There’s nothing quite as joyful as seeing a child’s genuine smile. It’s almost impossible to witness without smiling yourself. And so it becomes every parent’s mission to make their kids the happiest in the world. The question we’re left with then is: what is the best way to do this?
Many believe that teaching your child to be successful is the path to happiness. And so what follows are hours of dance lessons, math tutoring, baking practice, first aid training, swim meets, chess competitions and basket weaving. While becoming successful is important in the happiness of later life, the better way to a happier and calmer child is through simplification.
The Power Of Simplification
Too much of anything can be stressful and overwhelming no matter your age. While adults tend to become accustomed to having their daily life filled with errands, projects, and to-dos, it’s important to not force this type of lifestyle on your children. Having too much to do can be extremely overwhelming for a child and can lead to stress, disruptive behavior, and even health issues. (1)
Learning to simplify your child’s life can be beneficial both for them and for you by bringing more calm and happiness into life at home and school.
3 Ways To Simplify Their World
How can you help your child live a simpler life and reap the benefits? Here are 3 simple ways to start.
1. Reduce Clutter
Sometimes it’s as simple as the environment in which your child lives that can be causing stress. Helping your kids get into the habit of cleaning and organizing their things, and helping them to do so regularly can simplify their lives considerably.
Aside from keeping their room clean, reducing the number of toys, books, games, etc. they have can also help to keep things simple and concise. Keep only the toys and activities that your kids consistently enjoy for long periods of time. You may be surprised at how creative your child can get with just a few simple toys (I remember spending hours being entertained with a refrigerator box as a kid!). (2)
2. Loosen Up The Schedule
While at first it may seem that everything in your daily planner is an absolute necessity for the day, you may be surprised at how many activities you and your kids could do without. Help your kids feel more relaxed by taking one or two things off the calendar and allowing for more creative play and exploration.
Loosening up your schedule can benefit you as a parent as well. Fewer activities means less time running frantically around from appointment to appointment. Whittle your to-do list down to the essentials and allow for more relaxing free time. (3)
3. Quality Time, Quality Memories
While a well-planned and expensive family vacation is fun, the things that will most likely stand out to your child as memorable will be the simple family dinners, the bedtime stories, and the picnics in the park. Find those special moments to spend some real quality time with your kids. Talk to them, share with them, and laugh with them. In the end, these moments are really what is going to matter to your kids, and what will really make them smile today and in the future.
There is something to be said about the simple magic of a child’s world. Mud between the toes, flowers in the hair, and a smile across the face. In fact, there’s something we can learn from that ourselves! Helping your child live a simplified life, and learning to simplify yours as well, will help spread a calming happiness that can last a lifetime.