I’ll give you a few hints:
- It’s not buying them more toys
- It’s not giving them the iPad to pass time
- It’s not turing on the television
- It’s not sending them to the grandparents everyday so you can get some “me” time
- It’s not picking them up late from daycare so you can get some more “me” time (it’s daycare if they are under five and school if they are actually in school
The number one way to be a better parent is spend quality time with them!
I understand we are all busy, but your children cherish time with you more than anything else. You don’t need to spend every waking hour with them. They do need to play on their own and with friends. However, set some time aside each day for them.
At our house we have dinner together almost every night and talk about our favorite things for the day. I wrestle with the kids almost every day and my genitals have suffered some damage due these matches. My wife reads to our children every night. I spend a few minutes talking to them before bed.
The reason I know this is because my kids have told me. They call me out when I am not mentally present (and so does my wife).
The bottom line is if you want to be a better parent…spend more quality time with your children. Do it before it’s too late!