SYL Week 14: Time Management & Planning
OK so time management is not my forte (completing week 14 challenge in week 17!) Funnily, I am completing challenges in bursts, as I do most tasks 🙂 Anyway, I digress… I am catching up on Simplify Your Life challenges and this one has come at the perfect time for me. Interesting when different areas of your life collide…
I’ve been dealing with a few behaviour issues at home this week. We had a fantastic Easter holiday break- but instead of leaving us fresh and re-energised, we have all started the new term tired and less tolerant of eachother. This challenge is perfect as I think Time Management could be the key to improving our family relationships and behaviour.
Two things from the Week 14 post stand out for me.
1. Focus on what’s important
2. What practices give me the best return on energy?
First: What’s important to me is living happily with my partner and kids. Obviously poor behaviour from the children, squabbles & tantrums drain energy and happiness from our whole family.
There are things I can put in place to reduce their tiredness and improve their behaviour such as keeping routine, enforcing earlier bedtime, being more consistent and dealing with conflict as it arises. But I think a HUGE factor is the time we spend with our children. We had a bunch of fun on the holidays and behaviour was much better- we were all relaxed and enjoying each other’s company. Suddenly school is back and we’re all thrust into routine and busy-ness; and spare time is spent veging out in front of the tv or annoying eachother.
So right now, it’s important for me to spend quality time with each of my kids. Half an hour of game time on the floor, or a half-hour walk with one of them after school is not a big ask, but it is something that I feel will greatly improve our relationships and behaviour with eachother. And because it is important to me, I will plan my time and make it part of our daily routine.
Second: Best return on energy…
I’ve made two small changes to simplify daily tasks and I can’t emphasise how much they’ve improved our time management and home routine! I recently installed a white board in my pantry. I love it. On one side I have a running shopping list and add things when I think of them. On the other side, I meal plan for the week. This has been a gem & I find meals are more relaxed, we eat less take out and we eat healthier for it. If the kids want to know what we’re having for dinner, they go and look! No more dreaded “What’s for dinner” whinges! Dinners run smoothly and are more time efficient. If only you knew how much time I used to spend dwelling on what to have for dinner only to end up ordering last-minute take-out.
The other time-saver I am employing is the evening tidy-up. I empty the dishwasher, tidy the table and lounge room floor. Our mornings run smoother and I am happier waking to clear spaces! Two little changes that save me loads of energy and make family life smoother and happier 🙂
NEXT: So for the next six weeks, my goal is to ‘book in’ walks and game time with my kids, and to continue the evening tidy-up. I feel the hard core cleaning is easy but maintaining a little each day is much harder! Using the calendar for birthdays/ appointments/ school reminders works well for us, but I feel I could add other important family time to make sure it happens. Hopefully we’ll ALL see better behaviour, easier house managment and a lift in mood!
Do you have any tips for improving kids behaviour or any short-cuts that give you more value for your energy? Love to hear your thoughts!