“It’s not what we do once in a while that changes our lives. It’s what we do consistently.” – Anthony Robbins
It’s boring, I know, but consistency is a keyword to success in single parenting. Some of us come by this naturally; to others, consistency represents an uphill battle, especially when managing all of the parenting responsibilities on your own. But like everything else you do, just a little extra effort can result in big rewards.
Success always starts with goal setting. This can seem daunting because, when we first have our babies, we have grand plans and visions of them becoming great athletes or scholars, curing world hunger, and embodying powerful personalities with hearts of gold. And then you get into parenting, and you’re just glad that they can walk, talk, and clean their room. (Okay, most kids don’t clean their room. But when they do, it kind of feels like they cured world hunger.)
These are the goals that I have decided to make consistent in my family life: I want my kids to feel loved, so I make a point of setting aside time each day to tell them they’re special and priceless to me; I want them to look back at their lives and realize they felt safe, so I make sure that I do what I say I’m going to do to build security in them; I want to teach them responsibility, so I check grades every Sunday night to determine if they’re doing what they should be doing; I want faith to be a foundation for them, so we all go to church on Sundays, even when we don’t want to; I want them to live a healthy lifestyle, so we talk about portion control, and we go to the gym. Last but not least, I want them to be able to hold conversations with someone without looking at their phone.
Your idea of successful single parenting might be completely different than mine, but one thing is for sure—consistency is the key to parenting. Creating patterns and habits will determine who your kids will become.