Around this time of year everyone is setting New Year Resolutions, have you? In my family we tended not to do this. Dad said it seemed to be setting ourselves up for failure so we avoided it altogether!
It seems Pops was on to something though because there are a LOT of depressing stats out there about how many of us fail in our resolutions by the end of January…oops!
I think the reason for this is because the format of resolutions is very negative. “I will stop….eating ice cream, yelling at my kids, staying up late (fill in the blank!)
It comes from a place of “beating ourselves up” and feeling poop about ourselves in general.
A quote I love that I first heard from the lovely Kate Northrup is “beating ourselves up only leaves bruises” and I think this is really true.
"Beating ourselves up only leaves bruises." - @Kate Northrup @FCPlaytherapy
While being mean to ourselves and forcing ourselves to do without may work in the short run, for more long term change we need to feel good about doing it!
So instead of “I will stop yelling at the kids” ...
Tweak it to the positive that you want more of. E.g. “ I will speak with more kindness and authority to the children.”
The focus changes to what you want more of “kindness & authority” rather than what you don’t want “yelling”. It’s doesn’t matter that you pre fix with "I want to stop.. "
If I tell you to NOT think about Chris Hemsworth’s abs on a beach with puppies, what are you doing? You’re thinking about it! You’re likely also picturing it and maybe even having an emotional reaction to it ( I know I am! 😉 )
Or you're wondering who is Chris Hemsworth? In which case google it (you’re welcome!) and then come right back!
Anyway, the point is that our non-conscious brain, the part of the brain that comes online first, picks up on key words so make sure you use positive ones!
Research has also shown that changing habits is most effective when we replace a habit so there you go! What are you going to replace for a happier 2018?
Now as for the goal that will make this year the best year for parenting ever… add more play into your daily life!
More specific goals are easier to achieve to so let’s make it more specific…
"I will play at least once a day for a happier, healthier and more connected family life!”
If you are very play deprived and over scheduled start small. Your goal could be to play at least once a week.
Make it happen!
- Set a recurring reminder on your phone to play!
- Put a post it note in your car, mirror or your office saying “how can I make this more playful?”
- Buy a toy for yourself! A figurine for your desk, some play dough, a colouring book! An easy go-to form of play for your self care.
If you want more ideas on how to add more playful parenting in your life, download my FREE ebook now called, "11 Playful parenting ideas to connect with your child today".
Here’s to a happy playful 2018!
Tell me in the comments, what are your goals for 2018? Do you want to play more?