New year, new beginnings, new opportunities, new challenges; indeed paves way for yet another beautiful chapter of our lives. Woohoo, we are already in the middle of the first month. The part of the year loved by some but dreaded by most, students and parents alike. It’s freezing cold outside but the temperature inside is soaring high waving into stressful days and sleepless nights. Last minute fix ups, trying to pull up the weak links and gearing up for the mammoth task ahead is the buzz everywhere.
We parents can certainly make this block a more comfortable and happier part by adopting these simple mantras in our daily lives.
1) Start & End the day on a positive note- Remember a loving smile can do wonders. However hard the day may have been, however, upset you might be, try to start and end the day with positive words and a big smile. Loving words and beautiful smiles spread positivity and happiness.
2) Children need unconditional love and reassurance- Give your child a big hug. This is the time when our children need us and our support the most. Show love and affection towards them. Children and adults alike, need constant love and reassurance. We as parents and mentors need to keep this in our mind to enable our children to sail through the stressful times.Tell them often that they are special and that you love them. Give them a tight hug and reassure them with your pep talks. Put motivational posters, quotes around your house and their study area.
3) Trust them – Trust goes a long way in defining a parent- child relationship. Children should know that their parents trust them. If they know that, then they would try to live up to their parent’s trust and the chances of him/ her wavering or faltering may go down.
4) Be the alarm clock, the reminder service they need – Don’t nag or spoon feed but keep reminding them of their goals. Do remind them of their dreams and the journey ahead. With so many distractions around, children tend to get carried away and forget about their destination. You as a parent need to be that alarm clock they need now. Be subtle but consistent in your efforts.
5) Help them organise themselves well- The syllabus, date sheet, important points, dates, formulas, tables, should be handy with them. Make sure they have it organised well be it in their files, laptop or on the pinup board. They work as handy, concise ready reference sheets and are helpful, especially for that last minute brush up . Give them tips on how they can make more effective and efficient notes.
6) Limit usage of Social media- Social media can have both good and bad influence. It can be distracting and put the child under undue peer pressure. Total abstinence may not be practically possible but limiting usage hours can certainly help. Sit with your child, explain the good & bad and fix the time for it.
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7) Eating healthy – Help them eat food rich in vitamins and minerals. Focus more on pulses, milk, fruits & vegetables. Do go in for that occasional chocolate and cake treats. But don’t overindulge as they add plain calories and make the child feel lethargic too. Want cakes & cookies? Why not go in for healthier options like oat & raisin muffins, carrot cakes, banana bread, walnut brownies with palm sugar, Wheat pasta, dips with salad to name a few. These are all healthy foods and easy to cook too. Children should not take more than 2 cups of coffee or tea as large amounts can be bad for the stomach lining. Drinking water immediately before having any caffeinated drink like tea or coffee prevents acidity and heart burning. Try flavoured milkshakes instead. Haldi milk, especially at night, does wonders to our immunity. Make this a part of your child’s daily routine.Avoid giving outside food as staying away from infections is what we need now.
8) Sleeping & exercising well- Don’t compromise on your child’s sleep. Try having a fixed waking and sleeping schedule for your child. At least 8-9
hours of sleep is a must for all of us. Remember only a rested mind can think logically and focus well. A 20-minute power nap in the afternoon is good for health at any age. This gives our brain the needed break and refreshes our body too. Like food & rest, exercise too plays an important role in our lives. Just 10 minutes of walk, yoga or any moderate exercise can release good hormones in our body. This will sharpen the mind, tone up the body and above all heighten our self-esteem. I’m sure no one wants to add up those extra kilos while burning the midnight oil.
9) Remember every child is unique-Don’t compare and don’t let your child too get into that habit of comparing them with others. Tell them they are unique and all have different paths to tread. They should give their best to whatever they do and just work on bettering themselves. Feeling superior or inferior to anyone leads nowhere. So stay focused and grounded.
10) Life is beautiful – The most important part is to tell them how beautiful life is. They should live it with sincerity, keep up the faith and don’t let the stumbling blocks lower their spirits and pull them down. Life is precious and it’s important to remember that in life no one ever loses. We either win or we gain experience.
We all love our children and we can certainly bring out the best in them.Be the best friend your child needs- This is the time when the child needs a friend, a confidante. Care for them, tell them that they are loved, they are special, build their confidence and make them sail through this important journey of their lives beautifully.
(The author is a former banker, writer and a home maker)