Every parent wishes he or she could be “perfect.” Often as parents we are so focused on what we wish we could do better, that we forget to make the most of the moments we share with our kids. I don’t know if becoming a mom makes me a parenting “expert”, but I can share a few tips that have helped me enjoy parenting a lot more.
Stop focusing on being “perfect” and focus instead on how you can be happy and fulfilled as a parent. What is it that you love about parenting? Make sure to make time for those things, whether it’s reading a story with your child or making a game out of putting away the toys. Even mundane tasks can be an opportunity to learn, share, and have fun with your kids. Tasks take longer with your 2-year-old “helping,” but these little moments can be tremendous opportunities for quality time with your kids that will help build their self-esteem and will put a smile on your face.
Don’t be afraid to make a fool of yourself.
Have fun with your kids for at least a few minutes each day. It’s the little things that count, and even sharing a few minutes of fun time can make you feel like a million bucks. It can be hard to drop what you are doing and put important tasks on hold, but focusing on your children and seeing the world from their perspective will make for some great memories.
Let go of the guilt. It’s so hard to enjoy parenting if you feel guilty all the time. Maybe you feel guilty because you work, and you might not get to spend as much time with your kids as you would like. Perhaps you feel guilty when you hire a sitter to have a mom’s night out. Yet guilt is an unwelcome intruder that can wreak havoc on your personal time with your family. Let it go. Whether you work out of economic necessity or personal fulfillment, it’s an important part of your life, and so is personal time. It makes you, “you,” and ultimately maintaining a balance can make you a better parent!
Reward yourself and make time for you. It’s important for you to have moments when you can relax, reflect, and enjoy yourself away from your kids and the pressures of daily life. This is time to rejuvenate. You might even find that you miss your kids while you’re away from them having this personal time! Afterwards you’ll have a fresh well of patience and appreciate your time with your kids that much more.