We are raising a generation of kids who don’t know HOW to have down time. We as parents may not know how to chill either! This worries me.
I believe in down time. I know it helps recharge and center us. That’s why I’ve always been hyper sensitive to overscheduling. I don’t want my girls to have too much to do. Because of course, they could fill every moment if allowed.
I try to keep our girls to two extracurricular activities at any time. They know this. And so the balance game goes. Here’s how we try to value and fight for down time:
1. Have time blocked out every evening (even 15 minutes) where nothing is scheduled.
2. Don’t go to screens (phones, computer or TV) at this time.
3. Get OUTSIDE! Especially in the evenings. Sunsets are to be appreciated.
4. Walk the dogs (my favorite family ritual).
You’ll be amazed at the conversations that can happen when you JUST HANG OUT with each other. I let the girls lead on what we talk about. And we always end up going longer than 15 minutes. I also don’t force serious conversations. Just having that CONNECTED time together–is what families need.
I love downtime. And looking back, I know it is the stuff family love is made of.