It’s easy to lose track of your own goals and dreams when you become a parent. You move from survival mode with an infant to trying to keep up with school, activities, work, and relationships. Before you know it, it’s been months (if not years) since you’ve done a single thing to work on your goals.
For me, those goals were focused mainly on fitness. While I did some work on both, it was never a consistent focus until recently. It felt selfish to take time away from my sons to focus on myself. The truth is that it is anything but selfish. When I take the time to work on my own goals, I am a happier, more content parent. I feel more present when I’m with my sons because I’m not thinking about all the things I should be or wish I could be doing. When I devote time to working out or writing, I have more energy for my family.
I am also a firm believer that it is good for our children to see us working towards achieving our own goals. Whether we like it or not, everything we do sets an example for our children. They learn how to do life by observing their parents: the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Over the last several months, I’ve made a concerted effort at setting the best example for my sons. I signed up for, trained, and ran a half marathon this last fall. They played in the room while I ran on the treadmill. When I came home from long runs outside, they would ask me how it went. After that, I committed to an eight-week online workout program. Again, they played in the room while I did workouts. After a few weeks, it became a routine for us when we got home every evening. On nights I didn’t want to work out for any reason, my sons helped hold me accountable.
While I help set an example for them, they help me by being my accountability partners and cheerleaders. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
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