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As I sit here watching my three kids running around the yard, happy as can be that my husband is finally home from work to play with them, I think about how lucky I am. One, for the great family I have, and two, because my husband finally got them to go outside and be active! See, all day I’ve been battling with my children to get off video games while working my small business from my computer all day. The struggle is real, keeping my children and myself active this summer when electronics are staring us down every day has been difficult. How do we play the game? Summer activity vs. video games, the work from home mom’s struggle.
The summer days are long when all three of my kids are home. Its an all-day battle keeping them off electronics and getting them active. Being one of those Mom’s who just lets their kids be brainwashed all summer by video games was not on my agenda. I am also one of those parents that beliefs are, I was not put on this earth to regularly entertain my children. Now, I will plan trips to the local pool or library each week. Mainly, for my sanity, and to get us out of this house. Every minute of every day will not be planned out for them, though. So how do we do this, moms? How do we fight our own struggles with technology necessity and addiction while getting our kids up and active in a technology-driven world?
Pot calling the kettle black, my kids catch me on my electronics all the time
These kiddos are so obsessed with their video games and tablets. If I do not have a lot planned for that day, here are the main four sentences I will hear from my children. Can I play on my tablet? Why can’t I play on my tablet? I’m hungry, feed me. If I can’t play on my tablet, can I play on the video game system? Am I the only know who is dealing with this? My children have toys. A decent amount of them actually. Toys to play with both indoors and outdoors. Why on earth do they think the world revolves around electronics? Is it just the ages they are? Do I let them play on electronics too much? I sat here and thought about this for a minute.
This is what I came up with for at least a small insight into this problem. Kids learn from their parents, right? I love my electronics too. I run my small business out of my home. This article you are reading would not happen without technology. I depend on electronics for my business to succeed. Trying to show by example the importance of not just staring at the computer screen all day, is what I try to do. Every 30 minutes, I have my watch yell at me to get up and stretch, walk around, and play with them. I set specific hours that are less during the summer, dedicated to working hours. What I find myself doing though is even after my scheduled work hours, I find myself on my phone. Checking social media accounts, texting family, or doing whatever. My kids have literally told me, Mom you are on the “insert device here,” why can’t I be?
Lead by example, show them there can be a balance
I am a plus-size woman. Though I am proud of who I am and will rock my curves all day long, I try very hard to teach my kids a healthy lifestyle. This is not easy to do at all. The excuse game is a game I am great at. I’ll sit on my phone and literally search for ways to get my children off electronics. PINTEREST ways to kill summer boredom. See technology can be a good thing if you actually do the things you were searching for. Do I really need the internet to tell me what to go do with my kids, though? Would it really hurt for me to put the phone down, and go for a bike ride, a walk, or even think of a fun game to play in the yard with my kids? Maybe, create a fun little exercise program we can do together every day. Show them ways to get out into the summer sun and get active. Sometimes, we just need a little mindset shift right? We can do this, not only for ourselves but also for our children. Show them that there is more to life than video games and electronics. Lead the way to a healthier, and more fun in the sun lifestyle.
Worn out, happier, healthier kids and Mom
Shifting the mindset and the way of life is going to change a few things around the house, I feel. First of all, kids (and Mom) are going to be much more worn out at the end of the day. Instead of bouncing off the walls, driving moms crazy, kids will be worn out and ready for bed by the end of the day. As for Mom, not only will you love having worn out kids, but also you will be more worn out as well. Less energy to have the mind racing at night, and be able to fall asleep as soon as the head hits the pillow.
I know that when I am more active, I am actually happier. It might take a lot of effort to get me engaged, but when I finally get myself into the right mindset and do it, I feel great. The same goes for my kids. When they get off their tablets, they are so cranky! I do not understand it. But when they come in from playing outside, they are bubbly and all smiles. I wish I could bottle up that happiness we all feel right after we do something fun and active and sell it. I would be a millionaire! Like before, I believe motivation needs to come from us first. Kids see us motivated getting outside, enjoying nature, and being active then they are far more likely to follow suit. So what will be our motivation? For me, ’it’s my kids, and now that I have had partial knee replacement surgery its also about maintaining a healthier lifestyle. No matter what size my kids and I are, ( which there are all different), we can all benefit from a healthier lifestyle.
Today is a new day, my friends.
What do I hope from all of this? That be seeing the effort, happiness, and passion that I have. My kids will indeed learn and follow my lead. Start a new routine with your family like I am going to with mine. I’ll let you know how it goes, maybe tomorrow, I’ll only get asked once if they can play on their tablets… Your right, baby steps.
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