Family fitness and healthy home business expert urges parents to guard against over scheduling their children and teach their children by example.
Today, family fitness and healthy home business expert, Sarah Clachar, urges parents to guard against over scheduling themselves and their children. As school starts both children and parents alike are bracing for the increased busy-ness and frantic schedules. Founder of the home business resource, http://www.yourhealthyhomebiz.com, Clachar advises parents to look carefully at what they commit to and do the same for their children's schedules.
"If I was going to write my essay, 'What I Did This Summer'," reflects Clachar, "the most significant experience I would write about would be what I didn't do. For most of us we relish summer days because we have less commitments and focus more time on what counts - family time and taking care of ourselves."
But it's hard to hold onto this sensible way of living when school starts again.
Cultural expectations push parents to squeeze more into their lives than what's sane and possible.
New technology encourages people to think they can fit even more in. In this app-oriented culture, people think they can stay in touch with more people, build more relationships, fit more into a schedule, get more tasks done, and process more information each day.
And cultural pressures also make people feel bad about not accomplishing more each day.
"We extend this expectation to our children. We feel if we don't fit in enough playdates, karate practice and music class, we're depriving them. We're under enormous pressure to schedule ourselves and our children silly," emphasizes Clachar.
But as the levels of stress experienced by adults and children alike indicate, these expectations of what brings happiness and success are misleading. To create a rich and successful life, adults need to spend more time focusing on important, core areas of their lives.
And children need less activities and more time with their parents.
"Unlike what we learn on Facebook, love, respect and friendship is not a game of numbers. And self-worth is not found in all the things you do each day - but how you do the important things," says Clachar. "We need to keep this in mind and help our children internalize these lessons as well."
To prevent overscheduling and to gain more time together as a family, Clachar urges parents to do things like:
§ Avoid signing children up for organized sports or activities until 6th or 7th grade. Instead Clachar advises parents and children spend time together as a family getting active with a soccer ball or biking.
§ If children are interested in learning new activities that their parents can't teach them, like rockclimbing or karate, Clachar suggests parents take the class together with the child.
§ Think twice about social commitments and playdates. Clachar encourages parents to think of the family as their children's primary focus of socialization and choose friendships and social engagements carefully accordingly.
Instead of scheduling activities outside of the family, Clachar urges parents to plan for more family fitness and family-oriented activities. In addition, Clachar recommends carefully guarding unscheduled downtime for both parents and children.
For more information about how to combat over scheduling, please read the entire article at http://fitfamilytogether.com/healthy-home-biz/over-scheduled-kids.