Morning routines can create stress in a family. Time pressures and moods can evolve into an emotional storm, with voices rising and good-bye hugs forgotten. Who wants to start the day like that? As a parent, you can help mornings move along more smoothly by planning, organizing, and also engaging each member of the family. Here are some ideas for setting a positive tone for the day:

  • Have a bedtime conversation about the next morning’s routine because doing this can set a mental plan in place. In the morning, be sure to allow a few extra minutes for each routine or unique activity as a way to take into account the unexpected.
  • Call for a family meeting to brainstorm possible solutions if certain chronic triggers create problems in the morning. Get your kids to join in the process so they feel they are part of the solution.
  • Move part of the morning routine to the night before. Activities such as making lunches or organizing backpacks can often be accomplished before bedtime.
  • Look for ways your kids can feel helpful independently. Maybe they can do a few chores on their own, which will give them a sense of responsibility and can lessen some time pressure during the morning routine. Sometimes kids like checklists or chore cards for the responsibilities they are given.

The whole family benefits when each day starts off with the necessary things getting done on time and kisses and hugs being shared.