Mornings with kids can suck! Getting them out the door can be hell. Here are four hacks that will help you replace struggle with joy and love.
I don’t know about how it is in your home, but often in my house, mornings can be quite disastrous. Trying to get my child out of bed and dressed and fed and out the door meanwhile, taking care of all our needs can be overwhelming and we can easily end up in a conflict or some rub that makes the beginning of the day really not fun.
The reality is as a kid, it’s hard to be ushered along. You just want to lie in bed. Instead, they’re being told to do this, that and the other. Of course they don’t go along with what we say.
Fortunately, my wife and I found four things that really help us have a better morning.
1st Key: Sleep
Make sure your child is getting enough sleep. If they’re waking up groggy, then they’re possibly not getting enough sleep. Support them to have an early enough bed time by providing a consistent routine that enables them to get to sleep. Then see if they can wake up in a more positive way. This doesn’t always work because we each have our own temperaments when it comes to sleep.
2nd Key: Space for Yourself
Give yourself enough space in the morning so that you can engage the day from a more positive place. If you’re waking up just before you wake your kids up and you’re groggy and tired, it adds to the propensity for it becoming a real mess as everybody’s bad feelings bump into each other. If you can give yourself ten minutes to just sit down on the couch, relax a little bit, think about your day, maybe get a couple things done before so that there isn’t as much to happen once your child is awake, it sets your morning up for a much more pleasant experience.
3rd & Most Important Key: Connect with your Kid
The most important thing you can do, is to take five minutes to really connect with the your child. Imagine what it’s like for them. They’re being ushered around all morning. They don’t want to go to school. They don’t want to get up. Yet, we’re pushing them. Tell them to do this, that and the other thing. Of course it ends up as a mess. If we can connect to them first, then we can move as an integrated unit. Maybe it’s cuddling with them. Maybe it’s sitting next to their bed and singing songs. Maybe it’s playing Legos. Do whatever they like so that they feel connected with you. These five minutes of special time allow you and your kid to feel good together. They feel connected and then they’ll move with you in a much more easeful way.
4th Step: Breakfast
Make the space to all sit down and eat together. Having a few non-rushed minutes where you can nourish your bodies together and talk about the day allows you all to move forward into the world feeling a part of the family, a part of something good. When you walk out the door, feeling that sense of warmth and connection rather than hurried and rushed and frustrated, it affects your whole day.
- Help your family have a joyful morning and not a rushed, anxious one.
- Take the time to make sure they’re getting enough sleep.
- Give yourself ten or fifteen minutes in the morning to find your own center, your own good place in yourself before you connect with them.
- Give your kid five minutes of real good connection time.
- All sit down at the breakfast table so you can all walk out the door feeling good and relaxed.
Thank you for joining me for another episode of Full Frontal Fatherhood. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject but let’s keep it friendly because this is hard stuff and we’re all doing our best.
If you liked the video, please share with your friends and I’ll see you next Friday for another episode of Full Frontal Fatherhood.