We may not have a crystal ball to portray a lovely vision of the future. Still, parents can do a few simple things to ensure a happier 2022 for their families, despite the uncertainties. Make it a new year’s resolution to put these suggestions first.
1. Take care of yourself first.
Parents must first take after themselves before they can look after the delight of their family as a whole. Change, grief, and mountains of stress have characterized the past two years. It should like-wise come as no surprise that our children are concerned when their parents or caregivers are concerned.
Therapy, more alone time, or significant opportunities to connect with our inner selves may be required. According to Jessica Zimmerman, an LMHC and Approved EMDR Consultant who has spent 20 years working with adolescents and families, the pandemic is a “global shared trauma” whose impacts on mental health are still being felt.
“Looking ahead to 2022, I believe parents should begin with themselves,” Zimmerman says.
2. Allow the kids to have an actual snow day.
My mother and I lived in a house on a tiny college campus when I was younger. As the snow piled up, campus police officers would sometimes block off sections of the uphill main roadway so that the neighboring youngsters could sledge. Those were the days that defined what it meant to have a snow day as a kid in my imagination.
There’s no doubting that remote learning is a valuable tool for schools. Still, snow day memories should be a shared universal experience for every child who lives in an area where it snows. Allow them to take the day off because they have earned it.
3. Make Quality Family Time a Priority
Put your phones, iPads, and tablets away, dust off your board games, and find ways to spend meaningful time with your family purposefully. Maybe it means setting aside some time to eat dinner at the table a few times a week. Alternatively, you may set aside one night a week for a family movie. Whatever it is, make sure you’re present in both your bodily and mental capacities.
4. Contribute to Your Community
Giving to others has been proved in studies to improve a person’s physical and mental health. Not to add, there’s never been a better time to provide a helping hand than now, when the needs of those around us are abundant. Volunteer at a soup kitchen in your neighborhood, donate resources to local schools, buy flowers for a nursing home, or leave handmade cookies in your neighbor’s doorway.
5. Encourage your children to use their voices.
Even in the most ordinary circumstances, children are influenced by adult decisions. Now, the world has turned completely around, leaving youngsters with far less influence over their daily lives than before.
The scale of this tension, according to Zimmerman, could lead to an “increase in anxiety, despair, substance addiction, and overall stress on medical and physical well-being.” We can’t afford to let our children’s legitimate feelings be hampered in any way.
If we want our families to be happy in 2022, we must teach our children that their voices, thoughts, and feelings are just as important as ours. We may be powerless in the face of the pandemic, but we do have control over how we react to it, and we can think that the path to overall happiness begins at home.