Be mentally and physically present

“You just have to be flexible so that when they want to talk to you, you are willing to do so. I always just put aside what I’m doing and talk to them. Sometimes they would come in and sit on the bed and talk late at night. Of course sometimes it’s impossible – if I’m in Question Time or in the middle of a speech. I guess it is similar to a surgeon operating on somebody – you can’t interrupt then – but beyond that you should never be too busy to talk to your family. That’s really what it boils down to. It’s not a terribly revolutionary theory but it seems common sense to me that if you want to tell your children that they are important the best way of doing it is to never be too busy when they want to talk to you.” – John Howard, former prime minister of Australia.

  • When possible interrupt what you are doing to listen to your child.
  • Find ways to ‘turn off’ work when you are home with your family.
  • By focusing on your child you are letting them know that they are the priority.


Help your kids avoid smoking

Talk with your children about the issues and pressures around smoking, and help them develop avoidance strategies.


Promote a positive attitude to their school

Encourage your child to learn, and support the school and teachers in helping your child in this.