10 Parenting Tools to Help You Through the Next Year
IS ONE OF YOUR NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS TO IMPROVE YOUR FAMILY RELATIONSHIP AND FEEL CLOSER TO YOUR CHILDREN? DO YOU NEED SOME IDEAS ON HOW TO MAKE THINGS BETTER AT HOME?
Every year, I review my prior year and look if I was able to achieve my goals and ultimately experience a better life. Four years ago, my husband and I had the goal to become parents, and at the end of 2013, we had our beautiful daughter, Liah. Since then, my resolutions for the year have changed. How wouldn't they, right?
They changed because now I had to fulfill a whole new role in my life: The one of being a parent. I’m sure you can relate that being a good parent is always a goal of yours, and one that you strive to be for the rest of your life, no matter how old your “babies” are.
Here are 10 ideas of things you can do this upcoming year to enhance your relationship with your children. Read through for a **bonus** tip!
HERE IS THE COUNTDOWN:
Spend 15 minutes a day one-on-one playing with your child. Let them choose the activity. Kids need your undivided attention to feel emotionally safe.
Find one new fun thing to do outside of your home with your kids that you haven’t done before. Doing something different keeps it fun and spontaneous. What kind of adventures would you like to see yourself and your children in this new year?
8. DINNER TIME
Have dinner with your children without watching television, or cell phones or tablets allowed, at least one time a week. Family dinner time is the easiest way to engage in meaningful conversations. Make them count!
7. YES/NO QUESTIONS
Avoid "yes" or "no" questions with your children. Instead of asking, “Did you have a good day today at school?" Ask, “What was something fun you did today at school?” This way, you will really learn what’s going on in their minds.
6. POSITIVE REASSURANCE
Focus more on what your child does well than not, and let them know that what they are doing is good. In today’s society, we tend to focus very much on the negatives. Focusing on what your child does well will motivate him or her on doing the right thing. Have you ever had a boss or teacher tell you regularly how good of a job you did? Did it make you feel motivated to do more? I bet it did.
5. CHILD'S FEELINGS
Listen to your child’s feelings and tell them what you think they are feeling. This will help them feel understood. For example: If your child comes home from school with a sad face, you can say: “You look sad, did something happen today? It’s okay to be sad. When you are ready, we can talk about it.”
4. STRUCTURE AND BOUNDARIES
Be consistent. Create structure at home and define boundaries. Create a weekly schedule and display it so that your child can reference them. Children thrive in structure.
Create a new family tradition. Think of what can be done around holidays, birthdays, or any time of the year that can become a fun activity to repeat each year.
2. POSITIVE RELATIONSHIPS
Nurture positive relationships with others. Whether it is with a significant other, relatives, or friends, children learn from what they see around them. If your child sees others respect you, care for you, have healthy fun with you, there will be higher chances that they will mimic that behavior.
1. TIME FOR YOURSELF
Make time for yourself. If you don’t have any family that can help with the kids, maybe get a fellow mommy that is in need of alone time as well and take turns taking care of each other’s children. You give a lot as a mom so you need to care for yourself to continue giving!
And a bonus tip here, and probably the most relevant: Minimize the time your children spend in front of a screen by providing other avenues of distraction and allowing for more family interaction.
Parenthood is a difficult and demanding job, and one that, at the same time, gives so much joy and love. I wish you a successful new year filled with harmony with your children. Make sure to stay connected to receive more free relationship and parenting tips by clicking here!
To Your Family Success!
Your Therapy Friend,
Sofia Robirosa is the owner of Infinite Therapeutic Services and is a Relationships & Parenting Expert. She offers individual, couples, and family counseling to individuals seeking to enhance their relationships. Her private practice is located in Plantation, FL. She attended Nova Southeastern University for both her Bachelor and Master Degrees in Marriage and Family Therapy and in Business Administration. She is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and a Leader in Active Parenting for children and teens, an evidenced based program. She is also a Certified Addictions Professional (CAP). She is a passionately committed therapist, who thoroughly takes pride and joy from her job. She enjoys working with a culturally diverse population and is bilingual in Spanish and English. She is a member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy and an active volunteer of the Broward Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. She loves her family, which consists of her husband, daughter, and two dogs. Some of her interests outside of work include spending time outdoors, traveling, and dining. Read more about her at: www.infinitetherapeuticservices.com and follow her on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/infinitetherapy/ Article Featured in www.localmomscoop.com on 1/16/2015.