Raising Happy, Healthy Kids

Indian girl holding an green apple outdoorWhy do parents want their children to be healthy? Is it because they want them to feel energized? To be able to think clearly? To avoid illness? To live long? Yes, it’s all of the above, but why? We want our children to be healthy, because we want them to be happy.

That’s our job as parents, to raise happy children. So, we want them to do well in school, to get good jobs, to marry the right person, to avoid drugs and follow the law. We want them to choose loyal friends, buy a home, and yes, be healthy, because we believe these things will help them attain happiness.

So where does a parent start when it comes to the health of her children? Nutrition? Screen time? Exercise? Education? Yes, all of the above, but I don’t believe that there is one prescribed “right” way to raise healthy children. I mean, three big meals a day or six small meals? Vegetarian, vegan, lactose free, free range chickens? Snacks on the weekend only? Dessert? No sweets? Play outside or join a soccer team? No TV during the week? Computer an hour a day, an hour a week? Do all the homework first thing when they get home? Free time during the week and study hard on the weekend? C average and above? A’s only?

We can debate the above, but what it comes down to is what your family believes is important. You know a bag of Doritos before bedtime isn’t healthy. But are you allowing it? If so, why? If it’s because you as a parent are doing the same, then that’s where change needs to begin.

To raise happy, healthy children, parents need to model the kind of behavior we hope to see in them. If we want our children to read everyday, they need to see us with a book in our hands. If we want them to eat more veggies, we need to buy them and put them on our plates. If we want them to exercise more, they need to see us up and moving. If we expect them to put down the Smart Phone, we need to put ours down first.

To raise happy, healthy children, we need to model healthy behaviors which will bring us to our place of happiness. When our children see that this is a way of life in our homes, they too will claim those same behaviors as their own, and become the happy, healthy children we desire.

Written by: Leon Scott Baxter, Relationship Guru

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About the Author

Leon Scott Baxter, America’s Relationship Guru, is the author of three books on relationships. His latest book, due out in 2015, is about raising happy, successful children. Baxter has used his seventeen years in the classroom as an elementary school teacher, interviews with happy, successful children and their parents, as well as his own experience as a father of two to formulate his newest book. Health is a huge component of life in the Baxter home with P90X, Insanity, a home gym, a nutrition app in the works, regular basketball, skim boarding, cheerleading, national gymnastics competitions, and limited sweets.

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Secrets to Raising Happy Successful Children

doctor-for-teen-homepageParents want it, but don’t always know how to attain it: to raise confident and successful children, who also happen to be happy. Some parents, though, have discovered the secret. Instead of trying to decode their “recipe,” I decided to ask them what it takes. Not surprisingly, I found that there are similarities among parenting styles of moms and dads who raise happy, successful children.

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5 Steps to Teaching Manners & Responsibility to Children

Mother and two childrenChildren are not automatically well mannered and responsible. They need to be taught these skills through example, with firmness and love.

Here are 5 steps to teach your children manners and responsibility:

1. It is important to start from a secure base. If you want your children to value people and hard work, and show kindness and respect to others, they need to see this behavior demonstrated by the parent(s).

2. Make sure all the members of your family know they are appreciated and important. Children need to know that they are contributing and their contribution is valued. You should acknowledge them as important and demonstrate good manners within the family unit.

3. An atmosphere of trust and safety is necessary in a family if you want to have responsible children. Your children and the parent or parents need to know that there is honesty and integrity throughout the family.

4. A family requires rules, and consequences for failure to follow the rules should be consistent and fair. Guidelines and expectations need to be clear, and good/successful behavior should be expected and rewarded. Respect for all members of the family is important and non-negotiable. If there are problems, a good parent needs to intervene and help those involved, work it out in a calm and logical manner. Respect is the cornerstone of good manners and children deserve to be treated respectfully.

5. The family needs to meet often to discuss concerns and challenges. This is how you can teach them what is acceptable human interaction and what is not. This can often be done over dinner, which incidentally is an excellent time to bond and learn what everybody is up to.

Sometimes the going can get rough, but it is definitely worth it to stay the course. It’s always nice to have children that people want to spend time with and who are agreeable within the home.

Written by: Diana Fletcher, Author & Life Coach

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About the Author

Diana Fletcher is a Stress Reducing Expert Life Coach and Author. She has published five books and her latest, Happy on Purpose Daily Messages of Empowerment and Joy for Women, Revised and Expanded Edition will be published in Spring, 2014.

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Spring Safety Tips for Children

Pixmac000086863984The return of warm weather means that children get to go outside to do various activities. It’s no surprise that along with this, children can get injured. Injuries such as scrapes, bruises, cuts, splinters, and bloody noses are the most common injuries that children can get while playing outdoors. It’s important for parents to be cautious about their children and know how to prevent these types of injuries.

Parents and Injury Prevention

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How Sugar Affects Your Kids

cheerful familyIf you have kids, you’ve probably been to an event where a conversation broke out expressing how the little ones have had too much sugar when they start running amuck.  It’s a long held belief that sugar makes kids go crazy.  Research however, indicates otherwise.  It seems that the anticipation of behavior, as expected by the parents, seems to be the only common tie binding the belief to reality.

RESEARCH STUDY

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