Being Present Parents Is The Most Important Thing in Children's Life

Stress often makes us a bit detached in our day-to-day routine. However, kids learn a lot more from our actions than they do from our words, so always being somewhere else mentally is almost as bad as being somewhere else physically.

We’re all guilty of it from time to time, but there are ways that we can work on being more present.

HERE ARE 12 ESSENTIAL TIPS TO HELP YOU BE A MORE PRESENT PARENT.

1. PUT THE SCREEN DOWN
There are so many distractions in our daily lives, but few are more distracting than the computer that we keep in our pockets. There is always something to do on your phone, and I know that I have been guilty of paying attention to it when I should be paying attention to my kids. The most important thing you can do to be a present parent is to be in the moment, which means no screen surfing.

2. COMPLIMENT YOUR KIDS
Take the time out of your day to pay your children compliments about who they are. Not only does this help boost their confidence and self-esteem, it lets them know that you are paying attention enough to notice their accomplishments. Compliments don’t always have to be on physical or intellectual accomplishments either; you can just tell them you love them and are grateful to have them in your life.

3. MAKE TIME FOR SPECIAL TRIPS
It is so easy to get absorbed by life itself and forget to take time out to enjoy the simpler things. Kids are only kids for a short amount of time, so help them remember their childhood fondly. Take the time to make special trips to places like a zoo or even a park to enjoy some “in the moment” family time.

4. ASK THEM ABOUT THEIR DAY… AND LISTEN
One way we are often present yet absent at the same time is when we ask our kids a question and then think about other things as they speak. Be conscious of this! Ask them about their day and actively listen to what they have to say. Ask questions. Repeat what you heard to show them that you were listening.



5. MAKE RULES AND STICK TO THEM
What do house rules have to do with being a present parent? If you’re busy making dinner, for example, and your child is breaking the rules, it’s easy to ignore their behaviour and keep doing what you’re doing. Neither of you will be happy that you had to stop to enforce rules, but it’s better for both you and your child in the long run.

6. KEEP A JOURNAL
Reflecting on today can help you be a more present parent tomorrow, as well as appreciate the most “important” parts of the day. Keeping a journal is also a great way to vent about the day’s frustrations in a constructive way, to practice gratitude, and to plan for a more productive and more present tomorrow.

7. PRACTICE SELF CARE
Being a present parent is all about your kids, but to care for them, you need to care for yourself first. Caring for yourself and your babies at the same time doesn’t have to be challenging as long as you recognize the importance of taking care of yourself and make it a priority.

8. LET YOUR CHILDREN BE PART OF EVERYDAY TASKS
By allowing your kids to be part of everyday tasks, like cooking and organizing the house, you are engaging them physically while being in the moment with them. Have them help you prepare dinner or walk the dog. Most of these tasks give you ample time to talk and teach – and it sets good habits for the future!

9. WAKE UP BEFORE THEY DO
Waking up before your children has so many advantages. Though it’s wonderful to get that extra shut-eye! Being up before them sets an example, allows you to plan for the day, from breakfast to the day’s activities and to be alone with your thoughts for a bit before the day gets crazy. When you do wake them up, you will be more clear-headed and able to be present with them.

10. BE APPROACHABLE AND GIVE HONEST ANSWERS
This may seem obvious, but it’s not always as easy as it sounds. Ask yourself whether you’re always brushing your kids off. Make sure they know they can approach you with whatever questions they have and always give them honest and well-thought-out answers.

11. HUG IT OUT
There’s no better way to let a child know that you’re in the moment with them than through physical contact. A solid hug clearly tells them that you care, and you’re there.



12. DON’T BE TOO HARD ON YOURSELF
It’s hard sometimes to be in the moment with your kids when there are so many other aspects of life on your mind. Nobody is perfect, and every parent has regrets, but don’t be too hard on yourself. They aren’t kids forever, but tomorrow is another day to work on being more present.

Your kids are always going to love you, and you will always love them no matter what. Like anything else you do in life, the more you work at being a present parent, the easier it gets and the more natural it feels. One day you’ll look back and realize how great of a job you did and the amount of happiness you created, in their lives and in your own.