To be a great parent, sometimes you have to take a few moments to be a kid yourself.
Especially with young children, it’s hard for us to not want to spend every moment around them, watching their every move and catering to what needs to be done at work, or around the house. By trying to be the best parents we can be, many times we create our own little jails made up of responsibility and obligations, slowly driving ourselves insane.
Spending a little time by ourselves, or catching up with an old friend, or even just a good workout at the gym is absolutely invaluable when it comes to being a more present and focused parent. When our minds are on something we’d rather be doing, or something that is vying for our attention, we aren’t focused on the moment, or able to enjoy our time at home.
Parenting is a give and take and sometimes you need to ride your bike off some stairs at 8am, just so you can come home and be super Dad at 9. It’s not so much shirking responsibilities as it is making yourself a priority as well. Share this with your partner too, send Mom out for lunch with a gal pal and see her come back totally refreshed. It’s life changing. We all make time to walk the dog, go to work, do the dishes, and play with the kids, but don’t forget to put yourself on that list.
Your mental health should definitely be a priority. As fathers it’s important we are an example to our children, and we have to show them how to love ourselves as well.