Every year we state our New Year’s resolutions, those goals we want to achieve for the New Year. Most goals are the obvious ones like quit smoking, lose weight, or learn to budget our money better. However, what if you are a parent and want to be a better one? You will create resolutions, or goals, to hopefully achieve by the end of the year. Those goals will help you be an even better parent so here to get you started are my New Year’s parenting resolutions.
Stop nagging – I nag way too much at my children to do their chores or pick up after themselves. I hate nagging as much or more than they hate hearing me nag at them. I keep telling them I am going to post their chore list on the refrigerator and deduct from their allowance every time they don’t do something. However, I have never bothered to follow through with my threat. For the New Year, I am going to follow through with the list in the hopes that they will read the list and do what they need to do without me telling them at all. I must not say a word to them, and if they don’t do the chores, then I just need to do whatever it is and keep some of their allowance.
Quality time – I have always tried to have a family night in which we eat a frozen pizza and rent movies from Redbox. I feel spending quality time together is important to building a good family. However, there are times when we get busy, too busy to maintain this weekly ritual. As my children continue to grow older, I fear that this will become harder and harder to maintain, but for now, I want to stick to it as best we can. One night a week, preferably Saturday night, my children and I will have something special for dinner whether it is fixing a frozen pizza at home or eating at a local restaurant, and then we will rent movies from Redbox. I prefer Saturday night because we must get to bed at a decent hour in order to get up for church the next morning.
Be positive – While I feel pretty positive most of the time, the negative slips out quite a bit, and I don’t really like that. I find the negativity leaking to my children as well at times so while I realize we all have our bad days and we are entitled to some negativity once in a while, I would like to see the negativity kept to a very minimum. I will need to set the standard and make sure I am as positive as I can be. As the parent, I am my children’s role model, and they look to me for the positive things in life.
Teach responsibility – As my children have gotten older, I am teaching them more and more responsibility. I feel this is one of the most important things we can do as a parent because responsibility is something they will need to know as an adult themselves. As I teach them this trait, I realize at the same time that I must learn to let go and let them learn their own lessons in life. For instance, when my son got into trouble at school, he had to pay the consequence for what he had done, and I couldn’t bail him out of it. Hopefully, he learned his lesson and will change his behavior. I can’t be there every step of the way and bail them out for everything bad that happens to them.
Cherish every moment – As my children are facing the loss of their first grandparent, I am thinking about how we go through life taking things for granted. We need to slow things down a bit and savor every moment we can because you never know what will happen and when it will happen. This definitely goes along with spending quality time with your family. I cherish the moments that we can play a board or video game together or laugh at the funny parts of a movie or have the greatest time on a summer vacation. Those are the moments we can treasure even after someone is gone from our lives forever. The hard part is teaching our children how important those small moments are while they are happening. Until they lose their first grandparent or lose someone close to them who they love dearly, they don’t truly realize how important these moments are until they are no longer.