It’s time to write our 2014 resolutions. Here are a few that could be on most parents’ top 10 lists.
1. Commit to help children learn to do things for themselves.
Folding laundry, making a sandwich, working for their own pocket money will earn kids self-esteem. That will make them feel like true kings and queens.
2. Offer an alternative role model to Miley Cyrus.
It is true that kids look up to actors, sport personalities and Miley Cyrus. But the people children look up to the most are the grown-ups that don’t answer to parents. Guide your children to find role models that exude great morals and values.
3. Be the person you’d like your child to be.
We want our kids to be honest and kind, hard-working and we want them to enjoy spending time with the family. Their little sponge-like minds soak up and adopt everything they see to be true and right.
4. Kick the kids out of the house.
Bickering, fighting and grouchy kids, kids with ants in their pants are emotionally draining. Nothing takes the funk out of a child like a good big dose of fresh air. Don’t mind the weather too much; modern-day science has supplies such as thermal clothing, waterproof jackets and sunscreen with insect repellent to meet your every parenting need, i.e. maintaining sanity.
5. Stop saying you are not tech-savvy.
Scenario: When asked what she is doing, your 11-year-old daughter mutters out that she is tweeting Instagram screenshots from Vine videos she posted on Tumblr. Should you:
- follow her on Twitter,
- say “I smell something burning on the stove” and excuse yourself, or
- move to an 18th-century re-enactment community.
The answer is d). You need to understand what the heck she is talking about. Internet safety and know-how is part of today’s parenting.
6. Stop comparing your after-baby body to the bodies of new celebrity mothers.
Unless you have access to the following; full-time trainer, housekeeper, nutritionist, cook and nanny, you need to set reasonable goals for getting back in shape. Common wisdom says “nine months up in weight, nine months down”.
7. Don’t be a dangerous sports parent.
Please take potential head injuries seriously. Never allow yourself or an over-enthusiastic coach to risk permanently affecting your child’s brain for school sport. Not even when facing their arch enemy from down the road in the local league final.
8. Don’t overreact and wrap your kids in bubble wrap.
Teach your children how to reduce risks; bike helmets, seatbelts and hand-washing. With an abundance of safe playgrounds and designated play sites, remember human bodies are designed to withstand childhood bumps and bruises.
9. Cook a few green things.
Aim to prepare three nutritious, well-balanced meals every day and not only serve fast food or chicken nuggets for dinner. Until you morph into a gourmet chef, vow to add at least one fresh produce item to each meal – cut carrots, steamed broccoli, a side salad. You will get good at this, and then you can set the bar of culinary awesomeness a little higher.
10. Do volunteer work.
You may work several jobs, have a mob of kids, need more hours in a day. But you also know how much children benefit from sport and extra mural activities. Try to find an hour or two each month to help out. The rewards are endless.