We all want to be good parents. What better time to resolve to be better at this parenting thing than in the new year?

Here are 5 ways to be a better parent and build strong relationships with the kids in 2017.

Prioritize – It’s a lot easier to enjoy our kids and all the fun things we want to do with them when we don’t try to do too much. Figure out the things that are really important for you to do together (the things you want to share with them from when you were kids, the traditions and activities they love doing with you), and really enjoy them. Let go of the rest. You’ll be much more relaxed and much more present when spending quality time with your kids.

Remind yourself of how you felt as a child -- Remember when you did something that annoyed your parents and you really really didn’t mean to? But you got yelled at anyway, and your parents didn’t seem to understand. Sometimes the things are kids do really are accidental. Remember that in the moment, and it will be easier to not yell.

Resolve to spend a few minutes after school, after work, before homework, before dinner preparations, to really focus on talking about your days. Really listen to what they want to tell you without any distractions.

Work together to come up with behavior solutions -- When you’re not in the midst of bad behavior or a tantrum, sit down with your child and talk about why they’re acting up. Really listen to what the causes are and brainstorm some ways to make it better without punishments or yelling. Your kids might have great ideas.

Brainstorm your own list of solutions to dealing with your child’s misbehavior. You don’t want to yell any more than your kids want you yelling at them. What are some more effective ways to respond to your child’s annoying behavior that will curb the behavior but preserve your relationship?

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