17 August 2018

11 Things Your Child Needs For a Happy and Positive Beginning In Life

You know that it’s not easy being a parent. You need to juggle your work life, the home, and your ever-dwindling social life. And what’s more, those things don’t have all that much to do with parenting; you’re just keeping up with the bare minimum! But of course, parenting is about much more than just putting food on the table. You also need to ensure you’re doing your best to give your son or daughter the best possible start in life. But how do you do this? We take a look at some useful tips below. 

11 Things Your Child Needs For a Happy and Positive Beginning In Life

A Loving Home

It’ll hopefully come as no surprise that children need a safe, loving space in which to grow. If you bring the love, you’ll see them jump from one small accomplishment to the next. Children who grow up in homes where love is thin on the ground develop a whole host of issues that stick with them throughout their life. So a happy, loving home is essential - children can manage without the latest computers and things, but they can’t manage without warm and positive emotions. 

Time in the Outdoors

There was a time, not so long ago, when parents were wrapping their children up in cotton wool. They thought that the outdoors was a cold and dangerous place. This is not the case! For starters, the world is safer than it’s ever been (people seem to incorrectly believe the opposite is true). Time spent in the outdoors, and especially in nature, is critical for a child’s development. It benefits them in ways that even scientists don’t fully understand; they just know that it’s necessary. In any case, it’s where humans belong. Get them outdoors early, and they’ll always relish what nature gives to them. 

Freedom To Be Themselves

The world is full of rules. You know that, and your child will come to realize it when they get older. But they don’t need to live under the shadow of ALL the rules at an early age. Let them be free to find their own way in the world - it’ll be a good buffer to the world when they’re older, when it’s the people who can think a little differently from the others who are most valued. Plus, you only get to be a child once. Let them enjoy it. 

A Confident Attitude

Confidence is a brittle thing, isn’t it? Enough adults have problems maintaining a confident attitude. Fortunately, it’s slightly easier to give a child a confident outlook on life. They’re not subjected to the same pressures that we adults are subjected to! Of course, there’s such a thing as a child being TOO confident, so it’s important to get the balance right. Give them praise where it’s due, criticism (constructive) when its merited, and don’t let them ever think that they don’t matter. It’ll help them be secure in themselves. 

Help When It’s Needed

Everyone knows that adults have issues that can knock their confidence. Well, the same applies to children. And their issues don’t just affect their confidence; they can affect the quality of their beginnings in life. If they’re having trouble talking, for example, then they may find they’re falling behind their friends when it comes to development. The good news is that whatever issues they’re suffering from, there will be help available. If they’re not talking as they should be, then you can always search for ‘speech therapists near me,’ and work with an expert. There’s no reason for your child to struggle with an issue on their own when there’s help available. 

Teammates and Friends

No-one goes through life on their own. People who think they’ve built a successful life all on their own are usually wrong. Plenty of people will have helped them along the way! It’s best to learn this early. There’s normally a noticeable difference in attitude to teamwork between people who played team sports as a child and those who didn’t. As such, one of the best gifts you can give your son or daughter is to enrol them in a team sport. It doesn’t matter so much what the sport is, so long as it involves everyone pulling together for a common cause. It’s an excellent attribute that’ll serve them well in life. 

A Positive Role Model

Children pick up much more from their adults than parents realize, or in some cases, want. It’s not enough just to tell your child the right way to conduct themselves; you need to show them, too. Most communication is nonverbal, after all. The best way to ensure your child grows up to be the best version of themselves is to be the best version of yourself! If you’re letting your bad habits creep in when you’re around your child, you can be too disappointed or surprised if they pick them up too. It’s worthwhile looking at ways to improve yourself. In so doing, you’ll be improving your children. 

11 Things Your Child Needs For a Happy and Positive Beginning In Life

The Essentials in Life

Some of the most important things in life, for children at least, are barely mentioned when it comes to understanding what they need. They’re just assumed to be self-evident, so they’re not worth mentioning. Take consistency. Experts have shown that it’s one of the most important aspects of a child’s development. Without it, children are much less likely to take on board the messages and lessons of their parents. So develop a routine, whatever it is. So long as your child knows what to expect - and it’s good - then they’ll be on the right path. 

A Creative Outlet

Everyone’s creative. Every single human being. The issue is that most people don’t have an outlet for their creativity. Children should have free reign to do what they please with their vivid imaginations. Musical instruments, crayons, dance shows, and so on should all be regular fixtures in your home. Creativity will always serve a person well. It’s something that has merit on its own; it doesn’t matter if it’s shared with anyone or leads anywhere! 

Encouragement and Support

Some people have their own views and their own ideas about what they’d like to do with their lives, but the problem is that they don’t receive any encouragement. So as a result, they keep them buried deep down. It takes a confident person to push through the doubts and follow their dreams without the support of others. If you develop a system of encouragement and support with your son or daughter early on, you’ll be creating a framework that allows them to follow their dreams. And who knows what kind of journey that might take them on as they grow up? 

