INCULCATE GOOD HABITS IN KIDS
There are naughty kids then there are kids who are naughty but at such tender age also know their limits. Isn’t it amazing how kids as young as 2 year olds can behave responsibly!! And true that every mother wishes for a kid like that.
Developing healthy habits early in a child’s life will bring lifelong benefits. As parents, we can encourage our children to learn good habits that may include good social skills, good manners and also help them evaluate some of their food choices and physical activity habits. It is very important to be patient as developing habit (especially the good one) takes time. Repeating a behaviour or action on a daily basis will help your child inculcate it more promptly.
Here are some tips and guidelines to get you started.
Set good examples yourselves: This is one of the best ways to inculcate good habits as your child will learn by watching your behaviour. Hence be at your best so that your child imbibes the best.
Manners: Encourage use of phrases like Thank You, Welcome, Sorry, May I? , excuse me. These will slowly become part of their lifestyle.
Physical activities: Spending lot of time indoors watching television is the main reason for chronic diseases in kids these days. As parents it is our responsibility to ensure our young ones are involved in physical activities. You could start with simple activities like asking them to help you around at home, helping you in gardening, etc. As they grow encourage your kid to choose activities they enjoy like swimming, cycling, skating or any other outdoor games.
Encourage family bonding: This factor is very important for a growing child. Bonding helps a child gain confidence, feels secure and when the kid receives the attention they need they feel respected and heard. This will eventually teach them how to respect and listen to others opinion. Hence fix a time in your busy schedule and ensure the whole family meets at this designated time. Bonding will also help you stay involved in your child’s life. Make sure you are updated about how their day was, the kind of friends they have, and how they are doing at school. It is a great idea to have a short chat with your children after they come back home from school – it will also keep you updated of your children’s emotional status.
Be tolerant but set strong ground rules: Make a routine and timetable for your kid. Set fix time for study, play, homework and screen time. Do stay flexible when need be. Provide adequate time for play as play helps in both physical and mental development.
A Healthy Diet: This is the most important aspect. Adopting healthy diet habits at an early age will bring a change in behaviour for a lifetime. Involving your kids in grocery shopping and preparation, serving smaller portions and decorate healthy food in funky attractive ways will help you make your child eat good studs. Also ensure you keep fruits handy while travelling so that your kids’ hunger pangs can be taken care of in a healthy way. Also, family dinners are an excellent way to inculcate the habit of healthy eating in your children. If the family sits together for dinner, your children are less likely to consume unhealthy foods and will be more in touch with the family.
Reward Your Child: Reward your children for their good behaviour. This will keep them motivated and will help them maintain their best behaviour at all times. Rewards should not be materialistic things instead replace these with hugs, appreciation, etc.
Reading Books: Reading out stories to your child from a book makes a significant difference. Good literature has an effective way of inspiring children to behave in a correct manner, to follow a code of discipline, and to maintain a positive outlook in life. A habit of reading will be great in the long run for your child’s intellect as well.
Your Expectations should be realistic: Children should be encouraged to learn from their mistakes. Setting realistic goals and limits are key to adopting any new behaviour. As parents you have to realize that all children learn at their own pace.
Everyone likes to be praised and appreciated for a job well done. Children are no different. They do not like to hear what they cannot do, so tell them what they can do instead. Make small things fun and positive. Celebrate successes and help children develop a positive self-image in the process.