When you look back at a year of unrealised new year’s resolutions the reason is usually time, and if we are honest with ourselves, motivation. As parents, we can identify with this because all our time and energy is given to our children. We generally get to the point where our lives are so filled with work commitments and general ‘adulting’ that we feel guilty about using any spare time for ourselves and choose to spend it all with our children. We believe we are being selfish to do otherwise.
Every decision we make as parents is about our children. What if I told you that deciding to make your self-care time a priority was the opposite of being selfish, that it is a way to empower your child with the skills needed to thrive in the future?
As parents, we are our children’s most influential role models. How we live our lives gives them a window into how life works. We need to use this influence to teach them that time is our most precious asset and that it should be used to live a life of fullness, meeting the needs of all aspects of our lives, family, career, health, friendships, spirituality and passions.
So let’s reframe how we look at our new year’s resolutions and how we view quality time with our kids.
What if we looked at meeting our own goals as a way to teach our children about goal setting, patience, growth mindset, dedication, persistence and success? This would allow us to drop the guilt associated with self-care while allowing ourselves the time to fill our own cups, making time spent with our kids more meaningful and relaxed.
The best way to use new year’s resolutions as a teaching tool is to include the family in the entire process from setting the goals to celebrating your wins.
How to introduce goal setting and making yourself a priority to your family:
Make it fun. Create a template that everyone can decorate and write their goals on. Put some music on, sit together, connect and enjoy time together. (Download my free template here )
When deciding on goals remember to prioritise the journey not the end goal. The process needs to be something you will enjoy and look forward to doing.
Preparation is key. Create a timetable and space allowing each of you time to work on achieving your goals;
Teamwork makes the dream work. Regularly check in with your child on how each of you is progressing, you can discuss where you are succeeding and where you are having trouble and how you intend to grow past your hurdles and what help you may need;
Celebrate all wins, like really make a big deal about it, placing the most emphasis on the character traits that made success possible.
We are our children’s greatest role models and viewing our own goals in this light may just be the key to living our best lives while ensuring that they grow to reach their full potential. Once we let our children in on our goals, giving up can no longer be an option. How we handle our goals is how we will teach our children to handle theirs. What greater motivation can there be than that?