Maybe, former procrastinators, the idea of establishing a routine is overwhelming. You can do it! Begin with the morning tasks before leaving for school or work. What is the priority? Leave the house with margin so you aren’t running for the bus stop or catching every red light. (We know that happens.)
Write down your target time of departure, allowing extra minutes to avoid rushing the drive. What things do you need to do before leaving?
Try this. Make a list in no order, just jot down everything that comes to mind.
Look over the tasks for anything that can be omitted. (Watering plants)
Note major tasks that merit special attention. (Does your husband need to leave before the kids do?)
Group tasks that fit together. (Make coffee, stretch, have devotions. Or, dress toddler, supervise others’ bed making)
Relist tasks in the order they should best occur.
What time should you eat breakfast to avoid rushing?
Reexamine the list to see what tasks could be simplified or assigned to another time of day. (Make or partially make lunches the night before. Load backpacks and brief cases and place by the door the night before – along with shoes. Lay out clothes the night before.)
Follow the same approach for evening. Dinner, baths, teeth brushing, family reading, etc. Revise and adapt to suit you and your family. Give it a try. Post your list so it’s available for reference.
Is this a lot of work? Yes, at first. Aren’t you doing a lot of work now? Frustration builds with lack of routine. Have patience as you try a new approach. Try things before you rule them out; some “undoable” things may surprise you. Children will cooperate when they know what to do, how, and when. They also like peace and order – and getting to school with margin.
Big tip: Start trying this before school starts, so you smooth out rough spots ahead of time.
What’s your morning list? Your evening list?