Updated: Mar 20
As we usher into the new year, some of us have the habit of setting new year resolutions as individuals. If you are one of them, consider doing it differently this new year by involving your kids. Not only can it be a meaningful practice about goals-setting and self-discipline, the family-bonding exercise of choosing an achievable resolution for the new year can be a fun way for kids to advance their communication and decision-making skills. In addition, it also benefits the entire household.
Now that you are keen, how do you start?
Explain to your children what a resolution is and give examples
Ask your children for ideas and brainstorm together
Narrow down to 2-3 resolutions
Ensure that the chosen resolutions are concrete, specific and manageable. Break them down into smaller achievable steps.
Here are some suggestions:
(A) Spend more time together
Examples of smaller steps: Have dinner together at home twice a week, every Tuesday and Friday. Visit Grandparent once a week. Plan a trip to Disney World. Put away hp and electronic devices an hour before bedtime.
(B) Eat healthier
Examples of smaller steps: Drink milk instead of carbonated drinks/juice. Eat vegetables/fruits at least twice a day. Whip up healthier home-cooked meals twice a week.
(C) Exercise More
Examples of smaller steps: Pick up a sport or an exercise together as a family. Go for evening walks together after dinner. Take the stairs instead of lifts when out.
(D) Reduce screen time
Examples of smaller steps: Replace x amount of screen time by other activities e.g. reading, playing board-game, doing puzzles, etc.
(E) Help out around the house
Examples of smaller steps: Clean up own bedroom once a week. Water the plants once a week. Take turns to set the table for dinner every night.
(F) Care for Environment
Examples of smaller steps: Use a recycling bin at home. Reuse plastic/glass containers. Reduce wastage of tissue paper by using hankerchief/cloth instead.
(G) Do more good
Examples of smaller steps: Volunteer as a family for quarterly community service.
Parents, remember that it’s important to lead by example and do adjust your objectives along the way if necessary. Make it fun for your child to stick to the resolution(s). Have a friendly “competition” of who perseveres the longest, achieves the quickest, etc. Find out what motivates your family, and go for it! Because, why not?