Much has been written about the benefits of routines, especially for children. But that doesn’t mean that the same sorts of routines suit everyone. Some people feel safer with a rigid routine that’s followed daily. Others find this stifles their creativity and prefer more freedom. But all of us will have routines to some extent. But we’re going to explore three routines that can be particularly beneficial for families. That’s not to say that all of these are right for everyone – but take a look and see which could reduce stress and friction in your household.
The Bedtime Routine
From the moment a baby is born, there can be a huge amount of focus on establishing a bedtime routine to help teach them to sleep. Things such as bath time and a story can be calming signals for your child to switch their brains from wide awake to a calmer and sleepier pattern of brain waves.
But how often do we set a bedtime routine for ourselves? It can be easy to slip into watching one more Netflix episode of your favourite show, or to try and squeeze out a final hour of work before heading to bed. Bedtime routines can work for adults in the same way they can for young children. If you’re struggling to sleep or feel exhausted each day, consider how you can create a bedtime routine that you can follow.
If you’re a mumpreneur, you’ll probably heard a lot of talk about a morning routine that will set you up for success. These have usually been created by those without children, or men who are not trying to get their children ready in the morning!
But it is the morning that can often have the most stress points for families, especially if needing to get out the door on time for nursery, school, or work. Think about those moments when you’ve felt like exploding. What are the flashpoints? Where does the stress come from? Once you’ve identified these, you can find solutions that you can add to your routine. This could very well start the night before, for example, with getting bags, lunches and coats set out ready.
And again, it’s not just the children that can benefit from this but the adults too.
Uh-oh, I can hear people freaking out already. If there’s one area of our lives that we either lack a routine or let it slip, then I’m pretty sure it would be this one. As mums and mumpreneurs, we quite rightly have a reputation of putting everyone else first. But for a family to be harmonious, it’s important that everyone has an opportunity to ‘fill their cup’.
The only way to make sure this happens, is to make it a part of the family routine. Just as children’s activities are scheduled, you and your partner need to take time for your own too. By making it a part of your daily or weekly routine, you’re more likely to actually do it!
There are of course, many other areas in which you might want to introduce a routine. But before you do so, think about what will and won’t benefit your family. Routines are there to support you and make life easier, not to cause more problems. Don’t be tempted to ‘follow the crowd’ and instead, focus on what’s best for you and your family. Let me know below what routines work best for you.
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