Encouraging your kids to make the right choices in life is not something that happens overnight. Instead, it is a continuous learning process that occurs over time as your child transitions from one phase to the next. As if life weren’t difficult enough, trying to be a good person can be a lot harder with addiction in the picture. You want what’s best for your kids, and you don’t want to feel like a hypocrite. As a parent, there are certain things you can do to help spur your kids on to make the right decisions in life. And the earlier, the better.
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Establish healthy eating habits from a young age
The formative years are often the most influential in a child’s life. Furthermore, teaching them good eating habits from a young age is likely to stick with them as they grow. And the likelihood of them deviating from these healthy eating habits is also reduced if they start to learn these lessons from a young age.
Also, establishing healthy eating habits provides young kids with the essential vitamins and minerals they need to “grow big and strong.” In addition to this, encourage kids to lessen their caffeine intake or avoid it entirely due to the adverse effects it has on a child’s health, including sleep disturbances, high blood pressure, and other types of mood disorders.
Because of the bond, you share with your child, they may understand that something’s not right, even if they have no real understanding of drugs or alcohol at all. Addiction often involves lying to oneself in order to feel okay about everything else.
Encouraging regular exercise
Regular exercise is an instrumental part of growing up, no matter what age the child is. According to research, children aged six to 17 should be getting at least 60 minutes of exercise a day. For adolescents, in particular, exercise is hugely beneficial to their overall wellbeing, helping to prevent obesity, and other adverse health conditions, as well as promoting mental health and wellness.
Exercise can also aid in addiction recovery. The body knows what’s good for it, and if drugs and hangovers take regular exercise off the table, it won’t be long before the drinking leads to other health risks.
Set boundaries in place to limit temptations
Setting boundaries is crucial for children. Having the proper boundaries in place lets children know what’s acceptable or not. They are also more likely to respond better to corrections when they know what’s expected from them from the get-go. Furthermore, as a child transitions into adolescence, establishing rules and repercussions around drugs and alcohol can help safeguard them against the dangers of substance abuse.
There may come a time when being honest about your own struggles is the right choice for everyone involved. Your child may not fully understand, but you’ve at least opened the door for more honesty and future discussions.
Lead the way
Often the best way to teach children how to make good decisions is through leading by example. Teaching kids about the importance of education is also worthwhile as they begin to think of the career they might one day wish to pursue. If your kids are graduating soon and unsure of what to do next career-wise, why not encourage them to look into online learning in the meantime?
With so many courses to choose from, online learning can help broaden their horizons as to the career prospects that are available online. Programs in information technology, for example, can equip students with the skills and knowledge they need to work with computer information systems and technology.
Encouraging them to reach their fullest potential
And last but not least, one of the most important attributes you can instill in your children as they grow is self-belief. Reinforcing your love and support continuously is also essential as children grow, as is knowing that they can rely on your unconditional love and support as they learn to navigate their way through life and even despite the mistakes they’ll make along the way.
In conclusion, teaching and guiding your children on the path they should choose will require effort and parental wisdom to know what will work best for your child, as each child is uniquely different in their own way. But the results are sure to outweigh the efforts.
Being a parent in recovery simply means passing on the knowledge you’ve obtained through your life to help your children grow and prosper, using your life lessons as a basis for them to succeed.
Dorothy W. FL