Children grow up so fast, and their childhoods are so fleeting, that it is essential we, as parents, are able to be present for them and with them as much of the time as possible. In today’s modern world where technology is so easy to use, and constantly there, it’s easy to spend time staring at a tablet, smartphone, or laptop when our children are vying for our attention, for example. Or we might let our own worries about finances, work, or relationships get in the way.
If that sounds familiar, you’re not alone. We all do it, and we all need to do it less. We need to be more present parents; here are some ways to get started.
Wake Up First
Waking up before the kids can be the best way to start the day and be more present for them. You don’t need to get out of bed necessarily; you could stay where you are, but take the time to meditate, or read, or plan the day, for example.
Or you could indeed get up and make yourself a cup of coffee and watch the sunrise, or simply sit peacefully before the rest of the household awakes.
This quiet alone time first thing in the morning can work wonders are re-setting your day and helping you to be calmer and more present right from the start. You won’t feel quite so flustered, or think that you need to be doing other things. You can simply be present, in the moment, and try to make that feeling last all day.
Parenting can be difficult, it can even feel overwhelming, and this, combined will all the other pressures of adult life, can mean that our mental health suffers, yet doesn’t take priority. Without your mental health, it’s almost impossible to really be there for your children, so if you feel you need help, contact professionals such as those at Inspire Malibu treatment center who will be able to assist. When your mind is relieved of the stress and pressures, and your problems are being dealt with, you’ll notice a marked difference in how well you are able to enjoy time with your children, and they will notice this positive change as well.
Put Your Phone Away
Social media can be a lot of fun, and it’s a good way to catch up with friends and family, or to learn about the news. Yet this kind of technology has a way of dragging us in, and what might have been just a minute of scrolling can easily become five minutes, ten, or even thirty or more. This will detach you from the real world, and the people who need you to be there with them.
If you are with your children, put your phone away. Many adults are addicted to their smartphones, and if you feel that that is the case for you, don’t just leave it on the side or in your pocket, but put it in an entirely separate room where you just can’t be looking at it every few moments. Concentrate on playing with your children, cooking with them, helping them with their homework, cheering them on at a game… social media will still be there when you look at it later on, and you really won’t have missed anything.