189. Time Management Series #10: Specific Topic (Agreed Upon Family Time)
Last week we looked at scheduling Saturdays and Sundays (weekends)
This week, we will look at the specific topic of Agreed Upon Family Time.
This item, I cannot over emphasise, needs your full commitment in order to establish a backbone of relationship development with your family, i.e. your spouse, and if you have kids, with your kids as well.
There are 2 portions I dedicate to fixed schedules of family time, one during weekdays and one during weekends.
Let me break it down:
A. Weekday slots (evening/night)
1. For the weekdays, depending on your and your children’s availability or out of necessity, schedule 2 slots of 1 hour each.
2. The first slot is more serious and formal:
Converse with your kids
Find out how was their school day, or week that has passed
Listen to them: their ups and downs, challenges, how they overcame them, any that they will need your help to overcome
Any difficult areas in their studies that you can help
Any issues with their friends, etc
3. The second slot can be more relaxed, spend this time together doing stuff, building memories:
Make a simple meal together
Play a board game together
Watch a short movie together
Do a hobby together: art and craft, a sport, etc
B. Weekend slots
1. For the weekend, set aside a session on Saturday and if you can, on Sunday as well
2. The first slot also can be more serious or formal
Doing homework together
Planning something with the family as a team: making a meal, going for a trip (once allowed and safe), etc
Washing the car together
3. The second slot can be more fun and restful
Go to the park for a walk, go swimming together
Read a storybook together
Share your week with each other, etc
Others you can think of
The main idea here is to lock in time with your family, and make sure everyone’s calendar is similarly blocked for this….. there should be no reason why any other priority you have during the week needs to overthrow these slots.
You may have work, you may have other plans, but nothing that cannot wait until these sessions are over.
If you don’t make time for your family to build it, there is no real point in doing anything else, in my opinion.
1. Make these sessions fun and memorable
2. Make everyone want to come back for the next planned session
3. Make full use of the 5 love languages here with your family members:
Quality Time – spend that time with them
Acts of Service – do stuff for them
Physical Touch – shower them with hugs and kisses
Receiving Gifts – give them stuff (need not be big and expensive)
Words of Affirmation – praise and encourage them, no need to criticise, belittle or demean them, they will get those from the world outside your home
4. It gets much easier once it becomes a routine…
Keep your pens and highlighters, we will move on next week….. see you then!