In this very different for everyone time, more than ever it's crucial to stay grounded, present and to focus on what's really important. We've all came to realisation that this unstable and unusual time has pushed us to re-connect with people we share the household with, take a closer look at our lives and evaluate the priorities and focus, re-calibrate in so many ways. Let's not get lost in the list of challenges we've all encountered, but direct our attention to what's really important when it comes to raising children, having a healthy and happy relationships with them and working towards reducing stress and anxiety.
To simplify things lets make it basic:
Make sure no matter how busy and insane your day might be, you can find sometime during the day to spend with your child. It doesn't have to be hours, and not even an hour, it has to be just your time with the child where you can allow yourself to forget about all the noise and chatter of the routines and chores and simply connect. Here we come to our next point.
Finding time might sound like a stressful task, if you are already overworked. But the good news you don't really need the quantity here, but the quality. It can be anything, either having an involved conversation about the day (without a computer, a phone, a TV and all other distractions), making breakfast together, reading something, a bedtime routine, maybe even just playing their favourite song and having a little fun singing it together. I'd say maybe don't include a homework as a quality time, because we all know how difficult it is for us and them to relax and have fun with it.
3. Good habits.
Help them to develop right discipline, hygiene, and healthy lifestyle habits. It's always good to take a closer look at yourself and your own habits before you try to teach those to your little (or not so little) ones. Always remember, our children learn best by observing us: if you try to limit their screen time and find yourself constantly with a phone in your hand or being on a computer all the time, how do you expect them to learn anything different... And here we don't mean the time you work, but rather the rest of your time. And if you want them to keep their room tidy, maybe find time to sort out the laundry together and guide them playfully through the process. It also helps to arrange things differently from time to time, as a fun interior design project, to give them opportunity to decide what would feel more comfortable for them, it can keep them motivated to maintain their own order.
This list could have been long and tiring, but to be honest we truly believe a healthy parenting starts with these basics, once these are a part of your daily life, only then it makes sense to dig deeper and go further. When you are able to disconnect from everything and everyone to spend time with your child, when they become a centre of your attention in the best caring, nurturing and loving expression of it, magic happens.
It's important to note that for these aspects to work, you need to take care of yourself too, stay present and grounder, which isn't the easiest of tasks these days, but there are things you can do for yourself too in this regard, which we will share in our next blogpost.