Lots of time off and a lack of routine can take its toll on the whole family. This can include increased levels of stress and conflict in the home.
Summertime is upon us. Busy school mornings have been replaced with lazier starts to the day and you are welcoming the idea of life moving at a slower pace for a little while.
Like so many families, you are probably looking forward to spending more time with the kids and enjoying some family days out while they are off school. You want to give your children a summer to remember and create some special memories as a family.
You would also like to do it with minimal amounts of bickering and conflict. All of this time off and a lack of routine can take its toll on the whole family. It can lead to increased levels of stress and conflict which can really put a strain on family life in general.
We are confident that the following tips and tricks should help you to limit conflict in your home this summer:
- Remember that boundaries are still important. Having a more relaxed approach to screen time and bed-times can have an adverse effect on the kids. Too much screen time can lead to increased levels of aggression and sleep difficulties, which can lead to more conflict in the family.
- Sleep is just as important during the summer. A full night’s sleep is vital for your child all year round. During the school holidays, it is tempting to become very relaxed about bed-times and while this is expected to a certain extent it is important to keep your eye on the ball. A lack of quality sleep can have a huge impact on a child’s energy levels and mood which can lead to conflict.
- Encourage outdoor play as much as possible. Spending time outdoors will help your children sleep better and improve their mood and general well-being. When a child spends too much time indoors it generally equates to more screen time and junk food and both of these things can increase conflict levels.
- Try to find balance. Family days out are great as they give everyone something to look forward to and encourage quality time. However, the kids will crave a certain amount of “doing nothing” to simply enjoy their toys and gadgets a little more than they can during term time.
- Limit the number of treats on offer as they have a huge affect on a child’s mood. High levels of sugar can lead to a crash later in the day as well as a feeling of laziness and lethargy.
- Know when to get involved. Sometimes a scenario of conflict will benefit from a parent intervening but often it fuels the fire. When a parent gets involved, it can add another dynamic to the conflict as it often appears as though a person’s side is being taken.
- Try to spend time with each child individually. This can be difficult during the daily chaos, but children crave that special one-on-one time with their parents. Without it, they may be more prone to conflict with you or their siblings.
- Reward good behaviour as often as possible. Kids thrive on praise and will be more likely to repeat that behaviour when it has been noticed.