Children learn by imitating adults. They copy what they see you do, not what you tell them to do. Seeing your three-year-old stomp around in your high heels is cute. Experiencing your 18-year-old drive the same way you do is terrifying (and I really, really wish I had never ever used a mobile phone while driving with them).
~ Michelle Archard – I Wish I’d Been A Better Role Model For My Kids
I believe one of the best things you can do for your kids is to be a good role model (and not be a hypocrite). That’s why I haven’t had a drink in nearly five years; I don’t want my kids to grow up as binge-drinkers like the former me. It’s why I don’t drink soft drinks; I don’t want to do anything that I don’t want my kids to do (I see so many people drinking Coke or Pepsi but are annoyed about why their kids are upset when they are told they aren’t allowed it also).
I’m not trying to be all self-righteous about it though; I do bite my finger nails (my last remaining bad habit/addiction) – but I’m planning to replace that habit with a healthier one on my 35th birthday in two weeks time.
Kitty and I both enjoy reading and Kitty ensures the boys visit the local library at least once a week to borrow books and enjoy reading together; this also teaches them that borrowing things is perfectly fine; you don’t have to own everything.
It’s also why I make time to enjoy exercise (and try to help Kitty have free time to do this too – although admittedly not as much as I should) – if our kids see us enjoying exercise as part of our normal lives, I’m hoping they’ll grow up incorporating it into theirs.
Here’s hoping anyway.