Another post in our Time Management Series:
Families these days can be busy. It may seem there aren’t enough hours in the day to do all the things your family wants to do. If this is the case with your family, it might help to know that time management equals team work.
To be sure everyone is able to meet the obligations they have, it’s important that the family work together rather than having the parents doing the majority of the work. There’s an old Scottish proverb that says “Many hands make light work because it is but little to everyone.” This means everyone in the family needs to chip in to get necessary household chores done so everyone can benefit.
Here are some other time management ideas to consider when your day is hurried from the time you get up until it’s time to go to bed.
* Make a list of everything your family does on a regular basis (sports practices, band practices, scouting, meetings, religious observances if applicable, volunteering, etc.).
* Transfer those activities onto a master calendar so you can see how busy your schedule is.
* Prioritize which activities are most important and let go of some that may not be as important. Activities that are most important are those things that are non-negotiable: sleeping, working, school, travel time to and from. Next in priority are the things you have to do: eating, taking care of pets, self-care, and chores. Finally, think about the things you’d like to do.
* Remember not to schedule something every minute of the day. This is over scheduling and could ultimately result in family members being burned out to the point of exhaustion. You may want to reserve one day a week for your family to rest and recuperate from the past week before heading full-speed ahead into the next.
Now that you know what your priorities are, you’ll be better equipped to ensure everyone knows what’s expected of them and when. Don’t expect to have the entire time management system worked out and running smoothly right from the start. It will take practice until the family is comfortable working together so it might be best to keep expectations low.
Teaching your children to become responsible adults, including learning how to do household chores, may not be the easiest thing you do. However, you’re training them to take care of their own belongings, respect and care for the belongings of others, and support one another. You want them to learn to put others ahead of themselves and to be able to work together for the good of the entire family.
Create a chore chart which shows what everyone is expected to do to help out. If a family chore chart is too confusing, create a chart for each person in the family or prepare “to do” lists for each person. Having these physical charts allow each one to know what to do and ensures that everyone is pitching in.
Remind everyone that the quicker you get done with what needs to be done, the sooner you’ll be able to get to each activity so each person can start enjoying their time. When it comes to family dynamics and getting to places on time, time management equals team work, and vice versa.
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