Have you considered yet that the days ahead might represent one of the most spectacular opportunities of our lives?
I am not making light of the difficult situation facing families, especially families who have vulnerable people. I am noting that each day represents a gift that we have been given, and the days ahead look different.
One of the things that parents and teachers know about young people is that routines are important. It turns out, routines are important for all people. They provide a rhythm to the day, make life predictable and ensure that we are getting the attention, nutrition and rest that we need.
In this time of uncertainty, it is most important to maintain the structures and habits that work, but it is also an amazing opportunity to build new routines that help you design the experience that your family needs. Humans feel safe when they know what to expect and feel secure within their environment. This safety and security fosters healthy brain development and social-emotional growth in our young people.
I am told by our old people that in the time when we managed our own lives – there was a predictable rhythm and flow to the day. This rhythm and flow was coupled with consistent expectations and clearly defined roles which were modeled for our young people. Our lives in those times required a great deal more work to maintain and yet it worked seamlessly. So how do we bring these teachings into today?
- Sit down with your family and discuss your values. Decide which learnings, customs and activities should be prioritized and habitualized in daily routines. Curate the life you will be excited to wake-up to everyday.
- Create a loose schedule with choices that reflect your prioritized family values. Choice provides a sense of control along with reminding people that they are valued.
- Build in time when you work together, as a family unit on common projects and other relevant tasks that make up part of the realities of living in today’s world. Meals, cleaning and regular home maintenance are things that have to be modeled to be learned, what a great time to talk through new innovative approaches.
Every act that we engage in now will mature as lived experience later. This is the most powerful opportunity that we have been given in our lifetimes. Do you. Mindfully. With care and love.