How are you feeling about schools being back? Are you relieved that the summer is over – or already missing lazy mornings?
Recently I spoke with a client who wanted some help creating a calmer morning routine. In our conversation we discovered that there was one step that was going to make all the difference to her.
I want to share that with you today and also why it’s such an important step for solving behavioural problems in the morning routine.
Watch the video or scroll down to read more…
Who doesn’t feel a bit stressed out by having to get X number of kids out of the house by a certain fixed time? As a result, most of us start nagging our children to get on and hurry up…
The thing is, when we’re a bit stressy like that, children tune out. They get grumpy, go into dreamland or start doing something completely different, making it very difficult to get ready in time. You try to keep your cool, but when there are only 10 minutes to go, you have to ramp it up and everything gets a bit hectic and voices can be raised.
It can feel really difficult to get out of that cycle.
So the step I’m going to share with you today is actually not at all glamorous, or fancy. You might even call it boring. But it is an absolute game changer for morning routines.
It’s about being prepared the night before.
This is about having the lunches prepared, the ironing done, the uniforms laid out, the breakfast on the table – anything that you can do the night before.
This can be challenging, because we may not feel like doing these jobs when we’re tired.
But it’s so worth it!
When there’s less to do you’re calmer. You can slow down and be more available to your children. And this means more space for connection, and connecting makes all the difference to your morning.
Here are three things you’ll probably feel more inclined to do, when some of the chores are done the night before:
#1 – Accompany your child…
…instead of just issuing instructions. I remember a father I was working with had a kind of epiphany over tights. Previously, he would come into his daughter’s room and tell her to put on her tights. And this was a cause of stress for them both because she just didn’t do it! I suggested he accompany her with putting on the tights by sitting down with her, picking up the tights and asking which foot she wanted to put in first. He realised that if he did it like that, it would be completely different. And mornings really were very different for that family after that.
#2 – Empathise
If one of your children is resisting or upset, I recommend empathising with them. It’s much more effective than being Mr or Mrs Fixit. Difficult feelings like resistance or upset just want to be heard and seen. They want to be understood. When your child feels that understanding and empathy they’ll more easily go on to do what you’re asking them to do.
#3 – Lighten the mood
I recommend connecting with your children by making the odd joke. It could be a bit of slapstick, a bit of getting things wrong on purpose – depending on the age of your child. If you lighten the mood, that can lift the whole morning.
These are the things you’ll find you have the time and the presence of mind for, if you do some preparation the night before. It’s about creating a safe container for your family to connect and do the things that they need to do in the morning. When there’s less rush-rush it will feel much safer for your child and help to eliminate behavioural problems, so that your morning routine becomes more enjoyable for everyone.
If you want some more information on how to have a great morning with your children, make sure you’ve downloaded my guide below – Solve the Struggle with Your Kids – because there you’ll get access to all the tools as well as what I’ve talked about today.
And to read more about how to help with back-to-school issues, check out this blog post.
Solve the Struggle with Your Kids
The 6 Wise Parenting Powers
Download my no cost guide to raising a secure and happy family.