We firmly believe that systems, habits, and routines make people feel safe and secure and like they belong, no matter how busy and hectic life may become. Repetition makes us feel steady, and feeling steady makes us feel peaceful. When we have no routines, no systems, and no structure, we’ll be left feeling drained, worn thin, and not knowing which way is up. You (and your kids!) need to know what’s expected, what you have to look forward to, and what’s coming up next. These routines don’t need to be time-consuming or complicated, but they do need to be consistent. Here’s our best advice for simplifying your routines:
- Establish routines for household chores. What one chore always seems daunting, no matter how well you try and stat on top of it? We’re willing to bet that for most of you, it’s the laundry (especially if you have little ones at home). We’ve found that the best routine for laundry is to do one small load everyday. As soon as you wake up, throw a load of clothes in from the day before. Move it and get it processed throughout the day, and then fold it at night before bed. Figure out what works for you. If laundry isn’t your biggest issue, identify what it is, and come up with a routine that will help you stay on top of it throughout the week.
- Decide who does what. Give everyone a job. When we know what’s expected of us, we can take ownership of those things and practice them on a regular basis. Write down all of the chores that need to be done on a regular basis, and start dividing them up. Choose ones that you know you can accomplish (and might even enjoy doing), and let everyone else do the same.
- Create simple traditions. This step might be the most important of all, and the one that will help bring the most stability and rest into your home. Establish simple traditions with your family that you can all look forward to each week. Have pizza on Friday nights. Swim in the pool on Saturday afternoons. Bake cinnamon rolls together every Sunday morning. Whatever it is, create traditions and don’t stray from them. There’s something about knowing that something is going to happen that will make your family feel loved, happy, and taken care of.