In this day and age, it always seems like life is moving too fast - if you’re not careful you’re bound to miss something.
I have to constantly remind myself to take a breath and take a break from the hustle and bustle of life - I want to teach my kids to do the same (and to help other parents as well) which is part of why it’s important to me that they grow up loving fishing.
Hopefully, this simple guide will help to share my thoughts on how to nurture a lifetime love of fishing in your kids.
Show Your Own Love for Fishing
One of the things that will appeal to your children is seeing your love for fishing clearly displayed.
Passion and excitement can be contagious - if you are regularly fishing and clearly enjoying it, it will become second nature for your kids to enjoy it too.
Children are sponges - they absorb the energy, attitudes, and opinions of the people around them, especially those they love and admire.
There might be a period of time in their lives where your happiness is not as important to them, but they will always remember the fishing memories made with you and the joy they felt.
Make fishing fun! Don’t’ make taking your kids fishing a chore. If you really want them to grow to learn to love fishing, make it fun. Your fishing trips should be days where everyone lets loose. Sit back, relax, enjoy delicious snacks, make fishing into a game and enjoy the day.
Although it can be fun to make it into a game, don’t make fishing all about catching the most fish or the biggest fish. There is nothing wrong with a little friendly competition but make it a side activity and certainly don’t make them feel inferior if all they catch is an empty soda can.
Another way to make things fun is to rent a fishing kayak or canoe. It really is a ton of fun to be on the water rather than sitting on the shore.
Find ways to entertain them and keep them enjoying the journey...remember, it’s not actually about fishing...it’s about the time spent together.
Spend Time Teaching
Part of the fun of fishing is learning how to do it properly - don’t just do everything for your kids, show them how!
Showing your children how to thread the line on a fishing rod or how to attach weights and bobbers can be useful skills for them and a part of the bonding experience. All of us, especially kids, tend to enjoy things more if they are good at them, and teaching them the required skills will pay off in the end.
This is the perfect opportunity to have meaningful (but quiet, you don’t want to scare the fish away!) conversations with your kids. This is your time to be serious, be silly, and really get to know them away from phones, televisions, and computers.
Talk about nature, talk about life, talk about memories. You can tell them stories of your fishing adventures when you were younger. You can discuss the circle of life and the nature around you. Talk about life’s problems and see how many of them you can solve.
Take the opportunity to love and encourage your kids. They think you’re just fishing but you are doing so much more than that in the long run.
If you want to nurture a lifetime love of fishing in your kids, it’s really quite simple.
Get out there, show them what you know, make it fun, and just enjoy the time together. Your kids will see your love for fishing, feel your love for them, and will, sooner or later, add fishing to the list of things they love as well.
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