Do you feel like your family has fallen into a rut? It’s as if one bad choice led to another and now you’re seriously concerned. Are you setting a bad example? Are your kids getting all the nutrients their growing bodies need?
We have all been there. It starts with cereal for dinner one night, and the next thing you know, the kids are sneaking Skittles before breakfast. Oh well, at least they’re quiet. But then you realize that you’ve strayed so far from where you were that you’re not even sure how to get back. How do you make them eat broccoli at this point?
If you’re currently in one of these ruts, know that they are common, especially among busy families. And you don’t have anything to be ashamed of. But now it’s time to turn this ship around.
- Autism and Transition: Why is transitioning so hard?
- The Challenge of Child Care: Nanny or No Nanny?
- How to Tell if Your Teenager is Over scheduled
Have a launch party
Whether you need a major or minor overhaul, it helps to have some motivation. This strategy is great for the parents, but it’s especially beneficial if your kids are elementary-school age or older.
Find a documentary or educational DVD about the types of changes you want to make. There are plenty of health-related documentaries on Netflix, so you can choose one that’s in line with your nutritional beliefs.
Watch it together and you’re more likely to get the entire family on board with change. Whenever you want someone to change what they’re doing, it helps to know why. If your kids are younger, try something like KFIT Health that includes a 2-week health and fitness plan for kids to follow.
Lead by example
Remember that you are leading this charge. That means it’s up to you to set the tone for this change. If you’re strict with making good choices for yourself, the rest of the family will be more likely to make good choices for themselves.
This means cutting out bad habits like smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol in excess. Alcohol can be especially problematic because it interferes with the body’s digestion. When you’re digesting alcohol, it’s difficult for your body to process other toxins, and this can have an impact on your health. Alcohol also changes your brain chemistry and can cause you to put on extra weight, especially around the midsection. Bottom line here is that it’s not part of a healthy lifestyle.
You don’t have to abstain completely, but you should cut back to a drink or two per week if possible. If you’re drinking a lot and have trouble cutting back, you may have a problem drinker. This can quickly lead to alcohol addiction, so it’s important that you start cutting back now. The kids are watching, and they’re likely to mimic your behavior when they’re older.
Get fit together
When you focus on fitness together, it’s kind of like having your own little support group. When one person is weak, the group can be strong.
Now isn’t the time to worry about regrets. But it’s the perfect time to come up with a new plan to improve your family’s lifestyle choices. After all, these choices are likely to be the ones your kids carry with them into adulthood.