I became a dad in 2012. Growing up the oldest of 7 kids, I was well versed in the basics of taking care of children. I couldn’t wait for my opportunity to have one of my own. From day one, raising my daughter to understand why something should or shouldn’t be done has been a goal of mine. Parents can get into the routine of telling their children to do something, but never taking the time to explain and help them understand the importance of it.
For example, “Go clean your room.” Kids hate doing it and it is a constant battle to keep it going. My daughter used to be the same way. I took a step back and asked myself why I liked clean rooms. I like the feeling of being in them and it lowers my stress. After too many battles with room cleaning, I decided to take a different approach.
We cleaned and sat in the room. I’d point out how the order of things was peaceful. I would talk out how it was easier to play when you had more room and knew where everything was. The key was consistency and developing good habits. Was it a magic spell that made her obsessed with cleaning? No. But she doesn't complain about it, and over the past few years, she has grown to appreciate organizing and cleanliness in a way most kids don’t.
- Matthew Skinner