For some, writing a schedule is easy but they never seem to be able to live according to their schedules. So, what to do about it?
It takes mental and physical skill to learn a new habit and that’s what your schedule needs to become – a habit. The effort at the beginning to get the ball rolling is hard, but the longer you keep going, the less effort it takes to keep on going, until the schedule practically runs itself. Daily repetition is the key.
Here are some pointers that may be helpful as you go about implementing a routine that will serve all the needs of your family and not drive you crazy in the meantime.
- Keep in mind that interruptions are just an extra step to be taken before going on with the next step on your routine. If we plan for interruptions they are mentally easier to deal with – they become part of the plan rather than a hindrance to the plan
- Dealing with behavioural issues/conflict/matter of the heart/character is our priority. Be prepared to put the routine aside and spend LOTS of time on this, it is more important than the what the routine says should be going on at that time
- Task orientated people need to put quality time/focus time with their children into their plan or they may feel like they are wasting time – if it’s on the list it feels more like a legitimate use of the time. Task orientated people may also need to schedule some time each day to achieve a measureable project – 15 minutes on a task that you can point to and feel like you have accomplished something TODAY. We know in our heads that the day-to-day parenting is helping us work towards very important goals for the future but we can lose sight of that in the every day sameness of it all. Somehow when I can point to the pantry and say “I cleaned out a shelf today” if helps feel like I am moving forward.
- You may need to have what I call a revolving focus. I can’t do it all with everyone all the time but I can get to it over time. This week I may be focusing on deep cleaning the house in my little minutes, next week on reorganizing my menu plans and recipe selection, the 3rd week everything is set aside to deal with a character training issue, the 4th week toilet training takes up all the available minutes. Over time though, with a revolving focus you eventually get to it all. Use those small increments of time throughout the day – the little minutes – while you wait for the kettle to boil, while the kids are packing up and coming to the table or whenever, to work on something small.
Remind yourself why you are doing what you are doing. We are not parenting for the here and now or for our own convenience. We are training up children of God and there is nothing more important a Mother can be doing.
Filed under: Routine and daily activities: structuring your child's day | Tagged: routines |