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Life’s Crazy-Busy, So Let’s ‘T-I-M-E’ the Beastly Family Schedule

January 9, 2018     By Boys Town Contributor

Connecting with Kids, Mealtime, Parent-Child Relationships, Today's Family

Have you ever heard the saying about how kids spell the word love? If you have, then you know they spell it T I M E.

As a working parent, you probably know your children's emotional well-being depends on how much you are involved and connected with their lives. You drive them to dance class, coach their Little League teams, attend their band concerts, and shuttle them to school and jobs. And you do all of this while tending to your own never-ending to-do lists, like taking Buddy to the vet, mowing the yard, repairing the car, and caring for loved ones.

So many activities and commitments can leave everybody in constant motion, running every which way. And when you finally are together, you're rushed, stressed, and don't feel all that connected. How can you take a step back, breathe, and just relax so the time you do have with your kids is truly meaningful?

Start with better time management. The more you can improve how you manage your family's time, the more you can experience and enjoy quality time together.

Here are five ways to help you do that:

  1. Decide your family's top three things. As a family, pick the three things that are most important to all of you. You can help get your schedule under control by keeping track of the big picture.
  2. Keep an updated master family calendar to remind everyone of the main things and prevent chaos from creeping in.
  3. Learn to say no. Before taking on another commitment or project, look at your family calendar and decide whether you have the time. If it doesn't fit in your schedule, politely decline—and don't feel guilty.
  4. Hold regular family meetings at least once a week. Just 15 to 20 minutes a week can help everyone touch base and coordinate calendars to limit confusion and stress.
  5. Make time to eat together. Family mealtimes are a great opportunity to connect with each other after a long day. Schedule a time when you can sit down face-to-face to eat and relax.

You are the CEO of your family, and no one loves your kids more than you do. Setting priorities and slowing your pace keeps the "schedule beast" under control, giving you and your kids more quality time to enjoy life and each other. 

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