Finding ways to spend quality time with our children each day can be challenging in our already overscheduled days. But making time in your day for this precious “mommy and me” time is critical to your child’s sense of belonging and significance.
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When it comes to spending time with your children, what matters most is how much quality time you’ve spent with your children. Studies have shown that the quantity of time you spend with your child is much less important than the quality of that time. Quality time can be defined as time when you are fully focused on your child (hint: this means turn off those smart phones and tablets!).
The more quality time you spend with your child, the more your child is going to know that she matters, that she’s important, and that she belongs. This is going to put your child on the path to becoming a secure and well-adjusted adult.
Give Your Special “Mommy and Me” Time A Name
One way to emphasize to your child that she is significant is to let your child know that you’ve set aside special time to spend with her. You can call it “mommy and me” time (or “daddy and me” time because dads need to do this, too!), or you can call it something else. No matter what you call it, by giving this special time a name you let your child know that she is special and that you value spending time with her.
Okay, so you’re probably thinking to yourself, yes this all sounds wonderful and I know I should be spending time with my kids but how am I going to find extra time in my already overscheduled day? The good news is that you can easily make time in your current daily routine.
The truth is that we find time for what is important to us. If spending quality time with your child is important to you, you will find the time.
But if you’re having a hard time thinking of ways to make time, I’ve listed 3 easy ways to sneak in this important “mommy and me” time without having to make huge changes to your current schedule.
1. Stop what you’re doing and play with your child for 10-20 minutes.
I know this sounds so simple but it’s really hard to do. Pulling yourself away from finishing up that last load of laundry or that work project you so desperately want to complete takes real effort. But like the Nike commercials used to say, “JUST DO IT.” You will feel better about it and it will show your child that you value him and believe it’s important to spend time with him. Your task will still be there waiting for you when you’re done but the precious moments you could have spent with your child will be gone.
2. Add it to your calendar.
I’ve found that if I set aside time on my Google calendar the more likely it is that it will be accomplished. Treating “mommy and me” time like your other appointments forces you to prioritize it like you do with your other commitments. Add a reminder as an extra push to force you off of the computer or to remind you to stop whatever you’re doing.
3. Transform current routines into quality time.
Bedtime, bath time, or reading time all great routine times that can be transformed into special “mommy and me” times with just a few tweaks. Remember to name this time and refer to it by its special name. Let your child pick the activity but make it easy by giving him a few choices, like reading an extra book, playing in the bath for a few more minutes, or playing with his favorite toys. The important thing is to emphasize that this is his special time with you.
Start Implementing These 3 Easy Ways Today
Start implementing these 3 easy ways to make “mommy and me” time a part of your daily routine today. When you start to do this consistently, the attention-seeking misbehaviors of your child will begin to disappear. This equates to more time in your day to devote to things that matter since you’ll spend much less time dealing with an unruly child.
For more parenting tips and information, I highly recommend checking out Amy McCready’s online course, Positive Parenting Solutions.
How do you make time for “mommy and me” time in your busy schedule? I’d love to hear about it in the comments section below.