Family resolutions can help to unify your home and teach kids the value of goal-setting. You don’t have to do anything too radical to see those positive effects, either.
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Here’s a list of five simple but worthwhile resolutions you can start with your family this year.
Every family can relate: we’re spending more time behind phones and tablets and less time actually interacting with each other in person. And it’s not just kids—adults are guilty, too.
In 2016, limit the time your family spends on devices. Don’t frame this as a punishment but rather as a way you can enjoy each other’s company. Ideas might include banning phones at the table during mealtimes, establishing regular, scheduled breaks from devices or creating screen-free zones throughout the house.
We’ve all heard the benefits of spending more time outside. Outdoor time helps children grow stronger, stretch their creativity, decrease aggression, sleep better and boost their mental health.
Make 2016 the year you focus on getting your whole family outside regularly. If you want to shake up the usual outdoor activities—hiking, swimming, playing at the park—there are plenty of lists of outdoor fun you can experience with your children. You can even start a new outdoor family hobby like ultimate frisbee or biking.
Make a family commitment to help the planet in 2016. Teach your kids that you want to keep the earth beautiful and healthy for their benefit, and help them understand how to continue preserving the planet for their own kids to enjoy.
Start small—use reusable containers instead of juice boxes in lunches, and start cleaning with natural vinegar-based solutions instead of chemical-based supplies. Larger efforts might include using less water or driving less often.
Too often we rely on big vacations to create family memories together.
To avoid that scenario, make a family bucket list of things you would like to do in the area. These can be as simple as a walk downtown for ice cream or as elaborate as a daytrip to a nearby theme park. The goal is to take more mini adventures as a family. By planning downtime, you’ll eliminate cabin fever in small children. And you may even get to schedule in some quality time with your busy older children.
To combat the chaos of daily life, plan regular, 15-minute weekly meetings to touch base with each other. These meetings can be great opportunities to plan future family activities. Also consider discussing everyone’s high and low points of the week to get an idea of what is affecting your children. Address any issues plaguing your family, too, like an ongoing fight between the kids or a contentious family situation that has not yet been resolved.