“You must unlearn what you have learned.” – Yoda in The Empire Strikes Back.
This life lesson from Yoda really hits home right now with all of us. I have had a few moms and dads reach out and ask how I am handling the new normal. They might see that I am still producing around the same amount of work that I have been doing before schools were shut down. I tell them that it is my family and I finding the right routine that works for all of us.
Unlearn What You Have Learned And Find Your New Routine
Whether you work from home or went into an office you had the normal routine of sending your kids off to school or daycare and then starting your day. That is not happening anymore. We all have been trying to find ways to manage everything. It went from juggling three to four things to now where there are ten things up in the air we have to balance.
I think that is the key word – balance. Find your balance. Find a routine that works for your family. For my wife and kids and myself we had kept the same morning routine of breakfast and daily rituals. Then we had to work on a new routine that we could all count on. When I first became a dad I realized that babies and toddlers thrived on routine. Yes, they need to learn how to be flexible in life, but having a routine gives them something to focus on each day.
Talk Out Your Plan
So when can you make this plan? I would suggest working on a plan during a meal. Whether it is breakfast, lunch or dinner, have all of your family members talk about a routine and what would work for everyone. For us we have had our kids do their virtual school work in the morning after breakfast. If they needed help my wife and I have been working with them on their assignment. After lunch they get some screen time or watch a movie. Then my kids and I go out in the backyard for “gym class” so they can get some exercise. Then they play for a bit more while I am able to get work done and start on dinner.
Find your balance. Look for a routine that works for you. It will be different from the normal work week you were used to, but it will help you and your family out. There will be times where things might get off track, but that is life. Do what is best for you and your family. To use another quote from Yoda, “Always in motion is the future.” Things don’t have to be set in stone, but have some type of structure for you and your kids. It will make a world of difference.
I hope this helps. I am no expert, but I have given this advice to some of my friends who have reached out to me this past week. Now I wanted to share it with you in case you might need it as well. Take care and stay safe.
Lastly, I want to thank the brave men and women all over the country and the world looking for a cure for this virus and those taking care of the sick and protecting us. You are heroes. We are grateful for everything you are doing to make us get back to normal.