Any time of the year is a good time to try to develop new habits, but the new year offers the promise of a blank slate, which is part of the appeal of New Year’s resolutions. As a parent, I try to constantly improve myself in hopes that I become a better person and by default, a better parent. This year I’m going focus on five things that will make my year the best.
1. Practice Patience
A lot of days I feel overwhelmed and often that can lead to some serious frustration. When the kids do something that piles on top of everything else that I’m feeling, it can lead an explosive moment on my part, often for a minor transgression. For 2011, I’m going to work on remembering that the kids are not the source of most of my frustrations.
2. Live in the Moment
To often, I spend my days telling the kids that we’ll do stuff later. Yes, I have a very busy schedule as a full time working mom and yes, there is quite a bit of housework that needs to be done, but I’m going to work on spending time with the kids first and worrying about the remaining stuff later. There will be no tomorrow or yesterday, just today.
3. Lead by Example
For 2011, I intend to spend more time living my life the way I want my children to live their lives. There is no better role model for how to act than seeing a parent live it every day.
4. Give More Hugs
What child couldn’t use more hugs? Physical contact can be reassuring to children any time. My oldest child in particular responds to contact, even in the middle of a meltdown.
5. Hard Schedule Mommy Time
Last but not least is time for Mommy. I have frequently told myself that I am going to back more time for me. Taking some time for myself, doing activities that I enjoy make a big difference in how I feel and does wonders to reduce my stress levels. However, if something comes up, the first thing to go is Mommy Time. In the coming year, I am going to make firm plans for myself so that I can be a better parent for my children.
There are probably dozens of parenting resolutions that I could make for 2011, but I consider these the most important. I look forward to a happy and productive year of parenting!