Our kids learn their behaviors by watching us. We can’t expect them to do something that we tell them to do but don’t do ourselves. Likewise if we are doing things we shouldn’t be – we shouldn’t be surprised if they pick up those same bad habits! What kinds of healthy examples – both physical and mental – can you set for your kids? Here are some I came up with – please add any more you can think of in the comments:
1) Don’t smoke – Smoking is one of the worst things you can do to your health. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. If you do already smoke – stop, you don’t want your kids picking up this bad habit.
2) Drink in moderation – If you drink alcohol, do it in moderation. Show them that it is possible to drink responsibly. Let someone else drive if you’ve drank too much.
3) Limit TV viewing – Try not to spend long hours sedentary and watching TV. Not only does it set a bad example of not living a more active life – but it also sends a message a being more passive in life by watching others do things on TV rather than actually doing things themselves.
4) No fast food – Don’t take them to fast food restaurants and don’t eat fast food yourself.
5) Prepare healthy meals – Cook foods for yourself and your kids with all food groups and especially vegetables.
6) Healthy snacks – Eat only healthy snacks like fruit and don’t even keep junk food around.
7) Exercise regularly – Create a regular exercise routine for yourself. Even if it is something simple like taking a walk every evening – make it a priority so they can see how important exercise is.
8 ) Keep balance – Try your best to keep a balance between your work and your family. This is important for your mental health. You don’t want to set an example of either working all the time or the opposite of not doing something constructive with your life.
9) Have regular health checkups – See your doctor, dentist and eye doctor at the recommended intervals.
10) Express your thoughts – Its not good for your mental health to hold things in or expressing them inappropriately – set a good example by talking out issues with your spouse or other adults in a rational and calm manner.
11) Get enough sleep – Sleep is important to stay healthy, set an example by getting the proper amount of sleep as much as possible.
12) Respect yourself – Show through example that you have good self-esteem – do some nice things for yourself sometimes or arrange for some ‘me’ time. Basically something to show that you are important too – kids need this to help develop their own healthy sense of self-esteem.
What else can you think of to add to this list? Please add it in the comments! Let’s see if we can make a good comprehensive list here to help each other out as parents!
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