"Find the joy in parenting." David Campbell shares his Five Golden Rules for parenting.

Mamamia's Five Golden Rules series takes a pervy look into the lives of Australian families. From parents of toddlers to parents of teenagers, the series asks parents to share their golden parenting rules, including the rules for their kids, and rules to just get through each day.

This week, we hear from co-host of Channel Nine's Today Extra and singer, David Campbell. David shares three kids - son Leo and twins Billy and Betty - with his wife and Hayes Theatre producer, Lisa Campbell.

As a recent guest on Mamamia's This Glorious Mess podcast, David Campbell shared his Five Golden Rules for parenting with hosts Holly Wainwright and Andrew Daddo.

1. "Manners are really important."

"My grandmother raised me and Lisa is from England, so manners are really, really important. We would always encourage our kids to not be shy, to get out there and look people in the eye and shake hands," David shared.

"We have also always been 'naughty step' parents and we find it even works just as a threat like, 'Do you want to go onto the naughty step?' and they say 'No!' and so that kind of stuff works for us."

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2. "Kids need their sleep."

"We have very strong boundaries around bedtimes," the Officeworks Back to School Ambassador said.

"For the twins, bedtime is 6.45pm, and for Leo, even though he is in his last year of primary school, we still say 7.30pm, because if he gets to 8pm he can get stroppy. Kids need their sleep, we're big proponents of that and we're strict about it," he added.

"Leo is also now old enough to do some chores, so he un-stacks the dishwasher and does his homework and all three kids have their readers to do."


3. "We expect them to have strong hobbies."

"Leo plays piano and music practice for me is a no-brainer. The twins just got guitars so I'll take them through a guitar app and I'll sit there with my guitar and help them. Just 10 minutes a day of that stuff is enough," David explained.

"For me, it's not about a career in music either and I've said this to Leo. Because of the spectre of my father [David's father is Jimmy Barnes] and how much that really messed me up going into the industry.

"But I say to Leo, who has a real talent at the piano, that I really don't care if he uses this [skill] in the future, it's only for his enjoyment and entertainment. And when he gets to 18 or 19 years old and doesn't want to do it, then that's fine. But I know too many people, including me, who wish they had finished their formal piano training or in my case, guitar. 

"While the kids are under our roof, we expect them to have strong hobbies and music is a good hobby to have."

Listen: David Campbell chats to Holly and Andrew about why he is a 'boundaries parent'. Post continues below.

4. "Find the joy in parenting."

"This golden rule is for me and it is to try to enjoy [parenting] sometimes, especially after the pressure of these last few years," David said.

"I found it really difficult with always saying things like, 'You've got to wash your hands', 'You've got to wear the mask', 'You have to do this', and not feeling like I'm barking at them all the time. 


"I feel like, especially by the end of the school holidays, I'd joke about how they think I'm angry a lot and I'm not actually, it's just that it's a lot to manage three children during the pandemic. 

"Sometimes I have to remember to find the joy in parenting even in the messy parts. As they get older, it is getting easier... so I'm trying to find the joy."

5. "Honesty is important."

"Honesty is important. Lisa and I are not really fighters, but on the very rare occasions now if we do, we say to the kids, 'Hey, Mum and I disagreed on that but we're okay and that's just what we do sometimes.'

"We try to teach the kids to be emotionally intelligent enough to tell us what they need. 

"Sometimes they may not get what they need, but we want them to let us know and we'll acknowledge it and we'll listen. And we expect as they're getting older, for them to do the same to us." 

Over to you, do you have five rules that you won’t bend on? 

To share your Five Golden Rules, email with 'Five Golden Rules' in the subject line.  

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Feature Image: Instagram @davidcampbell73.

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