It's easy to live our lives in overdrive… constantly focusing on the next holiday, next birthday, next vacation. Often, it's the time between big events that parent-child relationships are nurtured and memories made.
Think about the last time you slowed down to:
- Offer your child undivided attention?
- Express gratitude in your day?
- Point out positive behavior?
"If our goal is to create happy and healthy children who become happy, healthy adults, we don't have to wait until they turn 18," says Jeff Reiland, Gundersen child and family therapist. "We can start today, and every day, by celebrating one special moment that we will keep in our memory for them.
Here's one way to start:
At the end of each day, as you are tucking your child into bed, share something with them that they can cherish.
"The best part of my day with you was when you…."
Find a moment that made you smile, made you laugh or filled you with pride. Look for some action that the child engaged in that demonstrated they are learning to be a good friend, a good helper, a good person. Even if you had a bad day, or if parenting that day was a struggle, try to find something that you can celebrate with your child.
Every day, you have opportunities to shape the future of your kids through simple day-to-day moments that you share with them. Don't let those day-to-day moments slip away.
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