I've got some tips on How To Reason With Your Toddler. Sometimes it's not so easy when it comes to reasoning with a stubborn little human being. If you can't tell, I clearly have some experience in this department. My son is a very strong willed little man. It has taken a lot of time and patience in the last couple years and finally I feel like I have come to a point where I am able to sway situations in my favor; most of the time. Of course, anything I ask of him is an astounding, NO! But we have come a long way.
GIVE THEM CHOICES
Things have gotten easier once I started giving my son some choices. He knows that if he refuses to do something, say, eat his vegetables or go potty when I ask, he can choose to go to bed instead. You can use time out, bed time, or anything they would rather not do as your other choice. By doing this, it makes them feel in control because they chose the latter. It's when they say, "Okay, Nunight Mama" is when you're really screwed. If this happens, follow through and then go get them after a few minutes. (This is a trick I was taught by my awesome sister in law. She's got some great ideas up her sleeve. Check her out!)
Most times, toddlers just want to do what they want. If you explain to them why they can't do something, it might make them understand a bit better. Toddlers are like little sponges, they remember pretty much EVERYTHING! If you make it a habit to explain things in a way they can understand, they may stop asking to do things they shouldn't. Or not. It's a toss up.
If the top two don't help, redirecting your toddler usually works wonders. For example, we go to Target A LOT. Literally every time we walk through those big red doors, my son starts chanting "CAKE POP, CAKE POP, CAKE POP" while pointing at Starbucks. He slowly but surely gets louder and louder until a tantrum is moments from happening. Now, I'm totally not against cake pops; however, if we indulge in one, I know nap time is out the window for the day. And that's not cool. So, instead of giving in, I will redirect him into helping me pick out a snack or maybe even a little toy that he can have. At the moment, he's obsessed with Disneys Tsum Tsum's. You know, the ones that look like hamster shaped Disney characters? That's my go-to redirection, and for now, it works like a charm. For the low cost of $2.99, and the fact that it keeps him occupied and happy for my entire shopping trip, I call it a MOM WIN!
Unfortunately, there are those days that your toddler will not be down for any of these tricks up your sleeve and it will eventually turn into a time out. If you're out in public, although it's totally a pain in the butt, pick up your little one and explain to them that they have to leave because of their behavior. Bring them to the car and buckle them in until they calm down and explain that they are in time out. Revert back to my first piece of advice and give them the choice of going home or returning back to the store. Hopefully they don't choose home, because then you're screwed! ;-p