4 ways To Teach Anger Management
4 Ways to Teach Anger Management
4 Ways to Teach Anger Management
Parents report anger management problems with their kids these days regarding anger and out of control anger in particular. It is really a common problem and many parents are facing it. A lot of parents think they are doing something wrong, but you are not. It is something happening culturally across the board. Whatever the issue is, it is rampant in our society. People are working on ways to deal with it and how to manage it, why it is happening and what to do about it. Today, I just want to talk about a few very simple ideas for teaching kids how to handle their anger when they have it. You can do most of these from a very young age.
1. Yell in a Pillow
One thing you want to do is teach kids anger management is how to yell in a pillow. You might have heard this before from therapy. But you can do it at home with your kids. Parents can teach their kids. Instead of yelling and screaming, you can put your face in a pillow and scream at the top of your lungs. It is kind of fun to do this with your kids. Show them because often they are afraid that this much anger, this much noise is going to get you mad or get them in trouble so they are afraid to do this. When you do it with them, it makes it safe. When it is safe for them to do, it is something they can learn to do on their own when they need to vent their anger. Screaming in the pillow is one.
2. Color in Red
Another idea for anger management is to teach coloring or drawing with red crayon or red pen. Something about the red and scribbling or drawing on a piece of paper is really helpful in moving the anger through children. Adults can do this as well. Again, sitting down with your kids and showing them how it is done. Moving through your anger can really help them and make it safe.
3. Water Balloon Treatment
Another great way to get out anger is to fill up water balloons. Take your child outside with a bucket of water balloons and throw them against the wall. Something about that water balloon smashing against the wall is really helpful when kids are having anger management problems. I actually gave this suggestion to the staff at Casa Pacifica. They have children who have a lot of problems and they found it very helpful, especially with the teenagers. They have this tool to use for the kids to deal with anger when they have it.
4. Express Anger with Words
Finally, just allow anger with your words. When you notice that your child is angry, instead of saying “don’t be angry” or “it’s not okay to be angry,” you want to say things like: “It’s okay to be angry, it is not okay to kick me.” “It’s okay to feel mad but it’s not okay to bash the door in.” “It’s okay to tell your sister you are angry with her but it’s not okay to hit her.” You want to acknowledge that the feeling is okay, it is the action that they take as a result of having the feelings that can be problematic. You want to give them other suggestions. One thing that is really helpful with 4, 5 and 6-year-olds is to give them three alternative suggestions. “Instead of hitting your sister, what are three other things you can do” and help them figure it out.
- “Well, I could go run around outside
- I could go draw something or
- I can tell her that I do not like when she does that.”
Often, this will give them alternatives. I hope this will help whenever you have problems with anger with your kids. Happy parenting!