One of the biggest conflicts between parents and children of any age is to keep their room clean. It’s exhausting and demoralizing for all parties involved. So, what if there were a way you could painlessly teach your children to get into good habits at an early age? It’s going to require some big changes, but I think it can definitely be done, and I think it would be absolutely worth it.
1. Calm down their environment
Kids have SO many clothes, toys, and just “noise” in their lives these days. It’s no wonder they are on constant overwhelm. Too many activities, too much access to technology, too much stuff overflowing their rooms and play spaces. It would be too much for a NASA Scientist to keep it all organized! Look for ways you can calm down their environment and help them keep their room clean:
- Limit technology time to a bare minimum
- Cut back on play dates as well as music and sports programs after school. The schedules for sports participation are just crazy these days. 3, 4, even 5 times a week, it really is ridiculous the amount of commitment required. Performing arts are just as crazy.
- Limit them to 2 weeks of outfits – including some dress up items, and a few grungy things and donate the rest. It seems like a strange thing to do in our culture, but it’s so hard for kids to manage 50 different outfits.
- If possible remove toys to a separate play area, and cut them back by at least 25%. You don’t have to get rid of the toys. But you can box them up in a garage or storage area and rotate them every few months. Then it’s like having all new toys. When they are not so overwhelmed by choices, they will actually PLAY with the toys they do have.
- Encourage outside time every day. Take walks around the neighborhood with them. Get them to the park, and encourage them to play out in the yard. There have been so many studies that prove outside time is calming and beneficial to their overall health.
- Build in a little quiet time – even if it’s just 15 minutes of reading, or just sitting on a porch swing and talking. I’ll bet only 1 kid in 100 gets time like that on a daily basis. It’s probably nice for Mom and Dad too!
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