School is back and in full swing and I want to make sure you don't have too much overwhelm going on in your life!
I haven't got school aged kids yet so I asked fellow busy mum coach, the very talented Jo from My Organized Chaos, to share some tips to help you encourage your school aged kids to contribute about the house (and give you a bit more balance!). Enjoy this guest post from Jo and don't forget to visit her website afterwards xx
When our children get to school age, there is a shift in their attitude and yours, you may not be conscious of it, but believe me it happens. Suddenly, they feel older, bigger and more dependent, you feel that now they are older and bigger they should take on more responsibility for themselves and in the home. It is a natural progression, yet one that can cause all kinds of arguments and fights.
A home for everything. Once your child starts school, make sure that everything they need has a home. Somewhere to put their school bag, pencil case, homework papers etc. A couple of weeks into the new term, review the set up and see what is working and what isn’t, if something isn’t working, change it.
Allow for independence. But keep some rules in play. For example, if your child can choose what to wear for school, let them decide before and get the full outfit ready. If you have a little diva, set the rule that are allowed one outfit change only, if they have the time and that you leave the house at ___am no matter how they are dressed.
Talk about it. Open up the conversation and bring up the topic of family responsibilities. Get them to suggest what they can be doing to help the family around the home. Strike a deal and make sure they understand that the new responsibility is their job. By allowing the child some say in the jobs to do around the home, they are more inclined to do it rather that you assigning them something and them rebelling.
Cut them some slack. Take notice of what kind of mood your child is in when they get home from school. So often we get so caught up in our to-do lists and jobs that we forget to notice the important stuff. If you child has had a crappy day at school (and we all have them) then the last thing they need is a nagging parent. Instead take a bit of time out, have a drink and a cookie and help them get into a better frame of mind before tackling homework or jobs.
Drop the word chore. Chore is such a horrible word, is sounds draining and boring before you even know what you are going to be doing. Instead use the word ‘job’ (sounds grown up to a child), mission (sounds exciting) or task (sounds important) or any other word that takes your fancy. Just not the word chore!
Make it fun. I know there are some people who just love cleaning and tidying, I am not one of them! So, when it comes time to get some family jobs done, stick on some music or throw down a time challenge, tell silly jokes as you do the job or pretend to be someone famous as you do it.
About Jo: Jo Ebisujima is the founder of My Organized Chaos. She helps busy mamas to organize their home and kids so that they have more time for the fun stuff.