Due to the demands of social distancing, we have seen schools close across the country and family homes are becoming the heart of our daily lives, as they turn into classrooms, daycares and workplaces. For many parents, spending more time with their children in tight, constant neighborhoods has increased stress and conflict.
According to a recent study, 25% of parents have reported more conflicts with their children since their forties. Taking advantage of this time and setting clear rules and limits can help alleviate this stress and conflict, and make this time at home more enjoyable for the whole family.
Set a daily schedule
Ensuring an appropriate routine for you and your children can help make your day more productive while keeping your children busy and on track. Discuss with your children why they are staying at home right now and have them create a daily family schedule. Be sure to post the schedule somewhere where the whole family can see it, whether on the refrigerator or on the household bulletin board.
Having a set time to wake up, eat breakfast, and work at school will help maintain the structure of your children’s lives during this time. When creating the schedule, be sure to include breaks from work and schoolwork to relax and connect with the family. Set aside time for breaks throughout the day and fill them with physical activity, preferably outside with a bit of fresh air and sun, if you can do this while practicing social distancing. Plan meal times with healthy, nutritious breakfasts and end the day with normal bedtime routines.
If you work from home, it may also be a good idea to discuss times when you are not available with your children and spouse. Set aside a separate workstation and let people know that this area is only for this use.
Communicate with your children
Most children do not understand the dangers and the extent of the pandemic and are probably confused as to why the whole world is closing in on them. They can get bored with the same routine at home and not be able to play with their friends. Chat with your children and answer any questions they may have to help them relax. Remember, although it can be a daunting time as an adult, not knowing what is going on can scare children.
Avoid spreading information all day. If your children are listening to the news, talk about what they hear and correct any false information or rumor you may hear. If you are unsure of the exact current titles, visit the CDC website to verify the information. Also take this time to discuss positive stories in the news and answer any questions they may have.
One in five parents reported an increase in screaming to their children since the pandemic was declared and 52% said that financial problems had affected their parenting. If you lose your temper and talk to your child, which can likely happen with increased stress, apologize. Parents can say, “I’m sorry I was mean to you. It had nothing to do with you, and I apologize. “By communicating with your children as mature equals, you are helping them learn to repair relationships and communicate clearly.
The screen time limits you may have had before the pandemic probably need to be adjusted. While limits are always important, it is essential to understand that the circumstances are different now. Use this time to help your child get the most out of technology through home schooling and other online educational opportunities.
If your child does not already have home school materials provided by their school, contact teachers about educational activities they can do online and offline. There are also online resources like Storyline Online, where kids can stream videos featuring actors reading children’s books, and Busy Toddler, which provides simple educational activities to do with your kid, which are a great way. transform the time spent on the screen into learning time. Common Sense Media is another great outlet for home learning opportunities and offers attractive apps, websites and video games.
Although your children cannot connect face to face with their classmates and family members, they can use their screen time to socialize. Set up a virtual play date for your child or set up a FaceTime call with the grandparents so they can stay in touch and interact with someone outside the home.
Technology can be very beneficial during this time to help children learn and stay connected, but it is always important to set limits and allow time for sleep, family ties, reading, learning and learning. ‘physical activity. Sit down with your kids and prepare a family media plan to determine how long they can play online and where their devices will charge at night.
Schedule time for yourself
It is unusual to spend so much time with your family in the same shared space. As a parent, it is important to allow time for personal care. Whether it involves finding a quiet place in the house to have a cup of coffee each morning, locking yourself in the bathroom for ten minutes, or running a errand before the family ends, step back to give yourself a break. break from stress.
While following your daily routine may seem of utmost importance right now, stay flexible and don’t be too hard on yourself. Your kids may have more time on the screen and you may feel more and more overwhelmed, but remember that you don’t have to be the perfect parent right now, these times are unprecedented and all the world, including yourself, is working to do its best with the current situation.
Overall, well-being as a provider and caregiver should be at the top of your priority list during this time of isolation. Give yourself grace if you feel depressed and try to exercise compassion. Be thankful and work to recognize the positive things about your situation, like spending more time with your family, but don’t neglect how you feel, as these times are difficult and stressful.
While orders to stay at home can increase family time and stress, remember to take it alone and stay positive. It will not last forever and your children will likely experience the same range of emotions and confusion during this time. Planning a flexible daily schedule properly, communicating with your children, adjusting previous rules and taking care of yourself will help keep your whole family mental health as you go through these difficult times.