As your little one grows you'll start to notice his distinct personality rear its head—suddenly, your cuddly little baby is a fast-growing toddler with opinions and demands. You may fin that you have to adapt your parenting style to suit the person your child is becoming. Different characteristics pose different challenges, so here are some hints as to how best to cope with some of the more common personality traits of toddlers!
Easygoing children tend to be bright and happy by default, are adaptive to change and do well in social situations. It sounds like a perfect deal, but there are a few unique challenges to this personality type that may not seem that obvious. The main risk is that an easygoing child may become lost in the crowd, losing attention to others with more demanding personalities. It’s essential to make sure they get a good amount of attention to avoid them starting to pick up negative traits of other, more forceful kids. Watch for the signs of them needing something—just because the cues can be subtle at times doesn’t mean they’re not there!
These children tend to be quite shy and clingy, much preferring to watch others than join in and assessing situations before taking action. They take a while to warm up in new situations and tend to be very wary of strangers, or indeed people they see on a semi-regular basis. The most important thing to remember with this personality type is that you shouldn’t rush them; it may be tempting to throw them in at the deep end, particularly if they’re in an especially clingy mood, but this can often turn out to do more harm than good. Ease them in slowly, offering a mix of the familiar with new things. For example, help break the ice with visiting relatives by letting them offer your child a favourite toy as a hello rather than grabbing them for a hug. On the plus side, children like this tend to have great concentration and problem solving abilities, as long as you give them enough time.
This personality type can be one of the most physically demanding. They are very strong-willed and energetic, the problem being that their sheer amount of energy can overwhelm them and all around them! The key with these children is that you need to maintain a balance; it’s important to allow them to burn off their energy with lots of physical play, but on the other hand if things get too raucous they can get overstimulated and cranky! Make sure you are clear and concise when talking to a child like this, as they can be impulsive and lacking in attention span. Having said all this, these children can be extremely entertaining and passionate, and, while their low points can be horrible, the high points more than make up for it.
While an easygoing child has no problem in social situations, a fearless child will be the one going and seeking said situations out for themselves! These children are extremely confident, almost to a fault. They’re the ones who are nosying in your cupboards, wandering out of your line of sight and chatting with others without a second thought. Fearless kids can benefit from being treated older than they are at times, and while it’s important to keep some tabs on them, their independent nature isn’t something that should be smothered. Try letting them try to help around the house, have a go with toys for older children or sometimes relaxing the rules depending on behaviour and situation (for example, being a bit flexible with bedtime from time to time). It will help boost their self esteem, not to mention make them more likely to work with you rather than ignoring you!
The important thing to remember is to work with yur little one, letting him grow naturally at his own pace, rather than forcing him to be somebody he is not. You’ll find it much less stressful, and you’ll wind up with a happy and self-assured child.