When it comes to New Years Resolutions, another highly popular one is to Spend More Time with Family and Friends.
It might seem like a pretty simple thing to do, however, between technology and busy schedules, many of us are missing out on our own lives. It is never intentional, but it does happen.
This is a resolution that will require much dedication and hard work on your part. It is going to mean making a change to your lifestyle. As we all know, anything worth having is seldom easy. However, the rewards you will receive in return will be truly worth it.
Schedule it. If you think about it, you schedule many other things in your life, so why not friends and family time. The things that matter such as doctor’s visits, games and work commitments are all on your schedule. Why isn’t time with your family and friends?
It may take time to get use to doing this, but find that day/time of the week when you want to really focus on family and/or friends. Make sure it is a time when you know that other obligations will not force you to pass or take away from this time.
Things to add to your schedule might include:
- Girls’ night out with friends.
- Family game night.
- Dinner and a movie with other couples.
- Date night with your spouse or partner.
The idea is to make sure you show that these people are a priority by adding them into your schedule. It might be difficult at first, but once you start to do this, you will realize how much you’ve missed this and will want to make more and more time to spend with the special people in your life.
Make dinner time family time (without electronics). Even if you have practices, games and other things going on in the evening, try to find one or two nights a week when you can sit down as a family at the dinner table.
This is the perfect way to get everyone involved while prepping dinner. It gives you time to talk – without any distractions. It helps kids learn how to cook and might be the perfect time to talk about important things in their lives.
When you are at the table, make sure that you do not allow any electronics. This means the television should be turned off. The tablets and phones should be in the other room (to avoid the temptation of looking). Have actual conversations with your kids about school and friends. If you aren’t sure how to get them to actually talk to you, check out this post on How to Ask Your Kids About Their Day.
Put your kids first. It is easy to be in the middle of reading an e-mail or checking Facebook when your kids come up and ask to play a game or want to do something with you. Instead of saying “in a minute”, stop what you are doing and give them 100% of your attention.
Of course, there are times when you must finish what you are doing and your kids need to learn how to wait. However, if you really think about it, I bet that at least 75% of the time, you can stop and actually talk with them.
Your kids need to know that they matter more than your device or work. By giving them your undivided attention, that is exactly what you are doing. You are saying “You are important to me.”
Show love and affection daily. I honestly couldn’t imagine a day where my kids did not give me hugs and kisses. It is just part of who they are and what they’ve accustomed to. However, I also make sure I show more affection by sitting down and talking with them and listening to them.
When my son wants to tell me the same story for the 10th time, I listen as intently as I did the first time he told me. Or, when my youngest daughter just wants to sit beside me and watch her video, she is close and getting the affection she needs.
Just as with adults, children need attention and affection. In fact, they usually need it even more. Show your love to them daily – even if it is in the smallest way.
Is this your New Year’s resolution too? What changes are you making to your life to ensure that you spend more time with family in friends in 2016?