Children Health

Positive Parenting 101. Mental Health Day 2021 -Understanding… | by Disha Kiran- Life Designers | Oct, 2021

Disha Kiran- Life Designers

Mental Health Day 2021 -Understanding your children is the most powerful mental health intervention that we can make

In this world today where our children are “growing up digital” we as their parents/guardians must create a flexible but consistent daily routine that can help children feel more secure and better behaved. Include time for what they consider fun depending on their age group and respect their choices.

We need to shed the stereotypical image we have of gamers as isolated loners playing for hours on end in a dark room. In this “ New Normal’’, it’s the social interaction and connection which we have all lost …..So as much as kids need us, they need to interact with their friends too! Social media can support teens as they explore and discover more about themselves and their place in the grown-up world.

It encourages social interactions, bonding, and learning. Sometimes it’s a good way to demonstrate good sportsmanship and gaming etiquette. Watch a video or play a game with your kids; As parents, you will have the opportunity to introduce and share your own life experiences and perspectives — and guide them accordingly.

It is possible to create a win-win situation for all. Instead of feeling guilty and stressing about their video game screen time, we as parents should constructively build it into their daily schedule with the clause to balance their time between their responsibilities and their leisure time. Children are free to devote their time to digital avenues, but first, they need to mark out time for crucial activities like doing their homework, practice playing a musical instrument, doing some constructive gameplay like Lego, reading part of a novel, or playing outside. Adhering to the time limits set could work as well.

As the adults in the situation, we must first

  • Be a good role model -Teach and model kindness and good manners because children look up to the adults in their life, so parents must limit their media use. In fact, you’ll be more available for, and connected with, your children if you’re interacting, hugging and playing with them rather than simply staring at a screen or working on your laptop.
  • Set up strict privacy settings on online apps and games and parental controls.
  • Educate and explain to your children and teens about the harmful content that exists on the web, cyberbullying from peers and strangers, and what rules they need to adhere to while logging into apps /games.
  • Create Unplugged communication time -Create device-free spaces for times like eating meals and sitting together as a family which must be encouraged on a daily basis.
  • Interact with them -Don’t just monitor them online. Interact with your children, make conversation about what they enjoy doing online, the mechanics of it and so on, so you can understand what they are doing and be a part of it. Keep your children safe with open communication.

Ultimately, with changing times and the greater presence of the digital spaces in our lives, it is important to set up new rules and arrangements which can help children manage their time between the online and offline world, without creating discord in relations, so that they can experience the best of both worlds in a safe and healthy way.

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