New Year Resolutions for Parents

photo (4)We had a dinner party a few days ago (because we concluded that our lack of babysitter meant we were NEVER EVER getting out of the house, so we would bring people to us!), and one of the guests was a real New Year Resolution type of gal. She believes, as do I, that it is possible to change your life (if you want it enough).

Then I remembered that last year, I had in fact made some resolutions with Jinny Ditzler’s Best Year Yet book. I found the crumpled piece of paper stuffed into the front of my 2012 diary; so lets see how I did (hides behind computer monitor):

Learn enough German to speak to Missy M’s teacher

Ho hum. Another year, another language goal, this time tangled up with parenting guilt. I can speak to the teacher, but with a great deal of arm waving, Google translate service on my iPhone, and the teacher remembering random English words. 

Get on time to stuff with Missy M

This covers one of parent’s major sources of stress – how to get your children out of the front door, with all equipment, all clothing on and on the correct limb, and actually arriving on time, with sanity intact. It was mine too. With the added bonus of the Swiss Cultural hangup about time. So I bought a bigger watch, and now run the mornings like a military exercise (but without the shouting). 

So what Parenting New Years  Resolutions would I like to work towards this year?

– To listen more than I talk
– To not always need an explanation for behaviour, but look for the feeling behind it
– To wait before opening my mouth – usually the first witty retort is not the best response!
– To continue the great battle to get to Kindergarden on-time


So what are your Parenting New Year Resolutions for 2013?


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  1. ooh yes, I could add the listen more than I talk one to my list as well. Happy New Year!

    • Happy New Year!

  2. Very nice resolutions! Have you read “How to talk so kiss will listen and listen so kids will talk”? Seems inline with what you are thinking.

    • I adore that book (as you can clearly tell)! It really puts the emphasis back into listening, respect and relationships. Having a relationship with your child, just as you would with anyone, is key. The missing elements from the book, in my opinion, is those precious milliseconds between seeing a behaviour and reacting. It’s that gap that I find the real learning takes place. We can learn to say nice stuff, with nice techniques, but what gets me out of bed in the morning is the potential for a system wide change to happen for a parent: Where stress within parent is transformed.

    • When I am tired or stressed, by first goto is to want to snap. That’s one of the reasons why I work on listening first (shutting my mouth!!!!) to give me a bit of distance so the tired and cranky me doesn’t come out to play.

  3. Getting out of the house by 7:05 at the latest so I can get my daughter to daycare and myself to school without stressing out. Which might also include another resolution of getting her to bed earlier. Hmm. Worth a try. 🙂
    Kesi Brooke recently posted…Pets and Peeves of Children’s ProgrammingMy Profile

    • I have certain goals within the time of Missy M waking up, me drinking coffee and then getting out the door: at this time she must be dressed, by this time mummy must be dressed. Then time doesn’t start to fight back at the same time Missy M kicks up a fuss about the wrong coat or wrong boots.


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