Happy and healthy kids make a happy life for themselves and their parents as well. It is every parent’s goal to raise kids that are happy and healthy. Thus, when the kids turn out to be happy and healthy it feels good for the parents. In addition, happy kids are positive and optimistic. For this reason, they are not affected by emotional stress that often leads to other problems. What’s even better is that happy kids turn out to be well-rounded individuals who go on to achieve success in life.
However, raising kids that are happy isn’t always easy. In my career as a child psychologist, I have seen parents struggle so much in this area. But raising happy kids isn’t a complicated affair with the right strategies. Here are 5 tips that work so well for most parents.
1. Be happy yourself
The first step in raising happy kids is ensuring that you are happy yourself. Your happiness affects how you parent your kids. When you are happy, it reflects in your parenting, which goes a long way in influencing how your children react to what is happening in their lives. Kids are also very good at internalizing what they see in their parents. If you are frustrated in your job or your marriage is stressful, it is highly likely to show. Your kids will see your frustration when you come home from work. Don’t think that they don’t notice how much you struggle to fight for your marriage. These things affect them negatively especially on how they interact with other people. So, if you are keeping the job and the marriage for the sake of your children, you are doing more harm than good to their happiness.
2. Allow more playtime
I’ve seen parents dread playtime for the mess that results afterward. However, that mess is worth it compared to the benefits that come when kids play, especially at a young age. For starters, playing provides kids with a way of expressing themselves. It also gives them a chance to explore and learn new things, which is very critical in enhancing creativity in them. Play also helps in improving their health by keeping kids physically fit and active. To encourage your children to play more, buy them different toys. You can also plan play dates with their friends or take them to a park.
3. Encourage healthy habits
Healthy kids make happy kids. It would be very difficult for a child to be happy when he or she is always in and out of hospitals or is struggling with mental issues. For this reason, encourage your kids to live healthy by promoting healthy habits at home. You can do so by ensuring that they eat healthy foods and stay hydrated. You can supplement their nutrients intake with vitamins such as magnesium gummies for kids to ensure that they have a daily dose of all nutrients. In addition, ensure that they are getting enough rest and sleep as well as building healthy relationships that foster a healthy mind.
4. Praise efforts not an achievement
In a world that is more result-driven, it is easy for parents to focus more on kids’ achievement. Unfortunately, this puts a lot of pressure on the kids to perform and be perfect. Consequently, it makes kids get depressed and anxious. Most kids who suffer this even try to use vices to help them cope with the pressure. In addition, children who are always praised for their achievements often tend to play it safe. They will choose an easier test and task to limit the chances of failure. On the other hand, praising kids for their efforts encourages hard work. Such kids turn out to be happier and more self-driven.
5. Make memories
If you take time to reflect on your childhood, the memories that come to mind first are the times that you were happy. When it comes to your kids, strive to create memories that spark positive emotions as they take longer to fade. Travel together, play together, cook together and do much more with your kids. Besides making them happy, you are fostering good behaviors that are critical even in their later years. In addition, kids feel safe and secure when their relationship with you is healthy.
Most parents consider showering their kids with material things as a way of making them happy. However, material things take a small percentage in making kids happy. Focus on things that matter such as those listed above to foster happiness for your kids. In addition, don’t be so obsessed with getting it right all the time. It is impossible to have your kids happy all the time. The secret is to be consistent in your efforts.