As calendars get overloaded and time seems like it grows shorter and shorter, many parents are feeling a crunch in balancing their schedules with their parenting.
It is totally understandable. There are deadlines and commitments that need to be met, which leads to the tension of figuring out which other important tasks have to be set aside. Unfortunately, far too often, our children tend to get the short end of the deal.
So, how can we be better about being intentional about our parenting while maintaining our busy schedule?
I am far from perfect at this, but I have thought of five ideas that I am trying to implement as much as possible, that just might be helpful for the busy parent(s) trying to make sure their kids know they are loved.
That leads me to the first idea:
NEVER STOP TELLING YOUR KIDS YOU LOVE THEM!
Our kids need to know we love them. We might assume they know because we say it once or twice, but they need to hear it regularly. Tell them how special they are to you. Let them know you love them and you enjoy their presence. The love we share with them now, will help them express love to their kids in the future. I don’t ever want my children to grow up, trying to remember when their dad ever said “I love you”. I will not miss the opportunity to tell them.
POSTPONE WHAT’S IMPORTANT FOR WHAT’S URGENT
We all know deadlines and commitments are important. They need to be met and we cannot afford to miss them or we might face major consequences. However, when we show our kids that our work is more important than them, we will definitely face dyer consequences that will take a lot of mending in the future. Yes, we want to provide for the children and make a good life, but our relationship will last beyond a job. When we retire, we should want to have a healthy relationship with our kids, not a strained one. Their years, months, weeks, and days are urgent. They need our attention. Wait of them to go to bed to work. Try to finish what you have to finish before coming home. That might mean eating at your desk, skipping checking your Facebook at the office, or reading this blog when you’re in bed. Focus on the urgent connection with your kids and let them see how important they are to you.
PRACTICE YOUR SABBATH WELL
All of us need a break. God set it up that way. The Lord never designed us to be workaholics. He wants us to work and serve well, but He also wants us to rest well. When we rest, we show our kids we value God’s command. When we rest, we take advantage of time with our family. Our schedules should clear. Take time to go out somewhere or, if you choose to stay in, limit your phone use. Find away to enjoy a movie or games together. Weather permitting, spend some time outside. Teach your kids a new skill, learn something new together, and show them a healthy way to rest and find margin.
SET UP CONFERENCE CALLS
I know many parents who have office jobs that keep them late. This happens a lot during deadline crunch time. Take advantage of your breaks and schedule a conference call with your kids. Have them either join you on a Skype or FaceTime meeting if they are near a computer or smartphone with that capability. Your kids will feel important and, again, you emphasize their importance to you.
DON’T NEGLECT YOUR SPOUSE
Your children need to see you loving your spouse. Let them see, no matter how busy you are, your marriage is still takes priority. This demonstrates the fact that the relationship you have with your spouse directly correlates with the relationship with the children. When you laugh and spend time with your spouse, then share that same laughter and time with your kids, they will begin to see the connection and love it even more.The time you put into loving your spouse well will enhance your children’s understanding of loving their spouse well. They will see work never takes precedence over marriage and that is significant.
Again, I’m not perfect at these, but I am trying. I want my kids to know I have balance and, if the scale tips, they will outweigh my busyness.
May you find balance in your life. May you find balance in your parenting. May your kids see your hard work and love you even more for it.
Peace and blessings friends.
QUESTION: How do you find balance in your time for your children? How have you seen balance implemented in other families?