect. Every child needs to be taught correct behavior and it’s not always easy.

I’ve also found that the “terrible twos” are not terrible at all. It’s a time of learning. Toddlers need to learn correct behavior, be taught boundaries, and discover cause and effect.

Hat // River Raised
Romper // Rad Revolution

I have also found that it is so incredibly hard to stay positive sometimes! So I’ve created a list of ways to turn disciplining my toddler into positive learning experiences.

I am a big believer of “Love and Logic strategies, as well as natural and logical consequences. I highly encourage researching or taking a class on Love and Logic.

Here are 5 tips to stay positive when you don’t like your toddler’s behavior:

1.) Turning “Timeouts” into “Break time” – I make it clear that he is not in trouble, and that he just needs to sit and calm down. I taught him to take deep breaths and rest his body.

2.) Allowing for sensory breaks. This was huge for me as a teacher. I am now realizing how beneficial it is for my own children. Sensory activities can include art/rice bins/ playdoh and basically any activity that stimulates the five senses, is self directed learning and self directed exploration.

3.) Social stories – These do a great job of explaining situations to children.

4.) Empathy – This one is huge. Making a child feel genuinely bad about their poor behaviors is far more effective than yelling or punishment.

5.) Unconditional Love – the most important thing is making sure your child knows that you still love him or her. Your relationship should always come first!


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9 Responses

  1. I love the part about turning time out into break time, that's seriously the best way to put it! I have a 2 year old daughter and she gets a little wild sometimes as they do, but I don't really want to punish her because she's only 2 and still learning. Thank you so much for sharing! Passing this along to my mama friends. 🙂

  2. Break time is so helpful sometimes. 2 is a crazy age, and sometimes they just need to chill out!

  3. maca atencio says:

    I loved loved this post! I need to change my time out strategy so this is perfect timing 🙂


  4. So glad you found this helpful!

  5. Kim S says:

    This is definitely a hard time for me with my toddler. She likes to get angry and I'm not sure how I need to discipline or teach her about the right ways to act.

  6. How old is she?? I'd love to offer tips and support. I'm looking for ideas for more blog posts as well & would love to know what sort of info my readers are interested in!

  7. Man it's crazy how soon discipline comes into the picture. My daughter is only 16 months and it's begun! Love these tips

  8. Melrakes says:

    I love the sensory break tip! Sometimes I'm like ooooh man we need to just remove ourselves from this situation and return when we are ALL in a better place!

  9. Great tips! We do break time and it helps so much! I want to go to a love & logic class but there are never any in my area!

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