Dave and Rhonda are headed to his parent’s house for a two-week vacation. His parents are very energetic and love to schedule lots of activities. Since Dave and Rhonda run what they call a “laid-back” home, they are a bit worried about the effect that will have on their children. Here are four key elements to consider:
Keep your routines (if you can)
Don’t forget that most youngsters like the security of familiar routines. When the pace of their regular day picks up, kids can get feel chaotic and uncertain about what’s next. Communicate your concerns directly to your parents and do what you can to keep your little tyke on his schedule. At the same time, don’t get worried or impatient if he gets hyped-out or irritable.
Keep it simple and plan one big event per day (if you can)
When kids and parents zip from one event to another, it can drain your energy, destroy your peace, and steal your joy. Traveling from one event to another can escalate stress. Otherwise, kids and parents tend to get cranky. So keep it simple and plan less rather than more. The goal is to not need a vacation from the vacation you just took.
Schedule in some down time to decompress each day
Talk to your partner and figure out what “charges” your batteries. A quiet walk, watching the sun set, some down time in the hot tub, a good book, or a nap on the beach under the shade of a palm tree might be just what the doctor ordered.
Be sure to “check in” after the lights go out
Once the lights are shut off, it’s time to take a brief moment, rub your little one’s back and chat briefly about the day. Consider asking what the favorite and worst part of the day was. Also, chat about what they’re looking forward to tomorrow. Doing so will give you access to the inner conflict they face that is just outside of your awareness. Don’t jump in and solve the conflict. Instead, slow down and listen (really listen) to what the struggle is about. The goal is to hear your child, not solve the alleged problem. Teach your little one how to identify and promote his troubled feelings.
A Point To Ponder
Doing each of these activities ensures that you are plugged in, current, and up-to-date with your child’s developmental needs. In other words, each of these simple tasks help you become and remain an In Touch Parent.
Author: Steve Cuffari For many, Steve Cuffari is the mentor that parents call on to make their parenting style warmer, easier and more affective. He is the founder of inTouch Parenting, a company devoted to helping today's parents calm the chaos, raise emotionally intelligent kids, and nurture families that thrive. read more about Steve Cuffari here...