Create meaningful experiences with your loved ones that will have a positive effect on their lives.
When you think about the meaningful experiences you’ve had so far in life, what springs to mind? As a child, I spent hours in the kitchen with my grandfather making anything from flapjacks to warming up soup from a can – the most important thing was, I was doing it myself and he was patient enough to teach me. When I was with my late grandmother, I would spend so much time helping in the garden or with chores. In my year 5 Christmas concert, I played a homeless woman who was taken in by strangers so she wouldn’t have to be alone at Christmas. As an adult, I want to work hard to make the world a better place.
Some meaningful experiences mean deepening connection: in the early(ish) days of our relationship, Ian and I had a child free evening. Instead of going out, we stayed in and spent almost the whole night talking and exploring each other emotionally, intellectually and physically. I didn’t sleep much that night, and as I noticed the first rays of sunlight hit the glorious Welsh mountains near which he lived, I knew we were beginning something very special.
To put it simply, a meaningful experience adds value to your life in a profound way. It’s not just the furthering of your business or personal goals. It brings a shift in your way of thinking, a lifelong benefit. For me, love is often a central theme.
How to create meaningful experiences with your loved ones
Switch off. It’s so easy to sit in front of the TV or games console and waste a whole day. In moderation, I don’t see much wrong with it – after all, we all need a bit of downtime. But let’s face it: no life-changing, meaningful experience ever started by binge-watching Friends on Netflix. Switch off the devices and start hatching a plan.
Volunteer. Volunteering has a great effect on a person. Not only does it create a good work ethic, but volunteering for a good cause improves lives in the here and now.
Work alongside each other. A few weeks ago, Caden wanted to work on his maths, but I was busy. I got Caden in the kitchen with the laptop and worked alongside him. The result was a clean kitchen, some one-on-one time with my son, and a seven-year-old that is on his way to mastering long multiplication. Working alongside your children, even if it’s on different things, gives you a chance to demonstrate focus and hard work while being on hand to help.
Reconnect with nature. Raising our children to feel comfortable in nature is one of the best things we can do for them. Spending time in nature has been proven time and time again to boost physical and emotional wellbeing.
Leave a skill. What skills did you miss as a child that would have helped you be more prepared for adulthood? What are you exceptionally good at, that you could help others to do?
Demonstrate respect. One of the most important life lessons for any person is to give respect. Respect each other, respect other beings, and respect our world.
Explore. Encourage curiosity in any activity you do together – this is how we discover the world. What does this button do? Where does that path lead? Taking time to explore places, activities and things safely with your child will help them develop a sense of curiosity that will last them their whole lives.
What meaningful experiences are you giving your kids? Let me know in the comments!