Rules and boundaries are the workings of an organized household, however these can either be difficult to set, seem overwhelming to maintain, or hard to keep up with. We have four strategies to help create a calmer environment and a more organized household.
Make family time a priority
We have talked about the importance of family time here, but setting time aside to spend time together helps the family connection. Pick a movie night, Sunday morning breakfast, or a before bed meditation. Whatever works for your family, but block this time out, and don’t let work calls, homework or sports practice interfere with this precious time.
Organize Family Rules
Sit down as a family and discuss what rules are important for you. Is it having a clean house? Treating one another with respect? Limiting yelling? Include your children in this discussion and work together to create a sign or whiteboard with the rules on them. Discuss where the sign should be posted so everyone can see it. When children are included in the conversation, they are more likely to follow the rules, and hold you to it too!
Shut off your screens
We are HUGE advocates of going dark, especially before bed (see our previous blog posts). So much research suggests the negative impact of screen time, and with this being a new dilemma for our generation, the jury is still out on the long-term effects of over-usage of screens.
Pick a time of day where you put your phone down, and encourage the kids to do the same. Many families we work with have implemented this rule, and are able to reconnect and enjoy one another, without the constant distraction of life. Sometimes, this is harder for adults to do than kids, but it will be well worth it, and create a calmer day.
For those of you who are skeptical of implementing the screen time rule, here are some further articles supporting our claim.
Create a helpful reinforcement system
Create a family jar that you can add points to for following family rules and shutting off screens. When the jar is filled, pick a fun thing to do together as a family.
Chose a sticker board or chart to help fill in. When you are holding one another accountable, and working towards a goal together it makes following the rules more fun, and feel less like work.
Also, you can create some fun competition with a family point game, whenever a family member engages in an act of kindness or respect, they earn a point. The family member with the most points by the end of the week can be the person who gets to pick the family activity for the week!
We hope that you are able to give one, or all of our ideas a try. Any change you can make as a family will be a good one!
Let us know how you’re doing!
Contact Behaved Brain Wellness Center for a private family consultation.
Behaved Brain Wellness Center
Healthier Kids – Happier Parents