Through the Lens of a Life Skills Coach, Wife, and Mother
Finding Your Flow: A Smooth Sailing Transition Back to Routine
By Kimberly Staley
Image by Daniel Büscher from Pixabay.
We’ve been out of the usual routines for a while now, a long while! As the seasons shift, weather changes, and kids begin school, it’s time to look ahead and settle back into some routines. I know, this may create a bit of anxiety to some. Especially after these long months of quarantine and this unusual summer, but with a bit of planning a smooth transition back into routines is possible. In fact, you just might find yourself looking forward to it.
To give you a bit of motivation let me remind you of a FEW of the benefits of having a routine. A range of studies have shown “having ordered and predictable routines is central to children’s healthy development.” (Fiese, 2006) Routines can also reduce anxieties and help encourage optimism towards new situations. Not only that, people who follow a routine usually have more free time for creativity and personal pursuits because they aren’t caught up in a list of never ending to do’s without enough time.
If any of those benefits sound desirable to you then you then keep reading to find out how to make the transition back to a routine. The key to success is to go at your pace. Take each step one at a time. Some will move through the steps one after another and be on their way, others may want to spend time moving through and building each step over a few day’s-time. Either way will work, take it at the pace that works for you.
Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay
Image by StockSnap from Pixabay
Image by Amanda Randolph from Pixabay
Image by congerdesign from Pixabay.
Fiese, B.H. (2006). Family routines and rituals. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press
Emotions are a big part of life! Problem is they are kind of tricky for kids. This is why they need you to be their coach! We often teach our kids rules and what is right or wrong, but sometimes big emotions derail their best intentions. Not only this big emotions unmanaged can get in the way of other important development.
According to Dr. John Gottman, a child's cognitive development is connected to emotional well-being. "The way a child connects to their parent emotionally can skyrocket their intelligence if the emotional security is there." So this is important stuff! Every child needs to be LISTENED to, VALIDATED, and RESPECTED.
Dr. Gottman gave 5 steps to help you coach your child through emotions. They are:
1. NOTICE your child's emotions
2. Help them to feel UNDERSTOOD
3. Help them LABEL what they feel. (They don't have the word bank to do this.)
4. UNDERSTAND them.
5. Limit behaviors if needed.
Relationships and emotional connection are the foundation for learning. It is critical to give respect when we are under stress. In this way we build a secure relationship that will ensure connectivity with our child so they can develop healthy habits and relationships.
To watch a video introduction on this critical principle see HERE.
Gottman, John. (2014, May 17). Emotion Coaching: The Heart of Parenting - The Gottman Institute. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/v0vj9Z4kpEk
Welcome to Paradigm Life Skills. I am Kimberly Staley, author of this blog, and owner of Paradigm Life Skills.
The blog portion of this website is a space designed for a more laid back approach to my musings over principles and perspectives. I share my own real life experiences in an effort to connect with you as a reader on a human level. My hope is that by sharing in this way, certain experiences or principles will resonate with you, connections will be made, and learning will be accelerated.
I believe in principle based living. When we adhere to good principles, it makes each, choice filled, day easier to navigate. For instance, if we chose to live the principle of honesty, then we don't have to choose to whether or not to be honest in every specific action throughout the day. We would have already made that choice by choosing to adhere to the principle. Likewise, if we fill our life with any good principle of living, it will help us on our journey. You will find on this blog I try to connect a principle with every experience I share.
Many of my posts will be related to family management and home life due to the volume of inquires I receive about these things. As parents, we look to others for advice in hopes to fill the void of a parenting handbook. It is wise, there is much we can learn from those who have traveled the road before us, or who are traveling with us. I too, seek advise for every passing stage of parenting, marriage, and life in general. They are all full of unexpected adventures!
I am a life long learner. I study and search whether in formal school or not because I love to learn. I am currently pursuing my life goal to get my degree. It is in Marriage and Family Studies through Brigham Young University - Idaho. I put schooling aside while I my children were small and my husband finished his schooling but I never quit studying. Part of my continued learning was an educational investment to become a certified life coach. This has encouraged me to continue sharing principles through individual coaching, teaching workshops, and presenting principles of emotional well-being as a speaker.
In the end, my hope is that you will find something of worth to you through these reflections. I believe we all have something to share that will lift and help others, just as we all have need to learn from one another. Some of our greatest education comes as we connect to the experiences of others.
May you find encouragement for your heart and abiding hope as you journey on!
We have a Uni-cyclist at our house! This unique talent has had to be developed over a LONG period of time. It is still a wonder to me to watch him climb up on that single wheel and head off into the sunset like it's nothing. The amazing thing about uni-cycling is it takes constant awareness and adjustment to balance. Momentum actually makes balance possible. That 's EXACTLY what parenthood is! We never have it all figured out because it is ever-changing and constantly moving forward. That is what makes it beautiful.
If ever I needed to understand the delicate balance of parenting, it is now! Everyone's independent schedules require constant vigilance from me as a mother as to what they need (and don't need) from me. My oldest is independent, he left this morning at 5:30 a.m. I don't remember saying goodbye today, although I know I did just like I always do on his early days. My 2nd oldest had practice until 10 p.m. last night and then homework still. He is also independent but still appreciates the mom presence in the morning. Then there are the twins, they are thriving in their earlier schedule for middle school. As long as I am visible they keep moving at just the right speed. Then there are my little elementary kids, I wake them up about the time everyone else is heading out the door. We saunter together through their predictable morning routine before they head to the bus stop.
This schedule is stark difference to the past when I was shuffling six younger kids at the same time. We had to have a regimented flow to our chaos. (As much as that seems like an oxymoron- all you mom's with young children and babies know exactly what that means!) These days, we have to have 'Grab and Go' options for breakfast. I'm not braiding piggy tails and smoothing down "alfalfa's" times four. Even our family morning prayer often happen in what we call "popcorn prayers". (A prayer with this child, then a prayer with these two as we drive down the road!) The regimented chaos has given way to their own individual routines.
Since my younger kids see these patterns of independence from the older kids, they want to be independent like them and often do things on their own at much younger ages! That throws me off even more. So needless to say it isn't always clear where my kids need me most. Like a uni-cyclist, I have to be aware and moving to keep up this balance of parenthood. It's a horrible feeling to realize I have been standing over my children when they are trying to ride themselves. As is the opposite, of realizing I've overlooked my little ones who are just waiting for a steady hand of balance through words of encouragement... thankfully my kids are forgiving, patient, and resilient. As they are learning and growing so am I,still learning how to balance through every new stage of parenthood.
Kimberly Staley is a married, mother of six, in a home filled with adventure. She is a certified life coach whose passion in life has been to ease suffering borne out of disappointments and discouragements that come with life. She has coached individuals and taught classes on various life skills including: organization, family and home management, time management, communication, and emotional resiliency for the past 12 years. Kimberly is a student of continual learning. She has studied human behavior and social-emotional development. She is currently working toward her degree in Marriage and Family Studies through Brigham Young University – Idaho.