Advice: Let go of parental guilt

Working parents often experience guilt and in their quest to ensure that, their children are happy, they sometimes lose sight of what they really need.

Guilt is a human emotion that comes from loving your children, but it won’t change anything and it will take away from the time you do have with them.

Working parents have to figure out how to balance it all, but one thing you do not want to do is spoil your children by buying them material things.

Sometimes just limiting your social life, or working out a schedule with your husband so that you both get time during the week to exercise or run errands, allows you time for yourself while the other parent has one-on-one time with the children.

Don’t lose focus on what is important, do not feel guilty about not buying your children the latest technology or not putting them in a travel team, or multiple extracurricular activities or volunteering at every school function.

Every family has to figure out what works for them. What your children need most is your time.

Guilt is wasted energy that you could be using to enjoy the time you do have with your children.

Don’t worry about the house being perfectly clean, or feel guilty about buying dinner once a week at the drive-thru.

One of my favorite sayings by Gretchin Rubin is, “The days are long, but the years are short.”

This is so true. Make the time you have with your children count. Turn off the cellphone, listen to them, and be present.

Maria Luisa Salcines is a freelance writer, and certified parent coach with The International Network for Children and Families in Redirecting Children’s Behavior and Redirecting for a Cooperative Classroom. Follow her on Twitter @PowerOfFamily, Instagram mlsalcinespoweroffamily or contact her on her blog FamilyLifeandFindingHappy.com.