Do you feel that trying to raise a healthy and happy child in the modern world is more difficult now than it ever has been? Naturally, we don’t know what it was like when our grandparents were growing up, but there are a number of modern struggles that our parents or grandparents didn’t have. For example, the fear of missing out on social media, screen time, or any other digital components. But there are other things that we need to prepare our children for, especially if we grew up on the cusp of the technological revolution. What are some of the things about the modern world that we need to be more concerned about, but also, how can we stop them from overwhelming us?
The Potential for Threats in Every Corner
You only have to look at any surveillance products guide to have an inkling of how many threats there can be to a home and your loved ones. Threats are nothing new, but we can become fueled by paranoia due to more social media scrolling, and seeing the local social media group post about the latest carjacking or burglary. When we start to think that there are a lot of threats in every corner, it can stop us from leaving our house, and even stop us from letting our children out until we’re 110% sure they’ll be okay. But if we want to raise healthy and happy children, it’s about making sure our children have the skills to deal with whatever we define as a threat.
We have to be protective, especially when they are younger, due to their size, but we also need to think about external threats in terms of other children, and the burdens our children can feel in school. Bullying is nothing new, but this is where giving our children the tools to diffuse or defend against bullies becomes crucial. If you were bullied at school, you now have the knowledge to tell your child that you should ignore them, or you need to speak to the teacher. But you know fully well that as a child, these were things that almost went against the code of the schoolyard. So what is the answer?
The reality is, in many ways, about sending a short, sharp message to a bully so that they won’t mess with your child ever again. This is where martial arts lessons become handy, but it’s not about being able to use the skills in the playground; it’s about the fact that the bully needs to know that your child possesses the skills so the bully wouldn’t ever dare mess with your child. There is a very big difference between having the skills and using them, and being perceived as a threat.
The Difficulties in Having a Balanced Diet
As parents, we’ve become chronically obsessed readers of food labels. Sometimes these behaviors come from a good place, for example, if you have a child that is diagnosed as celiac or has an allergy to nuts, you’ve got to scrutinize every label, but for the average child who doesn’t appear to have any allergies, the concept of what is considered a “healthy” diet now has made it more confusing for modern parents.
For example, we can think about a number of diets we are told is the best way forward, whether this is vegan, ketogenic, paleo or carnivore, there’s a lot of debates between each faction as to what is the best diet, and naturally, each group will say that theirs is the best way. But having a balanced diet now is far different from what it was like 30 years ago. In many ways, the rules are simple:
- Make sure your child has the right balance of vitamins and minerals.
- Minimize processed foods.
- Make sure your child is satiated.
- Keep sugar intake down.
There is most definitely a childhood obesity epidemic going on, and when we are trying to make sure our children eat healthily, it’s not a case of just giving them more vegetables, because we face a battle at the dinner table. What can benefit us is knowing why we should be reducing processed foods and having the right vitamins. It’s not just about ensuring that your child grows healthily, but it can have a very positive impact on their abilities to feel well in themselves, improve their focus, and can make for a happy child in so many ways.
The Topic of Stress
Obesity is the modern epidemic, but stress is another one that, if we let our children get exposed to it, can impact them for life, and can take a long time for them to unlearn. When we address the concept of stress, it isn’t just environmental, but it’s also the learned behaviors our children get from us. When we get stressed, especially when we worry if our children are getting everything they need in life, it can wear us down. And we’ve got to be so aware of how we are operating in our daily lives.
If we are constantly stressed and worried about everything, this is going to send an unconscious message to our children that this should be the norm. So if we worry about things, and we sweat the small stuff, we have to be aware that eventually, our children will begin to embody these concerns we’ve had all this time. This is why it’s so important that, as parents, but also as families, that we work hard to greatly reduce stress in every part of our lives.
Bear in mind that a little bit of stress is okay, but it’s about making sure that you eradicate the medium and long-term stress. This means you’ve got to start being aware of how much you worry. Worrying too much can wear us down and as parents, we certainly do worry about our children, but the modern world is something that we can be either fearful of or is something that we need to adapt to. The fact is that your child is going out into the great wide world at some point, and you won’t be able to stop them. This means that as far as dealing with modern concerns is concerned, we have to tackle these three areas and realize that we can make changes for the better.