Introducing Project Active Family

Editor’s note: Hey, moms and dads: Resolving to do things a little differently this year—to become a more active family?

We can help you make that New Year’s resolution stick!

For the next six weeks, we’re joining forces with one of Canada’s most trusted parenting authors, Ann Douglas, on an exciting new initiative we’re calling Project Active Family.

Here’s a brief note from Ann explaining what it is, how it works, and why you and your family might want to join in.

Hello, Active for Life parents!

If you’ve tried to make New Year’s resolutions in the past, only to watch your willpower and resolve fizzle away, you’re probably wondering if there’s anything you can do to make your active living resolution stick.

The good news is that there’s plenty you can do—and the even better news is that we’re here to help you do it!

For the past two years, I’ve been researching the science of habit change—what it takes to transform habit intentions into habit actions. It’s a key focus of my forthcoming book Happy Parents Happy Kids, which is about getting to the happiest, healthiest possible place as a family.

I’ll be sharing the highlights of that research over the next few weeks—the stuff you need to know to become the active family you’ve always wanted to be; and how to make that happen in a fun, achievable, and totally guilt-free way!

How to get the most out of Project Active Family:

A new article by Ann will be posted every Monday in January – Mark your calendars!
Post your comments at the bottom of each article to share your questions, celebrate, commiserate, and support others.
You can also email [email protected] with your stories, insights, and what you’ve learned and we might include them in future columns.
Subscribe to Active for Life’s monthly newsletter for updates.

It’s the very kind of information I wish I’d had access to a decade or two ago, back when my kids were really little—a time in my life when I was pretty much the poster child for self-neglect!

I know how easy it is to get caught in a downward spiral when it comes to your own physical and mental health—but I also know that it’s possible to turn the situation around (because I did it).

That’s what I want to help you to do: to set some small-but-achievable physical activity goals for yourself and your family and to be by your side as you take those all-important first steps. You don’t have to be super fit to embark on this journey. In fact, you don’t have to be physically fit at all. All that matters is that you have a desire to make physical activity a more regular part of your life and your children’s lives, too.

What I can offer you is an opportunity to tap into support from a community of people who are working hard at making the same kinds of changes as you are: a chance to swap strategies and to offer encouragement to other parents who are quite literally walking the same walk!

That’s what’s going to make this community so special. We’re going to be making this journey together. You don’t have to make it on your own—nor should you. Tapping into support from other people not only lightens the load. It also makes the journey more enjoyable.

We’d love to have you join us.

Ann

9 responses to “Introducing Project Active Family

  1. Hi Ann, I just finished reading your book. I can’t tell you how much I got out of the great suggestions. I read it at my cottage on a solo break and since I came I am finding myself being more intentional with my time to be the parent I want to be.

  2. Hello Ann and Active for Life! I really applaud this initiative. I do struggle with 4 kids, a hands-on but busy partner and a “very full”-time job to find time for myself. We make sure the kids get their energy out, but by the time they are in bed, I am too tired to do anything but read or crochet! Also, it is not always easy to find activities that capture the interest and physical abilities of 4y olds to 9-year olds to 42 year olds! I am looking forward to learning tips and tricks to make all of us be active together.
    Natasha, I like your idea… Where are you located?

    1. Thanks so much for introducing yourself, Magali! It sounds like you have a very busy life. It’s no wonder you’re tired by the end of the day! My best advice would be to start small and to let the momentum created by those early “wins” to continue to inspire you to keep going. It could be something like aiming for five minutes of physical activity a day. Maybe dancing to your favourite song while you’re waiting for something to heat up in the microwave. That kind of thing…. BTW — Sorry we were a bit slow in spotting and publishing your comment. We’re still easing out of holiday mode! But I really appreciate the fact that you took time to add to the discussion. BTW The latest blog post in this series has just been published. You’ll find it at https://activeforlife.com/active-living-resolutions-off-to-a-rocky-start-thats-okay-weve-got-you-covered/

  3. Hi Ann, I’m keen to share your work with others via my Healthy Schools, Healthy People work with the local school district. We are hosting “Playshops” for parents, sharing ideas/tips via monthly newsletters, social media etc.. Looking forward to shining a light on your work #activeforlife

    1. Thanks so much for spreading the word, Cindy! I love the idea of those “Playshops.” Could you tell me a bit more about how they work? BTW — I apologize for the delay in responding to your comment. We’ve just in the process of unearthing a few of the comments that were posted last week but not approved until today. I’m happy to have you as part of our “Project Active Family” mini-community.

  4. Welcome, everyone! It would be great if you could take a moment to introduce yourself. I’d love to hear a bit about your reasons for wanting to make physical activity a bigger part of your family’s life in 2019 — and what you hope to do to get started. (BTW: This is a 100% guilt-free community, so don’t worry if you have more questions than answers at this point in your journey; or if you aren’t even sure you have what it takes to make this happen. That’s what I’m here for: to support and encourage you!)

    1. Hi Ann,

      We understand the benefits of being active and being outside but other commitments get in the way. We are looking for events on the weekends that help introduce families to outdoor activities. Skiing, snowshoeing, hiking….we’d love to do this in a group with other families. Looking forward to your columns.

      1. Thanks so much for that great feedback, Natasha. I love the fact that you’re looking for opportunities to be active outdoors and to do so with other families. Those are key ingredients in the recipe for fun for parents and kids alike! And I also love the fact that you’re being wonderfully “real” about the challenges that can keep parents and kids from being as active as they might like. The good news is that we don’t have to set the bar impossibly high for ourselves and our kids. In fact, it’s better if we don’t. The goal here is sustainable change, after all. Keep us posted on what your family is trying and what you are figuring out along the way. That way, we can learn and grow together!

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