An Optimistic Outlook

Life is all about attitude. If you think that the world is a cruel, hostile place, then that’s the world you’re going to find. If you think it’s a flawed but inherently beautiful world, then that’s what you’ll find. It’s not hard to see that it’s better to have the second attitude! Regardless of your own views of the world, make sure your children are seeing the world in the right way. The older you get, the more you discover that it’s the people with the positive outlook on life who usually mold the world in their creation. 

As we said at the beginning of the article, it’s not easy being a parent! But it is worth it. Give your child the best possible start in life, and you’ll be giving them the tools to the best, more brilliant version of themselves.

16 August 2018

Personal Development as a Busy Mom: How Can It Be Done?

When you have a baby your life changes forever- your number one priority is now them, instead of yourself. While this is of course the way it should be, it doesn’t mean you have to give up on yourself completely. Quite the opposite, continuing to learn and develop yourself now means that later down the line when you return to full time work, you’re in the best position possible. You can earn more money which can make life easier for your family. As a busy parent you won’t have all the time in the world to devote to personal development, but it’s worth doing what you can, when you can. As your child gets older, goes to school and becomes more independent you’ll have more opportunities to work on yourself. Here are a few ideas for developing your skills, earning money or making yourself more employable in future.

Study from home
The great thing about getting educated these days is that you can do it right from the comfort of your own home. These courses are completely accredited and hold as much weight as those given by a standard university. They allow you to study in a flexible way and part time, which is incredibly useful for parents who want to better themselves but aren’t able to go back into full time education. You could do a college course, a university course or even a masters. If you have a degree in a manufacturing, transport or logistics based course for example you could do something like an online masters in supply chain management which would allow you to specialize. Regardless of what level of education you’re currently at, studying from home will help you get to the next stage which will always result in better job opportunities. If you start when your child is under a year old, by the time they’re starting school you’ll be just about ready to graduate and can start applying for jobs.

Start an online businessYou could buy or sell items, you could sell services, you could tutor (either by having people come to your home or via video chat) or you could freelance. There are lots of options for earning money from home which are flexible and would suit a busy parent. You’re the boss so you call the shots, you get to choose your hours and can control your workflow. This allows you to continue developing your skills, and could even become your full time job later down the line. Even if you do return to your old job or a regular salary job, these things all look impressive on your CV and mean you don’t have gaps in employment- even while raising a child.

Invest time into hobbiesHobbies are important for people of all ages. They can help you to develop new skills in a fun way, and having something productive to do can be great for mental health. If you have an hour or so every now and again where your child is looked after by your partner or family members, you could use this time to do something you enjoy. It could be anything from cooking classes to gardening, a sport, writing- whatever grabs your interest. More than just about having fun, hobbies can help you to meet new people and expand your skill set, hobbies are always of interest to employers and so it’s another thing that could improve your job prospects later on.

06 August 2018

A Valuable Lesson: Teaching Your Little Ones About Saving

Often, it’s challenging to budget each month and still have cash left to enjoy, and save, especially in a busy family home. However, for a young family to thrive, and maintain financial well-being and security; it’s a skill that parents need to be adept at, and pass on to their children. Young minds are impressionable, and like little sponges; therefore, the life skills you show them, will sink in and help them in their future adult lives. The sooner you teach your little ones skills with budgeting and saving their money, the better they’ll become with financial skills. Consumerism is only growing stronger, and there are more ways to shop and spend money than ever before. 

Therefore, you’ll want to equip your kids with as many money skills as possible before they head out, to study, work, and take on adult responsibilities. The following are some tips and ideas on how to begin influencing your children and their long-term financial choices, and help them budget with their allowance, so they too can enjoy a secure and comfortable future.

A Valuable Lesson: Teaching Your Little Ones About Saving

It’s Time For Responsibility

One way for your kids and teens to learn how to budget is to let them put it into practice while they still live at home. Providing weekly pocket money, or a monthly allowance, in exchange for jobs and chores will reiterate how they can earn in the future. If they want to buy something in particular; encourage them to save their own cash so that they can buy it themselves. Working towards something they want, saving successfully, and eventually going to buy it will give them plenty of positive associations with saving money, and ensure they continue their good habits into adulthood. 

Open a bank account for your kids and go through their monthly statements with them. Children and teens will soon get to grips with how and income, savings, interest, and spending will work on a larger scale in the future. Look into how goal setting works so that they can work towards something major, and they’ll feel like the money they’re saving is more than worthwhile. Providing your kids with enough information regarding finance will make sure they make smart decisions when it comes to cash in the future, and won’t be coming back to mom and dad for handouts and loans. 

