For parents, it’s a challenge to carve out quality time with children with work, school, and other responsibilities. These early years fly by, and you want to be able to savor every moment that you can with your little ones.
Struggling to find a balance is something every parent can relate to. Here are some ideas to help you work toward that essential work-life balance so you can squeeze more out of your time together.
Prioritize Your Schedule
Schedule time with your children and set aside responsibilities that can be put off. Ask yourself, are there tasks you can get done after your child goes to bed? Can you respond to that email/call later? Can those dirty dishes wait in the sink until your children are tucked in?
Share the Work Load
Encourage children to begin helping with household tasks in the evening, such as setting the table, making dinner, or loading the dishwasher. They’re helping the family, interacting with you, and learning responsibility.
Or, make grocery trips a family affair! Not only can your children help you determine what groceries you need to get, but the store is a great place to implement some of what they’re learning in school, like counting or identifying colors.
Time saved on tasks or household chores is time you can spend doing other family activities.
Build Quality Time Into Your Schedule
Spending quality time with family members can be as simple as turning off the TV, computers and cell phones at least once a week. Or, make an effort to have dinner together every night to discuss their day and what they learned. Encourage conversation and give children your full attention. Other ideas for a family night include playing board games, completing puzzles or making special meals together; both are excellent ways for everyone to interact in a fun and positive way.
If night time isn’t a possibility, add some wiggle room to your morning routine! Make breakfast a time when you can laugh and connect. The weekends are perfect for scheduling downtime too.
You can also find quality time in activities you already do together. It can be as simple as playing games in the car on the way to preschool. Look for opportunities where you already spend time together. Rather than going through the motions, take the time to enjoy those moments.
Learn to Say ‘No’
Learn to say “no” to projects and events that cut into your family time, or find a way that you can do them as a family. Set the example for your children by setting boundaries at work and social activities. Understandably, you won’t be able to say “no” to everything, but simplify where you can.
Remember, parenthood is a balancing act. Try some of these ideas to maximize your time at home. At U-GRO Learning Centres, we love to be a resource for our families as they grow and adjust to new life experiences. Stay tuned to our blog for more tips and ideas to help you make the most of your family time!