It’s official, 2018 is over. It’s that time of year where we begin thinking about the things we’d like to change in the New Year. If you’re looking to make your home a healthier, happier place to be, you may want to consider adjusting your parenting habits.
By making changes which benefit everyone in the household, you’re guaranteed to have a great year ahead. The question is, what type of changes could you make in the year ahead? To help, here, you’ll discover 10 healthy parenting habits to start in 2019.
1. Resolve To Think Before You React
Let’s kick-start the list with potentially one of the most difficult parenting habits to adopt – thinking before you react. Or, more specifically, calming the mind before you react!
When you’re sleep deprived and constantly stressed trying to simply make it through the day, it’s easy to lose your temper quickly. Let’s face it, dealing with young children can really test your patience, especially when they’re going through their whining or tantrum phase! However, if you react angrily, it escalates the situation and further adds to your stress levels.
So, if you’re looking to lead a happier, healthier life next year, it’s a good idea to start being more mindful of how you react. The simplest and number one way to do this, is to take deep breaths before reacting. Close your eyes, take five deep breaths in and out, then respond to whatever it is your child wants or needs.
2. Growing Your Own Food
With growing pressure on the environment and a focus on healthy living, what better time to start teaching your kids about sustainable living? Growing your own food can be both fun and nutritional. It tastes so much better than the produce you buy at the grocery store and it’s cheaper too. In fact, growing your own fruits and vegetables can save you hundreds of dollars a year!
A lot of kids love to get out in the garden and grow their own food. Plus, there’s the additional benefit that they are also more likely to eat whatever it is they have grown. So, if you struggle to get them to eat healthy, getting them involved with growing their own food is a great idea.
3. Listen To Your Children More
Let’s face it, when you’re stressed out and busy just trying to make it through the day, listening to your child doesn’t exactly rank high on the priority list. It’s not that you’re a bad parent, it’s just difficult to concentrate and give your children your full attention when there’s so many other things to do. However, if you actually do stop and listen to your child, it helps to strengthen the connection and also encourages them to behave better.
In 2019, why not make it priority to start listening more? This doesn’t mean you need to be 100% present for every single conversation your child starts. However, it does mean taking the time to ensure they know you’re listening.
A lot of the time, behavioral problems stem from not being listened to. If your child feels ignored, they’re going to start acting up to try and gain your attention. When you listen, you show that you care, and you may even enjoy the interaction!
4. Get Involved In Your Local Community
Another great parenting habit to adopt in 2019, is to get involved with your local community. It’s never too early to get your children involved too.
By helping the community, you’re teaching your child the importance of helping others. It also gets you out of the house and socializing with the community. This can really help to build your child’s confidence and set them up to do more for their own community when they become an adult.
5. Go On More Field Trips
Life is about adventure, so why not commit to heading out on more field trips with the kids next year? You don’t need a huge budget to do this. You could head anywhere from nearby parks to museums and even spontaneous road trips.
Often, getting out of the house as a family can help you to bond and recharge your batteries. Plus, you’ll create lots of awesome memories together.
6. Create More Crafts Together
If you want to spend more quality time with your toddler, while also aiding in their development, creating crafts together is a great idea. Ideally, you’ll want to dedicate time on two-three days a week to making crafts.
There are so many great craft ideas and instructions online, so you’ll never run out of things you can make together.
7. Share The Bedtime Routine
How often do you and your partner share your toddler’s bedtime routine? If the answer is not very often, you may want to make that a priority in the new year. Not only does sharing the bedtime responsibilities ease your own workload, but it also gives your partner the opportunity to bond more with your toddler.
The trouble is, when only one parent takes care of the bedtime routine, your toddler gets used to that. So, if there is ever a time where that parent cannot be there to do the routine, it’s going to cause a lot of stress and a guaranteed meltdown on your toddler’s part! So, getting them used to going to bed with both parents is sure to eliminate a lot of stress.
8. Host A Weekly Sleepover
If your toddler sleeps through the night and has very few, if any, sleep issues, hosting weekly sleepovers can be an awesome way to spend time together. This basically involves inviting your toddler and your other young children if applicable, into your bedroom. They can sleep over in a tent or in a put together “sleeping spot” on the floor.
This gives them a camping experience that they’re sure to love. It also gives you something to look forward to as a family. You could stay up slightly later telling stories and bonding over a mug of hot cocoa.
9. Exercise Together
If you and the family could do with being a little fitter, why not make it a priority to exercise together in 2019? You could resolve to head out on more family walks, go cycling together or even join local classes. Why not try something new as a family such as ice skating, rock climbing or tennis?
Exercising together also takes the focus off the exercise too. So, you’ll end up having more fun, distracting you from the fact you’re actually exercising.
10. Teach The Art Of Giving
Finally, a great healthy parenting habit to adopt next year, is to teach your children the art of giving. A great way to do this is to get them to fill up a bag of any old clothes and toys they no longer use or want. Then, take them together to a local charity shop. You could do this before their birthday or Christmas to make it even more special. This will teach them about giving to those who are less fortunate.
So, there you have it – 10 healthy parenting habits to start in 2019 if you don’t already do them. Got any other ideas you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below!