By: Hana Arafa
Our lives have become so busy and stressful to the extent that creating quality time with our own children is becoming more of a challenge. As working mums and dads or even stay at home mothers with a lot of responsibilities to juggle, we regularly feel guilty that we don’t spend enough time with our children to nourish them emotionally and give them all the love and care that they need and deserve.
Fulfilling their basic needs is one thing and connecting with them is another. When it comes to bonding with your children, you don’t have to do major things every day. By doing small gestures throughout the day, you let them know that they are always on your mind, no matter how busy you are.
1. Make waking up time special
The first few minutes in your children’s day can make it or break it. For a warm positive start of their day, shower them with lots of hugs, kisses and tickles in the morning.
2. Keep eye contact
When your kids are telling you an emotional story about their day, listen to them attentively while looking in their eyes. This way, you’re making them feel important, validating their feelings and teaching them good listening skills as well.
3. Chat in the car
Ask them about their school day, their friends, and their happiest and worst moments. Get engaged with their stories and even share your own with them.
4. Empower them
Take their opinion about one thing every day. Ask them what they would like to have in tomorrow’s lunch box or what they would like to have for dinner the next day. Let them choose what to do in the weekend or who to meet and play with. Children enjoy taking decisions for themselves and their family. It makes them feel that you trust them and boosts their confidence.
5. Have fun on the go
Children love to do silly things. Do a quick funny dance in the kitchen or sing a song with them while doing a house chore. Play verbal games with them like ‘I spy’ while having something else in hand.
6. Keep in touch
Children love physical connection with their parents. It increases their happiness hormones and makes them feel secure. Warm gestures like a hug, kiss, pat on the shoulder, stroking their hair will make them feel loved and desirable.
7. Bond over dinner
Children who have dinner with their parents more often are happier and thrive better than others. It’s a great opportunity to bond, share some stories and some good laughs.
8. Hang out in bed
Let them have a perfect heartwarming closure of their day and get into bed with them. Read them a story, talk and cuddle in the dark. It’s a great way to connect and wind down for both of you.
Bonding with your family is not an impossible quest. No matter how busy you are, it always pays off when you give some thought to whom you care about. Now, how are you going to connect with your loved ones today?