Parenting is proof that something can be rewarding and challenging at the same time. Not only are you responsible for providing the basic needs for your child, but you also have the task of raising them to become members of the community. It seems like a tall order, doesn’t it?
One important thing to remember, though, is that nobody has it figured out all the time, even parents themselves. However, the habits you form as early as your young adult life can help you become the parent your future child needs you to be. If you’re a parent or expecting to become one, then it’s time to check in with yourself and see if you have the good habits that can help you with parenting your future kid/s.
How Can Have Good Habits Translate to Becoming a Highly Productive Parent?
You Can Walk the Talk
Simply telling your kids what to do and when to do it is not enough. You can be more productive at parenting your child if you are able to model the behavior you expect from them. If your dinner rules include no gadgets at the table, then everyone, including the adults, shouldn’t be on their phones. Instead, the family will get to enjoy a meal and talk about their day. If you’ve built the habit of managing your time well so that work hours don’t creep into your time with your family, then rules such as this one will be easier to follow.
You Have the Energy to Keep Up
Good health and endurance cannot be achieved overnight. These can only be built through months or even years of good habits and consistency. You may ask, “How does staying healthy and having relatively high endurance help you become a productive parent?” If you know anything about newborns, then you’ll know that they have a tendency to require a lot of time and energy to take care of, and not all babies can sleep through the night. And if you’ve ever played with a toddler right after naptime, then you know you need the endurance to keep up with them, whether it’s playtime or study time. In general, becoming a parent will require a lot of physical and mental energy, so make sure you’ve built yours up so you can stay productive.
You Know How to Set Boundaries
One healthy habit that is often overlooked but can make a world of difference is knowing how to set and communicate boundaries. If you as an individual practice this healthy habit often and well, then you’ll have a better chance at teaching your children to do the same thing. This allows them to be independent and have agency over their physical and mental selves. Setting boundaries can start within the family, and when that foundation is set, you can teach your children how to set boundaries in their own circles. You can also teach them how to navigate situations when they feel like their boundaries have been crossed.
You’re Open to Listening and Learning
Even in a workplace setting, good leaders are those who know how to listen. They recognize that they, too, have a thing or two to learn from their team. It’s about welcoming new ideas to make the team better. This habit or practice can also be applied in the family unit. The world is rapidly changing. Rules that were once acceptable a few decades ago may not apply today. Recognizing that your kids have their own thoughts and perspectives and being open enough to listen to them are great habits of productive parents. In the end, this exchange of ideas allows for more open communication between all members of the family and helps make the family bond stronger.
Top Habits of Productive Parents
Productive people—including parents—have an endless list of good habits. But here are the top ones. If you have these habits down pat, then great! If not, don’t fret. Be kind to yourself and try to practice these on a daily basis until they form into solid habits.
1. Encourages Overall Well-Being
Overall well-being concerns the physical, mental, and emotional facets of a person. Parents who practice and encourage a healthy and active lifestyle can help their kids make lifestyle decisions for themselves. This doesn’t mean labeling food as bad or unhealthy, but putting importance on how they feel and the positive energy they get from their activities of choice. Try incorporating important nutrients like the best greens for kids or scheduling a fun day out swimming or playing catch. These are great ways to make staying healthy more of an enjoyable activity instead of a chore.
It’s also important to be mindful of the words that you use around your kids to make sure they’re not seeing their outer appearance as something to obsess about or treating exercise as punishment. Additionally, teaching your kids how to deal with stress and communicate their feelings in a healthy way is just as important. Parents who value their own mental well-being and have adopted practices that help protect them can become good models for their children. They are able to make the home a safe environment for talking about more serious issues.
2. Can Communicate Effectively
Sometimes, it can be easy to lash out or raise your voice, but such practices are not effective ways to communicate with your child (or any other person). Those who are able to communicate in a civil and calm manner are more likely to get their point across. Additionally, it’s also important to emphasize that communication is a two-way street. You, as a parent, should also be open to listening for communication lines to be considered truly open and effective.
3. Values Family Time
In a highly competitive world, it’s easy to get caught up. There will be times when parents will carry their work during family trips or even during family dinners. Of course, work is important to have the resources to provide the best for your family. But parents who have practiced the habit of managing their time well and prioritizing time for family will be able to truly enjoy parenthood.
4. Enforces Rules and Boundaries
Parents have the task of playing the “tough guy” when needed. But it all comes down to effective communication, which means not just saying, “Because I said so.” When you have practiced the habit of open communication, you’ll be able to enforce rules, but not without having to explain them to your kids first. This way, your kids will also learn how to set their own rules and boundaries in their own lives.
5. Staying Consistent
An all-encompassing quality of any habit is consistency. Habits are formed over time and require consistency. As a parent, you’ll be able to take this quality out of your bag of tricks for almost anything. From setting a morning routine with your kids so no one’s late to school or work to scheduling time for a family activity to strengthen your bond.
Not only does having good habits help you with making the daily hustle and bustle more manageable, it also helps make parenting a little bit easier. Additionally, you’ll have the opportunity to pass down or teach these good habits to your children. Remember, you won’t always be there by your kid’s side to coach them through every moment of their life. So, just as you were able to practice good and healthy habits throughout your life, you can teach your kids to practice good habits as well. It all starts with productive parenting and an effective behavior modeling approach.