It’s Best To Lead By Example

It’s no secret that the best way to influence your little ones is to lead by example. Your kids will constantly be soaking up what you do and mirroring their parent's behavior, even if they don’t realize it, so become a great financial role model for them. Explain how your household bills work, and the reasons that you go out to work; ensure that they can grasp the idea of generating an income so that you have the means to pay for life’s essentials. 

You can pass on the knowledge about budgeting your monthly outgoings to older children and teens, so they understand how all borrowed money has to be paid back. Educating your kids on how and why adults spend their income, will ensure they’re financially savvy when it comes to leaving the family home and setting out into the big wide world.

03 August 2018

4 Common Bad Habits Kids Have That Compromise Their Oral Health

As children grow into their baby teeth and develop their permanent set in adolescence, parents often worry about the kind of habits that they may carry on into adulthood that could lead to problems later on. Fortunately, teaching children how to avoid certain habits while young prevents these possible complications from happening. It’s much easier to recognize and redirect these worrisome patterns early on, and so you should know which are considered the most likely to cause long-term damage.

4 Common Bad Habits Kids Have That Compromise Their Oral Health

Late Night Drinks and Snacks
You’re not likely to let your children stay up late on a regular basis, but there may still be family activities or special events where they get to stay up past a usual bedtime. Sleepovers, movie nights or family vacations mean fun for everyone without worrying about a usual schedule. When this includes eating and drinking after hours, it’s far more likely they may resist or skip out on brushing their teeth before a bedtime that’s not routine.

Non-Food Objects in the Mouth
While babies cutting new teeth may be known to stick anything and everything they can get their little hands on straight into their mouths, older children can also struggle with chewing on non-food items. If a child seems to indulge in specific non-food items like soap, chalk or dirt, you should consult a physician in case of nutritional deficiencies.

Teeth-Grinding and Nail-Biting
Like adults, children can find themselves biting their nails or nibbling on pencil tops without even realizing it. Grinding their teeth at night while they sleep can become a self-soothing habit during the day, as well, which increases the wear on their enamel and the strain on their jaw. This leads to possible permanent damage once their adult teeth start to develop.

Frequent Access to Sugary Foods
It may seem that all children have a bottomless pit for an appetite, but allowing them free range of the pantry can lead to dependence on junk food and the sugary treats they love the most. Sugar-based cereals and drinks are often the biggest influences on these habits, as well as unplanned and easy snacks like candy and cookies.

Proactive oral hygiene means more than just brushing twice a day. A dentist may even recommend not swallowing fluoride toothpaste and also rinsing with water in between sugary drinks like juice or even milk. However, it’s also important to keep an eye out for bad habits like those discussed above.

02 August 2018

4 Ways To Spend Quality Time With Your Teenager

Younger children are easy to spend time with – they need you with them, and they want to be with you for as much as possible anyway, so when you tell them you’re going out for the day, they will generally willingly follow. Teenagers are different. They are a lot more independent and know their own minds, and often want to be left alone. That can be a sad situation for parents who want to be able to enjoy time with their children, no matter how old they are. If that is the case for you, here are some suggestions for ways to spend quality time with your teenager. 

4 Ways To Spend Quality Time With Your Teenager

Go Shopping 
Assuming your teenager enjoys shopping, then going with them can be a great bonding experience. You can shop for anything – it doesn’t have to be clothes and shoes, but could be music, books, video games, or makeup. There might be a special occasion to be shopping for such as Christmas or a birthday or anniversary. If this is the case, make sure you listen to your teenager’s opinion about what to buy people – it will make them feel valued and make the shopping trip even better. As a treat, take them out for lunch and perhaps a pamper session while you’re out of the house. 

Do Errands 
Errands need to be done, even if no one particularly wants to do them, and if you can take your teenager along with you, it will make the tasks a lot easier. Firstly, you’ll have someone to talk to, and this will show your child that you enjoy their company and want to be with them. Secondly, errands will teach your teenager responsibility, and how to successfully run a household. These are skills that will certainly come in useful in the future when they head off to college or have their own home. Eventually you can ask your teenager to do these tasks on your behalf, and they will feel appreciated and like an adult, which will also make them feel happy. 

Do Something They Like 
Spending time with your teenager should be as much about them as it is about you. There might be something you are keen to try, but if your child doesn’t want to do it, then it will be difficult to persuade them otherwise. Instead, as what it is they want to do, and try to accommodate it. They might want to see a particular band in concert, so you could check out ticketsales.com, purchase tickets, and go along with them. They might want to try a new activity, or start an evening class. These are all things you can do together. 

Driving Lessons 
Something that most teenagers will want to do when they reach the right age is to learn how to drive. This is something that, with a lot of patience and care, you can do for them, and it will give you the perfect opportunity to spend time with them. Make sure you are confident in driving yourself so that you can properly teach them safely, of course.