Happy New Year!
Yesterday, I spent my Sunday afternoon finalizing my goals for 2017. I have a lot of them and I plan on sharing just a few later this week. (My interview with Lisa really inspired me to take the time to plan for ME this year, and I think you might like how she says she goes about creating her yearly goals.)
For myself, I narrowed my long list of goals to three that are the most important to me. On that list: "Improve Parenting."
If you've read my blog the past year, then I you aren't oblivious to some of the struggles I've faced transitioning to motherhood, especially when it didn't come that naturally to me (much to my surprise!), in addition to the challenges we have faced with our kids' strong personalities, and you know, sleep-deprivation turning me into a different person. I have been humbled to the dust the past year and a half--and it's been good for me, all things said!
But before I delve into things I want to improve, I would like to start with a big pat on my own back: Monica, you never give up!
If there's one thing I can really say I am proud about how I mother, it's that I don't settle. If things aren't working with how I've been disciplining my kids, I reevaluate. If a child is stepping up their challenge-mom game, I do my best to figure it out. If my kids face developmental struggles or show some bad habits, I do everything I can to empower them to change. I'm game to try anything, just to see if it improves the lives for our little family members, and as a result my life too.
That doesn't mean I am anywhere close to perfect, but I am proud of myself for trying every day and for being good at trying new things as I grow into being a parent.
(This is a good time for you to reflect: what are you good at as a parent? Seriously, challenge yourself to answer that because it will empower you to move forward and use your strengths to work on your weaknesses!)
So, using my "determination" strength, I'd like to move forward with some things I'd like to improve with my parenting in 2017:
1) Bring Joy Back: I can admit that I am a fairly intense person. I let the stress of motherhood get to me, and I'd like to instead inject more happiness, silliness, and light-heartedness into our home. I feel that that is a piece to my parenthood puzzle that is really missing right now and it's reflecting in the stress my kids seem to carry around with them. We need more dance parties, more giggles, and more play!
2) Connect: I worked on looking into my kids' eyes last year and that was super helpful. I'd like to continue to connect with them, and that looks like my reallllly simple goal of spending 10 minutes of one-on-one, quality-time with each child per day. I figure I absolutely have 30 minutes each day, regardless of the craziness of our schedules. Of course, I hope to spend more time than that, but that's at least something I can check off daily.
3) Get Educated: When Bella was born, I read every parenting book I could get my hands on, even books on parenting teens. (I know, I know...) However, once I had my second, I gradually couldn't keep up with my educational reading. I have a little stack of parenting books I have yet to even start that have been gathering dust for a few years. But it's time now. I need some more tools in my "mom belt," so I plan on reading a minimum of 5 parenting books this year.
If you're a parent/aunt/uncle/grandparent, what parenting goals do you have this year?
Other moms are sharing their motherhood resolutions this year, and you can find those below. If you'd like to participate in these series, please sign up on Madeline and Kiana's blogs!