The modern world offers an endless array of available choices and possibilities for fun, excitement and adventure. In the pursuit of a life less ordinary we can be tempted to bite off more than we can chew and get in over our heads! If you’re anything like me, it can be difficult to turn down golden opportunities when they arise but we would be wise to remember that not all that glitters is gold.
When we feel ourselves becoming overwhelmed by busy schedules or like our to do list is ruling our lives it’s time to press pause and really do some re-evaluating.
It may not sound glamorous or exciting but one of the real secrets to family fun is in laying solid foundations and then giving them and yourself a shake up now and then.
1) Clarify Family Priorities
Having a clear vision of your family values and priorities can help you make sense of all the options and demands on your family’s time and attention.
2) Establish a Simplified Schedule that Reflects your Priorities
Establishing a solid routine that reflects your family’s priorities and takes care of your non-negotiable needs and boundaries will give you more unstructured time for relaxation and spontaneous fun.
One of the things I often do with my clients is get them to design a blueprint for their Ideal Week. Now, of course, in real life things don’t always go to plan but it certainly helps to know what you’re aiming for!
Some of my family’s non-negotiable needs and boundaries include
- Down time and time out
- Exercise and Sport
- Limits on the kids media exposure
- Snuggle time
- Weekend adventures
If you would like a copy of the Ideal Week activity, flick me an email at email@example.com
3) Set Clear and Reasonable Expectations
Nothing spoils family fun quicker than bad behavior! To prevent bad behavior from spoiling family fun, set clear and reasonable expectations and follow through consistently with consequences. But remember, kids are kids and it is part of their job to push the boundaries and test the limits. If we’re honest, our own behavior is often far from perfect so we can’t realistically expect ‘perfect’ behavior from our kids.
4) Adopt a Positive Perspective
When I was a little girl I had a book called Happy Andy that really opened my eyes to the power of perspective. The story described the adventures of a little boy named Andy who transformed his everyday chores, like taking out the trash, sweeping the floor and collecting the mail, into magical games that he enjoyed and looked forward to. The lesson of the story had a big impact on the way I have approached the essential tasks of daily life every since.
When you adopt a Happy Andy Attitude, fun becomes a natural resource that you possess and can bring to everything you do in life.
5) Strike the Right Balance
Striking the right balance between maintaining the structures that support the family and being flexible enough to have fun is essential.
If you have solid foundations in place, don’t be afraid to shake things up now and then!
- Try something new
Even small changes in your daily routine such as, walking the kids to school a different way, visiting a new park or shopping at a different grocery store can add a little spice back into life.
- Do something exciting
Push the edges of your comfort zone a little and try something completely new. Is there something you’ve been considering that could add that element of excitement to your life? Whatever it is, take the first step, get the ball rolling and savor the excitement of the momentum you’re creating!
- Make looking after yourself a priority
Taking time to recharge your batteries and look after your own health and wellbeing means you have the energy to give the best of yourself to your family.
- Go on a family adventure and explore something new together
6) Discover your Fun Fingerprint
Fun is a bit like a fingerprint. Every person and family will have their own unique set of activities that they find enjoyable.
Get out there are rediscover what floats your boat this spring and inject some more fun into your day-to-day routine!
Enjoy the Adventure, Jen