Family time is important in Islamic culture, but busy and modern lifestyles can sometimes affect it. Many of us complain that there isn't time in the day to do everything, but children and family, in general, should be a priority. Here's how to ensure that family life is as enriching as possible, while still accounting for our busy lives.
Take interest in your children's lives: We all have things to be getting on with, whether that's work or other commitments, but the things going on in our children's lives – while seemingly trivial at times – matter as well.
They won't stay young for long and the work that you put in now will likely stay with them forever. They will thank you for the time you spent with them once they're grown up and they will respect you for it.
Consider making time at a “family meeting” of sorts once or twice a week to regroup as a family and share what's been going on. Don't stop at your children, either. Your husband or wife will have things in their life which they may wish to share as well. Talking as a family enriches that part of your life.
Don't cut corners: Filling children's lives with a rich array of activities is important for their development but sometimes there simply isn't time. Perhaps you desire for them to learn a sport, study literature and even experience fine dining, but finding the minutes in the day to do it all is another matter entirely.
Bring activities to your home that will enrich them. We're not talking about tutors and nannies – while these have their place, it's important for your child to spend time with their mother and father.
Can't get out to dinner? Make the most of the services today's world has to offer – with Deliveroo you can experience restaurant-quality food from the comfort of your own home. Or perhaps your child is behind on their reading? Catch up together – a bedtime story from mom or dad will go down so much better than from someone else. Which leads us to…
Give your staff the afternoon off: Many middle-class families across Saudi Arabia have at least some help around the home. Domestic workers often take on some of the burdens of childcare and raising the family.
While this is incredibly welcome, you don't want to leave the job entirely up to them – bonding with children in their formative years is incredibly important, plus, it's a lot of fun to watch them grow up!
Taking time from our busy schedules shows children that they matter – just as much, ideally more, than our business or other personal matters.
Balancing the upbringing between ourselves and those who may work in our homes provides harmony with those employees, in addition to giving our children something in return. Plus, we are able to ensure that the morals and values being instilled in them echo our own.
Treasure the time that you have with your children. They are a blessing and should always be treated as such.