Getting out the door: Back to school chaos!

SnapseedBack to school and back to the morning battle, and one of THE parenting questions I get asked: how do I get my children out of the door – on-time?

As soon as playgroup started, the battles started in our household around the front door. I found that I lost my temper. Frequently. And at high volume!

All types of thoughts crossed my mind: “Why can’t she see this is important, and we must leave”; “Doesn’t she know the bus won’t wait?”; “Why can’t she put her own shoes on?”; “Really? This again?“.

There are two powerful themes in the mix here:
1. Development.
What, truly, should be possible for your child to do, and what is a leap too far? A child of up to 5/6 will not understand that running back inside for their toy is not more important than catching the bus. No amount if careful explaining will help. If they are not getting it yet; they are not getting it yet and no amount of wishful thinking will change that (or them!).

2. The only person winding you up is: YOU (sorry!).
You, at some point, made up a whole lot of stories about time: being on time, being late, running out of time…. When faced with the battle to get out of the door, your mind starts running a tape of all these stories. Then the “it shouldn’t have to be like this” story starts. No wonder you get stress at this point!

Dump the stress by facing reality: stressful thinking is going to make getting out the door a daily visit to hell. Ignore the stories in your head and focus on getting those shoes on. A clear head doesn’t create drama; leave that to your child.

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