All of us spend time with children, but if we ask us this question – is it actually the quality time that I spend with my kids? We have a fear of getting answer – NO!!! As most of us are working, and our children are going to school, we get very limited time together. How to get best out of this? How to increase effectiveness of each minute we spend with our children? In short, how to spend quality time with children?
First question is – how much time we get to spend together? Parent’s are busy in office, have own work. Sometimes they bring some work to home also. Mostly, they are tired like anything when they actually reach home. On top of that if there is any unhappy professional incidence at office, then there is not even a bit of energy while reaching home. On the contrary, children are more than 100% when they meet parents. In return, they expect same. They want to have double fun with parents. In short, there is very big conflict of enthusiasm, mental condition, mood, and every thing that is needed to have fun, between parents and children when they meet in the evening after office. How can one match children at that time? If this gap remains, then there is not going to be that much enjoyable activity as such.
They are the Source of Energy –
Some of my friends told interesting thing about this situation. If we look at the time we spend with children carefully, we can see that it is the time that actually frees us from all our tiredness. During that time, we actually rejuvenate. Kind of energy children carry, can make us jump and dance. But, to make this magic happen, we have to open ourselves to accept this energy from that source, our kids. We have to engage and connect ourselves with children. Once we do this, within few minutes we can see it working. Slowly we get involved in the activity we are doing with children, and forget everything including worries, tension, tiredness, etc., which has been troubling us throughout the day. But to get all this, we need to make sure we pull out time for our children. We ensure that, in entire day, there is some slot kept aside for children. This time slot must not be pulled out as a burden. It has to be part of life. Also, there should not be feeling that one is using children to get rid of tiredness. It is part of life.
Give 100% –
Next is how effectively we can utilize the time. First and most important rule is – give 100% to children. Sometimes we do take time out but keep on watching TV, doing our work and child is playing near by. We keep on surfing channels, and child continues playing on own. If child makes noise, we ask the child to not do so. In what sense one would call this time as quality time or time for children? Hence first we have to change mindset to dedicate the time to kid. How to utilize the time? There are many alternatives.
Just Participate –
There will be situation where the child is already playing. We can just join the child and start participating in the activity with the child’s consensus. Yes! the child needs to accept us in the play. It may not be as quick as we expect. Slowly the child will accept you as a player in the play. Once it is done, then there will be a lot of fun.
Have Some Goal –
We may want to teach something to the child. We can plan some activity jointly with the child to teach it. It has to be interesting activity. Interesting in the sense that the child asks for that activity again. It may be that the thing you want to teach the child is not so interesting, but the way we plan it becomes very interesting. One can choose appropriate tool for that e.g. a game, video, story, etc.
Make a Difference –
The time we spend with child has to make some difference in the child’s activities. I am not talking of something very big here. It can be as simple as this – the child has been in the house throughout the day and you take the child to a park for some time. It creates a lot of difference. Child hasn’t seen a movie for long time and you see a movie at home itself. It does make a difference. It makes child feel good. It changes the way child looks at you.
Make Them Feel Special –
Throughout the time, we have to ensure that the child is important. It is child’s time and we are sharing it. The activities, conversation, planning, etc. has to be done keeping child’s importance in mind. If the focus is on child, then it is generally possible that the child will enjoy it.
In a nutshell, we must pull out some time for one’s children, dedicate it fully to them, and plan it to make the child special. I am sure with this approach the half an hour we spend with child will bring out effect of couple of hours.