As parents, we strive to be the best role models that we can be for our kids. Part of being a good role model is introducing our children to healthy habits. The gradual steps we guide them towards to improve their health are critical to how well they care for themselves down the road. To ensure that your kids are building healthy habits, here are some healthy parenting suggestions to follow.
Explain Why Nutrition Matters
An easy way to jumpstart your kids’ nutrition is to find ways to keep them focused and entertained on being healthy. Kids are obsessed with all things sweet and delicious. Whether it’s candy, pizza, or ice cream, if it tastes good, that’s probably all they care about. You can start showing them why healthy eating and nutrition matter so much without compromising taste.
One way to help along with building healthy habits is by having them take kid’s vitamins. These nutrition-packed goodies come in a wide range of flavors to ensure that your kids will like the taste. They might even get a kick out of knowing that they did something healthy for themselves.
Do Outdoor Activities Together
If you want your children to build the habit of staying active, be a role model and show them how it’s done. Offer to play ball with them, buy them hiking boots and go on family hikes, or take walks together in the evening.
If they see that you enjoy living an active lifestyle, they will be more likely to follow through with similar habits as they get older. Kids mimic parent behavior, so the more you do to prioritize outdoor activities with your kids, the more likely your kids will be led in a healthy direction.
Practice Emotional Regulation
Although emotional regulation is not commonly taught in schools or at home, it totally should be. Often, kids grow up without a clear understanding of how to healthily regulate and express their emotions.
Suppose they are around others who display anger or love in inappropriate ways. In that case, they are more likely to accept invalid forms of emotional expression and behave in ways that cause imbalances and self-destruction in their lives.
Start practicing emotional regulation skills with your kids so they can learn how to tolerate painful emotions and handle stress effectively. You can use the DBT training manual as your guide as you walk through different modules with them.
Explain Why Balance Matters
When you’re not teaching your kids about nutrition, fitness, and emotional resiliency, make sure you remind them that balance is essential to living a happy life too! Tell them that eating sweets, taking time off from exercise, and having mental health days are all good things in moderation.
Encourage your kids to do their best and to not try to be the best all of the time. Explain that life is about balance and that taking time off is just as important as sticking to your goals!
For extra fun, you can have a Sunday fun day with your kids and maybe even make sundaes with them as a special treat! For a totally literal take on practicing balance, do some yoga together and really turn things upside down and right side up!
The Bottom Line
Instilling your kids with healthy habits requires your active participation as their parent. Model the behaviors and thinking patterns you would like to see in their development, and work towards these goals together. Your kids will copy everything you do, so make sure that your actions align with the suggestions above!
One thought on “How to Build Healthy Habits for Your Kids”
Nutrition is one of those aspects of life that should be instilled in children as early as possible. Setting a good example for them makes all the difference, too.