Keeping the Holidays Sane for Your Kids

Little ones thrive on routine and structure, the two things that tend to go by the wayside when the holidays arrive and families are running to and fro, gathering gifts, visiting relatives, and connecting with friends. Listed below are some tips for keeping things sane during this busy time of the year:
 
Set limits with family and friends.
 
Some people fear setting limits with their parents, in-laws, other family members and friends because they worry about upsetting them. The only people who get upset by loving limits are people who really need them!
 
Don't be afraid to say things like, “We can’t wait to see you. We will need to leave by six so that we can get the kids in bed by a reasonable hour.”
 
Continue to set limits with your kids.
 
Sometimes we avoid setting limits with our children at family get-togethers because we want to keep the peace or avoid meltdowns. Ironically, this leads to far more fits and far less harmony.
 
Plan ahead and provide a quiet spot for recovery.
 
Particularly with small children, ask family and friends, “Is there a quiet place where my little one can go for some recovery time if they start to test limits or get overstimulated?”
 
I vividly remember being sent to my grandparents’ bedroom as a result of being unruly during a Christmas meal. I also remember lying on their bed, screaming, punching their pillows, and falling fast asleep. I was worn out!
 
What if you don’t think your kids will go to recovery? Learn practical solutions in our newly revised book, Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood.
 
Don’t feel guilty about placing yourself in recovery.
 
I love my family… but I still find it helpful to give myself some brief “bathroom time” so that I can regain the ability to exercise self-control.
 
Remember that this too shall pass.
 
Despite the best laid plans, sometimes the wheels come off and things get ugly. At these times, it’s often comforting to remember that every situation… bad and even good… is merely temporary.
 
Thanks for reading! Our goal is to help as many families as possible. If this is a benefit, forward it to a friend.
 
Dr. Charles Fay