When you make a choice to start a family, I don’t think you can quite comprehend the roller coaster journey you are about to embark on. You have the excitement of finding out you are expecting, you have the enjoyment of watching the pregnancy bloom and the lead up to the birth. The birth itself can be quite the event and those early newborn days are really just a blur of love while you get used to the new dynamics you have just created. But of course, it doesn’t stop there and as the days, months and years pass by you are always doing things and making conscious decisions for your family.
We all want was is best for our family and children, don’t you agree? There will always be big decisions that will need to be made with their best interests at heart. As a parent, you have the responsibility of making that happen. You have the joys of watching the grow and of course, you have the moments where things can be tough. It is not plain sailing. I wanted to share with you some of the less obvious ways we have our families best interest at heart. Those decisions we make daily and with a second’s notice to keep things ticking along. I hope highlighting some of these things to you will act as reassurance that no matter whether you are guiding your family through a storm or enjoying some amazing moments, that you always do your absolute best by your family. It is in our nature.
- Keeping to a budget. We will start with a practical point when it comes to taking care of our families and that is the family budget. Subconsciously you will always be ensuring you have enough to make ends meet. That you can pay the rent or the mortgage, that you have food on the table, and sometimes it can mean that as parents you go without to ensure your children have what they need to survive. Keeping a roof over the head of your family is one of those things you naturally do, but you also do it to keep you family safe, healthy, and out of harm’s way. We don’t congratulate ourselves enough for just keeping the little things, such as having a family budget and paying the bills, together and ticking over.
- Ensuring they eat well. We do what we can to try and make sure our children eat the right things. You may be lucky enough to not have fussy eaters, where they will happily eat their vegetables with minimal fuss. But then you also might have children who will only eat processed food or chocolate, and you worry, every meal time, about whether they are eating the right things. The fact is that eating habits will change consistently, and that the fact you are hiding vegetables in sauces and doing what you can to serve up the good stuff every time, is just enough to know that you are doing the very best you can.
- Learning first aid for those “just in case” scenarios. We make decisions everyday, and often the decision to take things into your own hands when it comes to learning life saving skills like CPR and first aid, is often one of the best decisions you can make for your family. Having a bls certification gives you the confidence to know what to do if an emergency situation presents itself. It means that you have the confidence to know that your family is safe with you around. It might be a little thing, but it could have life changing consequences and is certainly a decision made with the best interests of your family at the heart of it.
- Choosing the right educational path. We don’t always know what the best direction to take for our children might be, and their educational journey can feel like such as difficult decision to make. From a young age, we as parents are encouraged to teach our children things. They may go into childcare while we work and learn from nursery teachers and professionals as well, but knowing what to do about schooling can often be a stumbling block we face. From deciding whether or not school is the right route to take, to wondering which school in your local vicinity is the right one for your child. The best advice for such a decision as this is to really weigh up all of your options. Visit schools, discus homeschooling options and see what you have available to you. Once you start to explore the options you may find the decision you need to make becomes a little clearer.
- Helping them with school work. Once they embark on their schooling and educational journey you find that the decisions you make with it will be coming thick and fast. Helping them with homework, practicing different techniques, helping them with their spelling tests, and such. These are all subconscious things you will be doing to help your child thrive. It may even mean speaking with teachers and asking for ways you can help your child if they are struggling with different things such as phonics, reading or pencil technique. Doing these things are little but yet significant ways you are helping your children and having their best interests and future.
- Keeping “adult” things away from them. There will always be times of struggle. A job loss maybe, finances getting tighter by the day, stress at work or between family members, life is never going to be an easy ride. As parents you will do your absolute best to not let it interfere with day to day life. You will not want your children to see your sadness or pain, the worry or the stress or feel the vibes you are giving off. Instead, you put on a smile and a brave face. You make sure they are happy and none the wiser to whatever struggles you are facing, and by doing so, you are making sure that your children live their best lives. Happy and unbeknownst to the decisions you have to make for them on a daily basis.
- Keeping fit and healthy as a family. It is important to remain fit and healthy as an individual, but ensuring that your children have the same level of motivation for exercise is something that you instill into your children purely by leading by example. However, just by being active on a weekend, perhaps going for a family bike ride of enjoying a weekend hike can be just what it needs to enjoy time as a family while making fitness a focus for the health and wellbeing of everyone. Doing these things, although fun, also means that you are taking an interest in the fitness levels of your child and doing what you can to make sure they are healthy and happy.
- Building them up when they are down. There will be times when your children won’t feel their best. They may become sad for many different reasons. Perhaps struggling with school work, maybe having falling-outs with friends or piers. It could be that they are struggling with something mentally and need help to get through it. The way you help build your child back up to their usual happy self will show that you have their best interests at heart. Communication as a family is so important, and so you by talking about things and looking at all the possible scenario is and feelings involved helps children to accept that all emotions, whether good or bad are a necessary part of life.
- Investing in their future. The money you save each week, the birthday money or Christmas money that your children gets, the little but often savings you make, adding them to a savings pot means that you are generally investing in your child’s future. Not all of is have the spare cash to do this so regularly, but we all strive to think about our child’s future at some point in our lives. That might be to help pay for university in the future. It might be to buy them their first car or help them towards saving for a house deposit. Investing in their future shows that you are doing what you can as a parent to ensure they get the very best out of life.
- Making them laugh. Finally, laughter is known as the best medicine in many different situations. Having the ability to laugh with your family, have fun and generally just be comfortable in each others’ company is a great way to ensure you have the best interests of your children and family at the heart of what you do. After all, if you can’t have fun in life, laugh and smile and generally be happy, then what good is it?
I hope that highlighting some of these things help you to realize that you really do have your children’s best interests at the forefront of the decisions you make daily. Some small, some big, but all of them with the same motive.
This post contains contributed content.