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Ricky and Friends

The Tools That Help Me Be A Better Parent

25 Jul 2014 – 06:04 PM EDT

So many times I am asked “How do you do it? How do you have time to be Ricky Martin and still be a parent?” The truth is, I am no exception. In my opinion, ALL parents are superstars. As mothers and fathers, we find hours to our days that previously never existed. We jump hurdles; we cause miracles; we push limits; and we do all this so that we may spend precious moments with our little ones.

I am by no means a perfect parent, but I strive daily to be a better parent for my boys. I am a firm believer that being a good mom and dad starts with some real soul searching and working within ourselves. Therefore, here are my 5 tips on being a better parent:

Actively listen: The keyword is “actively” and this is a challenge for all of us. The truth is with our phones, tablets, and all other electronics that “make our lives easier” it isn’t difficult to be constantly distracted. We often forget that when our children come to us, it is because they want to communicate something that is important to them. So, put down your phone, listen, and react with love.

Eliminate limiting beliefs: This is a hard one because we all have limiting beliefs. These are those ideas that were implanted in us at a young age. “No you can’t because…”, “Life is practical, dreaming is not…”, “I am not lucky…”. Remind your children each day that the sky is the limit. No dream is too big. It’s important that you not only tell them, but also believe it when you say it. Kids pick up on these types of things. Make them believers in themselves.

Meditate/Pray: Life gets so busy and stress can impact us tremendously. We need time to quiet our minds. To leave our problems and stress behind, so that we can approach our kids with the peace and love they deserve. Take 10-20 minutes to just sit with yourself quietly. Breathe. Make this your special treat of the day. Tell stress to take a back seat!

Have fun: Be a kid again! Have fun with them! Enjoy the simplicities in life. Laugh. Explore. Play games. This will create a wonderful bond with you and your little one. Many times we build a wall so that they know who the parent is and their role as our child. Break down that wall! These years will fly and the best memories are built around fun and laughter.

Learn from them: As parents we sometimes think teaching our children is all about making rules and setting limits. In reality, kids can be OUR greatest teachers. They are ever present, and we forget that sometimes. We our constantly thinking of the past, and worrying about our future. Enjoy the present moments! Use your 5 senses to savor every second. Go with them for walks and take in your surroundings. Ask them what they think. You will be surprised by the details children see that we don’t. You will learn from them some of life’s most valuable lessons.

I am far from being the perfect parent, but these are the tools I use and I find rewarding. I would love to know if you find these helpful. Share some of your tips for becoming a better parent as well!

Ricky Martin

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