As the presents under the Christmas tree piles up, and yet more are to come since grandma and grandpa have not yet arrived with their armful of gifts; feeling overwhelmed is common. Even if this is all very exciting and joyful, we forget that it is still an overwhelming emotion and we can easily be tipped over to feeling anxious. This theory applies to all of us, of all ages. Therefore, wouldn’t it be important to keep an even keel anticipation for all?
Chances are, you are still telling your child the Elf on the Shelf is still watching you. How to remind you child to be good: stick to your routines, distract your child from the tree with other activities that he or she always enjoy doing (at this point, even the hour long MineCraft might be a better option), creating Thank You cards for Santa, his elves, his reindeer and of course the Elf on the Shelf. Using statements such as, "Santa and his elves work so so hard to make sure your gifts come to you, how about putting in a little more colors on your card, think of the all nice things he is doing now and saying thank you to all of that." As a parent you put in the effort to make Christmas joyful for your little ones, now let's have your little ones learn to put in an effort to thank Santa (you) for this.
When you child tantrums, at this point I would stay away from statements alluding to 'you have been bad, and Santa will not bring you your gift' because you know you are not going to follow through with it. (Granted if you are that type of a parent, kudos to you and I say go for it.) Otherwise, I would say, "Please go to your room, I am sorry to see you are upset, but you need to learn to calm yourself down." Or something like,"Let me know if I can help you calm down, but no is no." and "No amount of crying and yelling is going to get you out of this." Any variation of these statements will help "you" stay calm and get the message across to your child. If you are going to sound like a broken record, make it count:, "I am sorry you are upset, however no is no. Let's find a way to calm down so we can move on." Deep breaths mom and dad; deep breaths, hold and exhale slowly.
Children and adults are excitedly anxious, or just anxious and easily frustrated, however it will all be over in a few days. Almost there! Teaching your child appreciation will help you feel good about guiding your child on how to be respectful, and helping them calm down will make your day easier.
Have a smooth celebration and may your hearts be filled with peace and stability. If you are curious to learn more statements to say to your child, feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org