Spending Quality Time with Your Children

Posted on April 28, 2016

If you are like the bulk of parents, finding time to spend with your children can be very challenging.  Trying to find the time between work schedules, school, homework, sports, extra-curricular activities, and other such commitments can be an organizational nightmare!!!   If this sounds like your family, don’t worry, you are certainly not alone!!   Here are just a few tips to help get you started.

  • Unplug!   Yes, that’s right, unplug.  It is amazing how much time families “waste” by sitting in front of a TV screen, laptop, tablet, smart phone, etc.  Those are precious moments that can be used to build a stronger bond with your children as an alternative to everyone in your household doing their own thing on their own screen. Try it! Start with just one hour an evening a few nights a week and spend that time doing something as a family.  The sky is the limit on what you decide to do instead of being plugged in.  Some examples are; make dinner together, play a board game, go for a walk, play outside, work on a home project together.  It does not matter what you do, the important ingredient is that you are actively connecting with each other.
  • Don’t overbook.   I know this sounds basic but let’s face it busy families tend to do this a lot.   Take some time to reasonably look at all commitments before making new ones.  Does Johnny really need to play three different sports at the same time?  Does Jenny really need to be involved with five different extra-curricular activities at the same time?  As a parent, how often do you feel like an unpaid taxi driver?  If these activities start to consume almost every afternoon and evening as well as weekends it is time to re-evaluate those obligations.  Yes, being involved with these activities is a very positive enterprise, however; spreading you and your family too thin will have just the opposite result.  Learn when to say enough.   Both parents and children need relaxation. If your family schedule does not allow for such relaxation it is time to make a change.
  • Make dinner time family time.  Strive to have a family dinner together around the kitchen or dining room table as often as possible.   During these times the TV and other electronic devices should be turned off to provide time for the family to actively connect with one another and talk about their day.  This is also a good time to discuss family plans and other family business.  Parents who engage this time to connect with their children confirm having a much greater relationship with them.

Start with these three tips and see for yourself what positive changes begin to occur between you and your children.  Don’t wait until “things slow down a bit” in order to start.  Now is an excellent time to put these tips into action.  As parents we only have a short time before our children grow up and move on with their own lives.   Do you really want to waste any more of that precious time?

Written by:  James Vastag MA. LMFT

James Vastag is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist with Groff & Associates Professional Counseling.  His passion is to help couples and families navigate life’s rough waters by helping them learn how to meet their emotional, physical, and spiritual needs in a positive and healthy manner.  James may be contacted at:  james@groffandassociates.com, orwww.jamesvastag.com or (317) 474-6448 Ext. 107.

 

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NzE6Imh0dHA6Ly9ncm9mZmFuZGFzc29jaWF0ZXMuY29tL3dwLWNvbnRlbnQvd29vX3VwbG9hZHMvMy1ncm9mZl9oZWFkZXIucG5nIjt9PC9saT48L3VsPg==