Refresh and Reset for the New Year
The New Year is a great time to reflect and set goals for the new year. The standard resolutions don’t seem to change much – lose weight, eat healthy, hit the gym. This year is different. As we trudge through this pandemic families are focused on how to love and care for their loved ones. Here are some tips that will help keep your family strong in 2021!
Give your Attention: One of the best gifts you can give your children is your attention, but it needs to be your full attention. Commit to spending one-on-one time with each of your children, just ten minutes a day can help improve your relationships with your children AND reduce negative behavior. Listen to what they have to say, take the time to look at them when they are talking and show they have your full attention.
Yell Less, Breath More: Parenting is hard, but it is critical for parents to keep their cool. Yelling is the least productive way to manage behavior. If you feel your self-getting worked up, take a second and breath, count to ten before responding or even walk away for a few minutes. It is okay to tell your kids you need a second before you respond because you are upset. This will also set a good example for your kids when they get upset.
Slow Down: The fast pace of our society has made parenting more difficult than ever before. Some of the most difficult times as a parent are transitions; trying to get from school to soccer practice or dance class, etc. It is important to spend relaxed time together as a family. A slow Saturday morning spent as a family playing board games can encourage family bonding.
Stay the Course: Kids will do just about anything to get to get what they want. Crying, whining, and negotiating. Be sure to stay true to yourself if your answer is ‘no’, then stick to it! Remember the breathing and counting to ten strategies when you get frustrated. Take your time when responding to your children and do not say something you don’t mean.
Be good to yourself: Happy parents are better parents. Make sure you take care of yourself. Rely on family and friends to give you the break you need. Consider doing the same for a friend or neighbor. If you are completely exhausted, you are no good for anyone! Consider other calming activities like taking a hot bath, listening to some music, or reading a book. If you feel like you need a break but nervous to leave your children with a friend or family member, check out our Kids Care Plus childcare center!
This year focus on resolutions that can improve your family dynamic and daily life. Sign up for our parenting class, our upcoming Virtual Parenting Cafe on January 9th from 12-2pm, or our Webinar on January 27th at 1:30pm focused on punishment versus discipline. We have a 24/7 Parenting HelpLine: 1-800-243-7337 and an online chat feature on our website: www.familytreemd.org.
As always, feel free to call our Parenting HelpLine at 1-800-243-7337!
For more New Year’s Resolutions for your children: Healthy New Year’s Resolutions for Children & Teens – HealthyChildren.org