How Your Own Behaviors Influence Children

Apr 10, 2014
Tagged with: How Your Own Behaviors Influence Children

Parents are very influential when it comes to the development of the children. Mannerisms, behaviors, beliefs and even actions are learned from an early age throughout adolescence. During this time, your own behaviors as a parent play a dominant role in how the children will develop as they grow older. If you view physical activity or fitness a specific way, there is a good chance the children will develop a similar view.

Some points of view about activity can be derived from the argument, “If Mom and Dad do it this way, why can’t I?” If you were to look back at your own childhood, can you remember thinking similar ways? This cycle is ever continuing, and your behavior now can inadvertently shape the youth of your family for generations to come.

What’s Good for the Goose… – When you don’t involve yourself in more physical activity, then there is a good chance that your children will hold it in the same regard. If you’re unwilling to become more active yourself, your children can become confused and wonder why it’s OK for you as an adult to skip out on the activities. They could even begin to anticipate being an adult themselves in order to become less physical. In the grand scheme of things, this kind of thinking can be hazardous to the health of your children.

…Is Good for the Gander – In order to encourage more physical activity with your children, you must participate as well. You need to lead by example as the children see you as the ruling party of the family. If you’re able to sustain running a mile without passing out from exhaustion, then that must be the way of things – according to a young mind that sees you as immortal. Children are quite impressionable and can assimilate knowledge that sitting on the couch watching TV with a bag of chips in hand is how an adult should live their life. While that is your choice to do so, you greatly reduce the longevity of existence.

Keep Moving – Being more physically active doesn’t mean you have to run on the treadmill for an hour every day or have a routine of grueling exercises planned. Any activity will be greatly beneficial such as:

  • playing soccer at the park
  • swimming in the pool
  • a family game of basketball
  • riding bikes to the park
  • A water fight on in the front yard – whether permitting

Essentially, any activity that can get your blood pumping throughout your body will do. As long as you can demonstrate the activity is enjoyable, the children may be inclined to think likewise.

Bonded Together by Health – Children are more susceptible to moments of bonding. Having a regular activity that you share with the child can put it in a more positive light. Perhaps you and the child belong to a family bowling team. Maybe weekend golfing trips are something that can be done together. Family walks to the corner market for a snack can be something more than just a walk to a child. It’s reassurance that you want to spend time with them.

Don’t Underestimate the Schedule – Time is a commodity that not every parent can afford. This could be caused by career demands, educational or other important fact of life. However, it is imperative that you make the time to spend with your child doing an activity. Set aside 20 minutes per day to do something outside or in the park. While 20 minutes may not be a lot of time, it shows your children that they are still important to interact with even with your busy schedule.

If you view physical activity and labor poorly, there is a good chance your child will too. Be mindful of your actions and behaviors for they will influence the child greatly as he or she develops. Be more active and help prolong your life as well as the life of your child. So, what are the favorite activities you do with your children?

Author: Ken Myers