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I recently started making one tiny change in my home that is making a huge impact. Whether you work out of the home like me, or you’re a stay at home mom, this can work for you too. We’ve started doing mandatory clean up time before bed. Just before the kids go get ready for bed, everyone takes ten minutes to do a quick clean up. I set a timer, and we all clean up for 10 minutes at the exact same time. The timer, and the fact that everyone is doing it all at the same time is a good motivator for the kids to work hard for those 10 minutes.
We usually use this time to do things like pick up the living room or bedrooms, water the plants outside, sweep, vacuum, and finish up a few dishes if needed. If those things are already done, we can do other deeper cleaning things like the bathrooms, dusting, etc. You’ll be amazed at how much you can get done in such a short amount of time when you’re all working together. It feels amazing to be able to go to bed with a picked up home. And, the more we do this consistently, the bigger impact it is going to have. That means less cleaning at other times of the day, and the ability to maintain a tidy home the majority of the time.
I’ve decided, and informed the rest of the family, that this is something we’re going to stick to pretty strictly. Even if we’re out late some nights, it won’t hurt anyone’s sleep to take that 10 minutes to clean up before going to bed. If you have toddlers, you might consider doing this with your little ones, helping them pick up their toys and things they are able, and then do it again yourself just before you go to bed when you can be more productive in what you get done.
Viviana owns Aplus_academics and talks about how she is helping her sons stop saying the “f” word, FORGOT.
My son uses the “F” word, and it drives me crazy!!! That’s right “FORGOT”. Did I already say It absolutely drives me CRAZY? However, I have figured out a way to help him reduce the number of times he uses the “F” word (FORGOT). My ultimate goal for my two sons is for them to communicate well and have healthy relationships.
My sons are 10 and 15, they both have the same parents, same upbringings, different personalities, but now from divorced parents. A divorce is a devastating event that unfortunately some of us have to endure. The good thing is that we can make lemonade out of lemons. Of course, easier said than done! But I’ve done it. I have raw conversations with my sons about life, about the divorce, and about me.
I grew up as an only child and without my dad, so having boys has taught me that they process differently and respond differently. A friend once said, “boys & men respond to pain and consequence”. As this may be true, I have incorporated some very effective strategies to improve communication in my home.
These strategies improve communication, and in turn, have reduced the “forgot” word as well, because we focus more on the tasks that need attention. #1 I ensure we make “EYE CONTACT” when we speak. They may look away but I stop talking until we are both looking at each other. #2 The rule is “Take care of business first”. Business in my home means cleaning their room, bathroom, kitchen, and living room. We have also defined what “CLEAN” means. Clean, in my home, means to ensure everything is off the floor and where it belongs, wiping down all flat surfaces, and sweeping the floors. #3 After the business has been taken care of they can have free time. This took some time to establish, especially after my separation, so as moms we have to be consistent and not turn our disagreements into fighting matches.
In my profession, I come in contact with many parents, married, and single that have similar struggles with their sons. The common word with boys is “I FORGOT”. That’s why I call it the F word. Our home isn’t perfect, but we do work on communication on a daily basis. I tell my children that I am not perfect, but I do put 100% effort into what I do. As parents we have to lead by example, our children are watching us more than listening to us. Before we reprimand them let’s look at ourselves first.