Positive Parenting Changes for the New Year
By Michelle LaRowe, America’s Nanny
For many families, January not only signals the start of a New Year, it reminds us of the special opportunity we have to make important positive changes to our family lives.
Making annual family commitments, or resolutions, can help us better prioritize our family goals and live out our family values. New Year’s family resolutions can help us bring our families closer together by establishing weekly family rituals or by increasing our family health, by reducing the amount of times we dine out.
If your family is anything like mine, come January 1st we’ll be renewing our commitment to healthy eating and daily exercise, things that definitely got pushed to the wayside as soon as the holiday season begun.
Some other family resolutions worth considering are:
Implementing parent/child date nights. Setting aside one day or evening a month to share one on one time with your child goes a long way in fostering the parent/child bond and increasing the parent/child connection.
Having mommy/daddy date nights. Whether you sneak away for a picnic in the park or head out to a fancy restaurant, setting aside grownup time to spend together can help strengthen your marriage relationship.
Establishing weekly family night. Committing to spending one night a week doing something together as a family can increase the sense of family unity and facilitate family connections. Whether you play a board game, watch a movie or head to the bowling alley, doing something together is what counts.
Fostering a spirit of compassion. Volunteering at your local soup kitchen, “adopting” a child or setting aside money to give to a local charity, sharing your time and talent with others in need is a great way to teach compassion and foster a caring heart in your children.
Coming up with your new year’s resolutions is the easy part. Keeping them, for more than a week or two, is the hard part. Hanging a monthly dry erase calendar on your refrigerator, adding resolution commitments to your Blackberry and holding each other accountable for following through on the commitments you’ve made will help ensure you keep your family new year’s resolutions and end the year feeling good about yourself and your family for honoring the commitments you’ve made.
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