Showing posts with label creative methods. Show all posts
Showing posts with label creative methods. Show all posts

Monday, 27 August 2012

Using creative methods to break the bad habits in children

It is natural for a child to have some habits inhibited in them. But if they are bad then it becomes very difficult for the parents and the tutors to break these habits. Hence; I have dedicated this blog in solving this concern by providing creative methods to break the bad habits in children.

I am a firm believer of the fact that children are fast grasper of the facts. Whatever they see from the surroundings they adopt it sub-consciously hence it is very important to keep their immediate environment free from contagious and bad habits. Sometimes they follow certain traits from their parents which are not good like shouting very loudly with each other, bad mouthing in front of the child or speaking badly about someone in presence of the child. These things have tremendous affect on the child in the long term. Hence; it is very important to keep a check on your activities as mature adults as see to it that children are not seeing things that should be avoided in front of them. Some of the basic bad habits in children constitute of biting nails, nose picking, not answering courteously to immediate circle for example saying please, thank you and sorry in day to day life, thumb sucking and knuckle cracking. Now these things become habits in the long term which are very difficult to break even during early adulthood. Hence; parents and tutors need to take adequate actions in order to curb these habits from children.

Now these habits are not formed with one instance but when they sub-consciously follow the same things over time they become habits which are quite difficult to break. It is also very easy to distinguish a good habit from a bad habit. For example; reading a comic book is a good habit for a child but biting nails is a bad habit. Once these habits are formed subconsciously it is very difficult to stop them. Now these habits form due to external pressure, anxiety or to release tension. Parents need to very patient with the child when the first observe these bad habits. It is very easy to punish the child when you see them with doing these activities. But by punishing them, you are encouraging them to continue with the activities for longer time. Rather than using the stick as an option, try to use the other approach of making the child understand the negative aspects of the habit.

Before I enumerate different creative methods of curbing these bad habits let me depict a quote from Rob Gilbert,

First we form habits, then they form us. Conquer your bad habits or they will conquer you.

As we can see if the habits are not broken quickly they become very vicious which can be very destructive for the child. Hence; let me now get to the point and give you various creative methods which can help parents to break the bad habits in children:

  • Have a frank talk with the child: See without speaking with the child it will be very difficult for you to help them out. Hence; try to be patient with them and explain the various negative things that can happen if they continue with the habit. Initially ask them the reason for developing this habit. If it is because of some form of pressure or tension; ask them to look for other activities that can help them divert their attention from this habit. This way they will discontinue habit without any force.
  • Give positive reinforcement when you find the child discontinuing the habit: When you find that the child does not follow the bad habit for a particular time period observe them carefully and then give them encouragement, thereby reinforcing the successes that they have achieved by discontinuing the habit for the duration and then call attention to the setbacks that can be overcome if they discontinue with this habit. Set a new goal for the child and ask them to curb their bad habit for particular number of days. This will help the child to gain confidence and be very effective in curbing their habit permanently.
  • Ask them to make a commitment to their family about discontinuance of the habit: This is one of the best motivating methods that can influence the child to give up on the habit. Ask them to make a promise in front of the entire family including grandparents, family friends and teachers. This way everyone will support them to break free from this habit.
  • Teach relaxation techniques to the child: Nail biting, sucking thumb are attributes of nervousness which can be curbed with the help of relaxation techniques. Ask them to practice breathing techniques. They should also try for positive self-talk whenever they feel stressed out or nervous.
  • Patience is the best virtue: Since habits are not formed overnight. It will be difficult to change them instantly. Have patience and try to reduce the number of times the child is repeating the habit in a day. Once it is reduced considerably you can aim for the complete eradication of the habit. But if for some reasons, it is not possible to reduce the habit then it is always recommended to visit a mental health professional to get proper treatment of the child. But this method is normally only used in serious cases where the habit cannot be curbed through behavioral intervention.
Normally you would see parents using force to curb these habits from the child. But since I have always tried to solve concerns using creative means; I wanted to display different methods which will not only help the child overcome these bad habits but will also make them realize the importance of keeping a relaxed mind and healthy body for building good habits.

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