Mornings chaos in your home? You are not alone. You have no patience, everyone needs something and no one is really motivated to get out of the house. Every morning is different, some children are more independent and others need more help.

Tips to get out of the house on time:

  • Plan Ahead: Don’t fight fires. In the moment is not the time to create a plan and try to start a reward chart or new rule about no tablets at the time. How much time does each child need to get ready? How much time do you need to get ready?
  • Remove Distractions: Focus on eating and then they can play, watch the show or go outside. The goal is to show them what they need to prioritize and then they have the fun and reward of playing or going outside before they have to leave.
  • Give Them the Tools to Succeed:
    • Timers
    • Checklists
    • Reward charts
    • Get things ready the night before
  • What are the Barriers?: Children and teens have different values than we do. What is getting in the way of getting out of the door?
    • School isn’t fun for them, maybe they don’t have friends, or they have a personality conflict with the teacher for example.
    • Math is first and they don’t like math.
    • The playground is loud and chaotic in the morning and they don’t like it.
    • They are anxious about their test or hanging out with friends at recess.
    • They are unorganized and have no concept of time.
    • They are slow in the morning and don’t like to be rushed.

What Do They Need to Succeed?

There can be many different reasons why they struggle in the morning. You can’t always make it better or take away the teacher they don’t like for example, but you can talk about it (not in the morning). You see the behaviour or resistance in the morning, but what is underneath it? Ask them what would help. Build a structure and system that will help build independence. You shouldn’t be telling them what to do and reminding them of each step of the morning routine. This pattern is exhausting and sets up the expectation that they have to wait for an adult to prompt them to do the next task. They want to do well. They need your support. Let them know you are there for them. Validate their struggle and help them take one step forward to get out of the door, even if they are complaining the whole time. Notice the small degrees of change and effort.

Need More Support?

Not sure where to get started? This program can help. In 90 minutes you can have my top three tips to get your kids to listen!