Making Parenting a Priority
Parents are well aware of their responsibilities and obligations to their children, but sometimes life can get in the way. You get really busy at work, or have to clean the house, or get caught up in any number of other things. It happens. But sometimes, you need to put everything aside in the interest of parenting—and even though it can be hard, you’ll find that it’s worth it.
Set “work-free” times when everyone puts down their schoolwork, housework, office work, and other tasks and goes for a walk, plays outside, or does some other activity together.
If what you’re doing isn’t absolutely critical, be willing to put it down when your children want to play or talk—it lets your kids know they’re important, and it will give you a needed break from working.
Pencil them in! During particularly busy times at work, set aside days on the family calendar when everyone knows you will have time together. Plan for something enjoyable that everyone can look forward to.
Don’t forget your partner! Set time aside to spend with your parenting partner, a relative, or a friend—having a strong connection with members of your parenting network can help you get through the difficult times parenting may bring.
Remember: older kids, even if they don’t need your supervision as much as they used to, still need to spend time with you. Make time to just hang out with them on a regular basis.
- The Mayo Clinic’s article on work-life balance provides many great suggestions for ways to maintain a balance.
All parents struggle sometimes to balance the priorities in their lives, especially if their jobs are very demanding. But sometimes, no matter how important everything else feels, you have to take a step back and realize that parenting your child is more important than cleaning the house or getting some extra work done.