Teaching Your Children How To Own Their Time

Growing up we were taught to do what we were told. Usually, for good reasons that kids don’t always understand. It was no surprise that when I became an adult and had to figure out how to spend my time, it took me a little while to come up with a plan.

Right now I own my time by scheduling time to be alone each week by. I’ll take a class that interests me, and budget for a babysitter so my husband and I can get out of the house together.

By deciding how we own our time, we create an easier transition for our children to decide how to own their time as they get older.

  • Be the Example:

    • Instead of saying “mommy is going to run errands and will be back later”, let your children know what you are doing. If you’re with some friends because you want to nurture your friendships, let your child know this priority and that you will be ready to play when you return. We are their role models. If they know we do things for our own enjoyment and growth, they can see how important it is for them to do it in the future.
  • Ask them what they want to do with their free time

    • I always come up with things “I” think my son will enjoy. In reality, if he gets to choose he’ll love it just the same, and will learn that his opinion is valued. I might put an educational spin on his choice, but the foundation of the activity is his idea. Each month you could chat with your child about what they might want to try and see if it can be put in the family calendar.
  • Set up a morning and evening routine

    • By having a routine, children can learn to prioritize what’s important for them to do each day. They can see that while some parts are mandatory – like bathing, brushing teeth and hair, etc. – other parts, maybe reading a story, singing a song or a quick exercise, can be a personal part that they can incorporate because they want to.
  • Evaluate how you spend your time

    • We all go through seasons in life. Whether it’s the survival stages of having a newborn, potty training, teaching them how to read and write, or sending them off to school, we know that through these changes how we own our time will shift. The same goes for our kids. You may need to evaluate as a family what you want to spend your time on. I remember the conversation I had with my parents when I had to pick one sport over another because I didn’t have the time to commit school, sports, and family. A quick evaluation could even uncover some new hidden interests your child might have!

This article was written by our friend at www.mommifaceted.comRachel Pierre