By Keri Christensen L.I.S.W.
Parenting has always been a difficult task but has become even more difficult in our fast-paced society. Many times parents feel like a taxi, running their children from activity to activity. With hectic work schedules and many parents working extra hours in an attempt to prove their worth in a suffering economy, families often suffer. Routines can be a great way to provide structure to a busy family and help parents to feel more in control rather than feel as if they are rushing from one thing to the next. Morning routines can be a great way to start the day and night routines can close out a day with adding preparation for the day to come.
Routines that include spending tim e together are one of the best ways to help relationships grow. Families can spend time together in many different ways. Going out to eat, attending church together, family game night, and going on family outings are all great ways for quality time together.
One of the simplest ways to spend time as a family is to eat dinner together. It’s easy to say, “We’re just too busy”, but as parents, we should never be too busy for our families. Studies show that eating together as a family increases a child’s self-esteem and cuts back on the chance of a child having an eating disorder by teaching healthy eating habits and allowing parents time to connect with their children on a regular basis. Connecting is done much easier when the T.V. is turned off!!! When families eat together with the T.V. on, they often miss the connection they could have had, and according to researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, television watching is linked together with the increasing obesity rates in children.
So turn off the T.V. and have dinner with your family tonight!