A Servant Named Mom

A mom recently told me how frustrated she was to be continually doing most of the housework while her husband relaxed watching TV and her kids goofed around. They took it for granted that she would get things done and she was feeling resentful and unappreciated. Since her kids were 10 and 12-years-old, they were certainly capable of helping out but they rarely did.

What can you do if you find yourself being your family’s servant and want to change the situation? One approach is to call a family meeting to create a plan for dividing up the household chores.

Begin the meeting by writing down all the tasks that needed to be done in order to keep your home functioning. Try to include everything from bringing in the mail and buying groceries to paying bills.

Next estimate how often each task needed to be done. For example, how often does your family agree the bathroom should be cleaned? The bedding washed? The floors vacuumed?

Now create a list showing all the tasks that need to be done each week. For tasks that need to be done each day like preparing dinner, you may want to write down “Monday dinner”, “Tuesday dinner” and so on. This way different people can sign up for different days. Finally have everyone sign up for the tasks they will be doing.

You can plan to have another family meeting in a week to check with everyone on how things are going and if anyone wants to change chores. Posting the chore list in a central location can help everyone remember their commitments. It can also be helpful for children to have their own chore list so they can easily check it off.

Balancing the workload will help everyone feel like an important contributor to your family’s success!

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