Getting Past a Child’s Perfectionism: What Drives Children’s Rigid Behaviors?

Have you noticed that sometimes your child just becomes rigid?

Say he is building a tower and decides the next block for the tower “has to be” the red block. The one after “has to be” blue?

Or, he wants the cars all lined up the “exact same way”

Or she cannot allow any cups on a table while she is coloring?

This week we’re looking at the times a children’s behavior becomes rigid and what’s at the root of a child’s “perfectionism.”

We look at how these behaviors form. How the brain perceives and codes danger and how this plays out in a child needing to do things in a Very.Exact.Way over and over again and how placating this can propel the behavior.

On this week’s Hand in Hand podcast:

  • Sorting rigid behavior from particular behavior
  • Why we end up walking on eggshells when behavior gets rigid and how we can avoid this
  • We talk about two tools you can use to re-write those codes
  • Supporting the child through the feelings they have about a situation and letting them know if life turns outside differently.
  • Establishing a growth mindset and modeling resilience yourself around your child rather than teaching it
  • What messaging about mistakes are your passing down, and how can you get past your own perfectionism?

When a child decides that things have to be perfect, there are often big feelings lurking behind. Getting to the point where the code is revealed can also help it get rewritten. Listen in this week and get ways to help your child past the perfectionism.

Listen to Getting Past a Child’s Perfectionism here

More resources for Getting Past a Child’s Perfectionism

Here’s the video from Carol Dweck on growth mindsets and building resilience

This e-book on How Children’s Emotions Work helps you understand your child’s emotional life and shares practical solutions for support

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