Most wish for a new screen gadgets or an upgrade of current one. Often parents find that the time after Christmas is taken up with their kids being on the screens, not interested in family face to face time and it all ends in nagging and telling off. So, therefore, it is important to give this topic some mindful attention before the festive season starts – so our kid’s screens and ours won’t dominate Christmas. While Christmas is all about having a great time together it is also a time of long, dark and maybe cold and rainy days and it’s all too easy for the kids (and us) to spend time in doors in front of our screens. But here are our practical steps that you can take to ensure viewing doesn’t get out of hand.
Tips for managing screen time over Christmas:
- Have the ‘chat’ before the holidays start. Don’t command or nag but instead use an I-message: ‘I felt that last year I nagged a lot, and it makes me unhappy, and I don’t want to be that parent. I need your help to change that so can we have a chat about how we will agree on screen time over the holiday?’
- Come from a place of listening to what they have to say. Understand that this is important to them and they like it and accept that they feel this way then try to come to an agreement.
- Set timers to monitor the agreement you have agreed to.
- Try to have some family activities agreed to every day that bring you away from screens. Go outside, talk a walk, visit a neighbour, play a game and be together, have some fun.
Lead by example:
- Children will always gravitate toward the modelled behaviours of their parents. You are your child’s role model and so if you cannot disconnect, how can you expect your child to disconnect? If they see you reading a book, they are more likely to read. If they see you watching television/on phone/computer etc., so will they. Consider them your screen shadows.
- Be honest, how often do you: just quickly go to check your email, a text and weather online etc. If you can just ‘nip’ in and out of your screen time, why can’t they? Do you need that much screen time when you have kids around?
- Insist, for instance, that everyone in the family leaves their mobile to charge in the kitchen at night to avoid being disturbed while sleeping.
- Do you really need to have your phone with you at all time?
- Why not try a ‘screen’ free day, week or a whole holiday!
If you need support to mange your families screen time then CLICK HERE
We at ParentingSuccess Coaching Ltd ™ wishes you a very Merry Christmas