How To Create Healthy Habits For Your Children
As a parent, we aim to teach our children right from wrong, the important lessons of taking care of our minds, bodies, and spirit as well as advice we wish we would have had as children. One of the things I strive to really work on with my own children is the benefits of self-care. As seen with my own little ones, children benefit greatly from consistent and deliberate self-care activities. Even if they may not upset or stressed out about something, teaching them how to take care of themselves can help ensure that they have the skills to manage future issues in a healthy and effective manner. A few self-care activities that I continuously work on with my children not only help them to cultivate these good habits but it also keeps their mind and body to be at it’s best from now and years to come. They don’t always have to be expensive, time-consuming or elaborate when working on self-care activities. It may seem like a chore at first and a lot of effort at first but over time it actually becomes a habit. So, how do we start to create healthy habits for our children?
- Talk to Them About Their Bodies – An essential aspect of self-care is taking care of our physical health. When it comes to sharing this with our kids and maintaining a healthy fit lifestyle there a lot of great ways to encourage these habits. You can exercise together such as playing basketball at the park or playing catch in your backyard. Not all physical activities have to be extremely physical but even a bit of way to help ease their mind when they are feeling stressed or angry. I always tell my children if they are feeling this way to take a deep breath like meditating or go on a long walk to help clear their mind. My daughter loves to stretch or do yoga to help calm herself down before a big test. These are ways to help them not only stay in shape but keep a regular routine of knowing that it keeps them fit and balanced when challenges come their way. There may be times where your child is extremely excited about a sport but you aren’t sure how to help- why not try to volunteer as a coach or even cheer them on! By seeing that you are enjoying being involved in their healthy habits, you’re creating a lifelong memory for them.
- Visiting Their Doctors – I know many people who are always nervous to go to the doctor or the dentist but I want to share this healthy habit with my children that the doctors are there to help us to create a better relationship for them. Children know it’s important to get their physical checkup each year for school and also when they aren’t feeling good. It’s also important that the doctor has a good relationship and is comfortable sharing information with us to keep everyone feeling their best. A way that they manage all of our children’s allergies, doctor visits and medicines in by having a medical transcriptionist to help transcribe these notes and important information in their file. A friend of mine shared she felt extremely excited to be able to work in the medical field and keeping these charts accurate, up to date and accessible for doctors and physicians because she was trained at iMedX. This company goes above and beyond helping their employees working in hospitals, offices or even from home to create a sense of trust, dedication and worth for everyone that enters their program. Sharing the importance of your children knowing what their allergies are, the medication that they take, and their comfort level of keeping up to date with their chart is critical when keeping their health up to par.
- Make It Fun -There are always distractions from the daily stressors of life and laughter actually is one to help lower your stress levels. Enjoy this time with your children. Play a fun game together, bake something in the kitchen you’ve been dying to all try or even attempt to tackle that puzzle that’s been in the closet for the last few months. When you have fun together, allow yourself to be fully present by focusing on that particular activity and experience what you are sharing with your child. Having fun is a wonderful way to connect and keep discovering what types of activities your child really does enjoy to help them care for themselves later in life.
- Volunteer – When you help others, your emotions and behaviors change and it can help provide long-term health benefits. Basically, it feels good to do good for someone else and it teaches your children the value of kindness as an important life lesson. Help out at a local charity or ask if your children have any clothes that they want to donate to a local shelter. If your kids are enjoying spending their time and energy helping others, remember that. It also helps to teach them gratitude and being thankful for what they have at home.
- Trying New Things– This can be from anything like trying a new food or attempting a new workout move. Whatever it is, don’t be afraid of the new! Work on it together and share how the excitement of what’s to come is a good thing. Practice makes perfect whatever the chore may be but just putting your first step forward is a goal. We always try to make the same food for our children as ourselves so they can try new things. It doesn’t have to be a crazy meal but even introducing new foods and sharing an enjoyment of preparing the food together and watching it turn into something delicious can be inspiring for children. Make sure you are sharing a healthy relationship for food as well. Fill the fridge with snacks and let them know that rewards are treats after they eat what helps nourish their body.
Hopefully, these are simple health habits for you to encourage your own children, friends or family members! It’s great to start now and keep encouraging for the next few days, weeks or months. In truth, it’s never too late to start a healthy habit!