Time out for parents

photo 3Effective time management skills are helpful to all adults and children.  These skills are especially beneficial for busy families and critical for those with children who have attention and organizational issues. Day-to-day demands become overwhelming. By managing your time wisely and modeling that for your children, you and your family can make it through the day less stressed and less overwhelmed.

1.    Build in time for yourself  

  • Exercise, meditate, or establish quiet time.
  • A 15 to 30 minute break, with no interruptions, will help you rejuvenate and transition into the home routine.  This is NOT a time waster, this in indeed a time saver, a lifesaver!
  • Teach your children the benefit of quiet time by modeling it for them.

2.    Start a journal

  • Carry it with you during the day.  Make notes of ideas and items you must do and those things you want to do.  Take advantage of time on Metro, waiting time for medical appointments or meetings. If you don’t like to carry paper journals, use the notes app on your SmartPhone.
  • Use it before you go to sleep. Making notes at night reduces the stress and worry of “will I remember to do that tomorrow”?

3.      Learn to say “NO”

  • Review priorities to avoid the trap of doing just “one more thing” before the priority task at hand.
  • Do not overschedule your time. Use the suggestions for your day planner and make time for yourself.

4.     Share the load

  • Give responsibilities to all family members – share the load of work at home. This teaches responsibility cooperation and pride in accomplishment.
  • Set limits on TV time, video and computer time.  Use timers and hold the children accountable for their compliance. Ask siblings to help as needed.
  • When scheduling bedtime, be sure your children figure out how long it takes to get ready: including bath/shower time, choosing clothes for next day, backpack ready and by the door.
  • Schedule weekly or bi-weekly family meetings to check in on your progress and share successes.  Review your calendars and update the family calendar at this time.

Jodi Sleeper-Triplett, MCC, SCAC, BCC
Social Media: LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube
Author: Empowering Youth with ADHD