Many parents have a hard time disciplining their children. Laying down the law doesn’t come easy to all of us. Some find it so hard that they even risk their child’s health. Check it.Current research from Harvard University shows that many parents of overweight or obese children lacked confidence in implementing and enforcing various lifestyle behaviors that could help their children improve their health. When it came to laying down the law with regard to limiting television viewing, removing TV from children’s bedrooms, cutting back on fast food, reducing intake of sugary drinks, increasing physical activity, and improving the family’s overall eating habits, the parents studied scored pretty poorly in the confidence category. What this means is that these parents (446 surveyed) were unable to satisfactorily push their children to do the right thing.
I know it’s not always easy getting the kids to do what they should be doing–lord, I’ve got two champion tantrum throwers myself; and, of course, not everybody is as hard-assed as I am. But here are some tips that might just help some parents get their children to make a change:
- Have a strategy–going in blind is a sure way to fail.
- Start slowly–making drastic changes will create resentment and possibly a revolt.
- Have your child list all the television programs he or she watches regularly. Have them pick two or three, and let them know they’ve got to dump the rest.
- Choose a reasonable amount of time you will allow your children to watch T.V. weekly (I personally think 9-12 hours is fair to generous–one hour per night during the week, and two hours each on Saturday and Sunday).
- No T.V. in the bedroom, period. Same with internet–sorry–too easy to watch via web.
- Once their allotted time is up. (Click) Shut off the tube, and remove the remote.
- Set aside time for the whole family to be together for reading or talking. If you don’t like to read, better start–kids do as their parents do.
- Expect pissin’, moanin’ and grumblin’–stay strong, it’ll pass.
I realize that the age of one’s children will impact the success of this type of plan. No doubt, teens who have developed bad habits will be tough to break, but you’ve got to try anyhow. It’s why I always say, “Start early.” The younger the kids are when you develop habits, the easier it is to influence and form them. Hate to say it, but it might turn out that the only families able to successfully implement this type of regimen might be the ones with youngsters. Nevertheless, I’d try anyway if I were you. Can’t hurt.
Check in tomorrow for tips on how to get your family’s eating habits up to par. For sure, T.V. can be fun; but as a regular habit for kids, it’s as damaging as they come.