Children look to their parents as examples. When parents don’t participate, the kids see this and may copy the behavior…choosing not to participate in things. I was talking to someone recently and they said they always thought there parents were boring because they never dressed up for Halloween or other holidays. While you may accept being boring, the are benefits to parents having fun with their kids:
- builds a family identity
- creates confidence in the children
- strengthens internal bonds
- can create lasting traditions
- less behavior problems, drug abuse, teen issues
For you as a dad personally:
- reduce stress levels
- increase serotonin (makes you happy)
- create better relationships with your kids
- score a few points with the wife
Ways to have fun – you’ll notice none of these involve electronicsor TV
- Playing Games – Board games, hide and seek
- Food – Eating meals at a restaurant, picnic at a park, eating outside, having them help you cook
- Creative projects – carving pumpkins, using sidewalk chalk on the street
- Vacation – from camping to a luxury resort, there may be something to do for everyone.
- Sporting Events – doesn’t even have to be pro, it could be college or even high school sports
Tips for success
- Brand the event – Instead of just game night, call it the “Smith Family Game Bonanza”
- It’s also crucial to set aside time to have fun. Put fun in the calendar.
- Make then regular activities. Do it weekly, monthly, or whatever makes sense
- Ask your children what they want to do too. What you think is fun may not be the same for them.