We have just finished watching a health documentary on Netflix, and it made me realise that I need to make a change. My guess is that I’m not alone. You see, I’ve strayed from a few too many good habits, and now it’s time to get back on track.
It all starts innocently enough. I let the kids have a little too much tablet time, so I can get some much-needed quiet time for myself or even catch up on deadlines. Then, after a long day of chasing and picking up after two little ones, I’m often too tired to make the dinner I had planned. Convenience food it is, and a trip too many to the fish and chip shop just because it’s in the next road. And then I top off the day with a glass or two of red wine…. Because, why not?
Sure, there are worse things we could be doing. And we do a lot of things right too. But we could also do better. These little choices we make every day are important.
Here’s why your family (and mine) should think about making healthier choices.
Be there for the long run
Being mum is a critically important job. Not only do you need to be there for all the scrapes and bruises, but your kids will want you around for emotional support when they’re older. Every mums’ worst nightmare is that they won’t be around for their kids. You get this one, so I won’t go on about it.
But as mums, we have this natural tendency to put ourselves last. So, what if we don’t eat all day as long and have survived on just a cup of coffee as the kids are fed?
If you want to be around for the long run, you’ll need to put yourself first sometimes. As more research emerges, we’re learning exactly how closely related diet and health actually are. Take care of yourself now, and you’ll be more likely to avoid negative health consequences later.
Set a good example
When I sat down to think about things, I realised that I wasn’t setting a good example with alcohol for my kids. Now, I’m not an alcoholic or anything close. But I do like to have a glass of wine with dinner on most nights.
I’m certainly not saying that one glass of wine with dinner is going to harm you, but I realised that my kids have come to associate me with wine.
It’s kind of funny, but they make comments about mummy’s wine every now and again. We sometimes joke about it, but I have to wonder what they really think.
Do they think adults sit around and drink wine all the time? And if so, is that a healthy understanding? Kids are likely to mimic what they see, and I’m worried this behaviour might rub off on them in the wrong way.
And if I’m being truly honest, a glass of wine with dinner sometimes turns into two. It’s true that red wine is good for your health, but it’s not meant to be enjoyed without a break. If you’re drinking every night, it’s probably a good idea to cut back. And if you have trouble cutting back, you may be headed toward a drinking problem. Fortunately, it’s easier than ever to get help. Use an online rehab finder to discreetly connect with a rehab in your local area.
Your choices impact everyone
I’ve mentioned how you want to be around for the long haul and how you want to set a good example, but your choices affect your family in another way too.
Oftentimes, the mum is the one making most of the health-related choices for the family. Mum decides what everyone will eat for dinner most nights (every night in this household), and she often decides how much screen time the kids get.
If you really stop to think about it, you’re almost like the puppet master of your family’s health. This is one good reason why I want to step up my game. My decisions have more of an impact than I realised.
With all that said, it’s important to understand that we’re only human. You and I, we’re going to fail at being healthy every now and again. And that’s okay. If we just try our best, everyone will be better off in the long run, including parents.