Traveling with family members can be a trying time for all involved, and yet it seems such an essential activity, whether you’re traveling abroad or just to the closest mountain resort. Yet when it seems so difficult to carve out “me” time during the regular school year, how do you ensure keeping your sanity and still loving yourself on holiday when your children are all over the place and all over you? Read on for some tips:
Scheduling and Preparation
It’s all about the planning. First, choose a place that is a compromise for everybody: that your kids will enjoy while not driving you crazy. A quieter beach resort perhaps? Or a mountain top resort with outdoor activities?
Then it’s time to schedule activities for you and activities for your children. Schedule the activities you would like to do and write them down. This avoids arranging for your kids to stay with someone and finding yourself in limbo, at a loss of what to do or where to go. That will only make you feel worse afterwards and more irritated with the children. Want time to exercise or to visit a museum? Schedule it. Write it down and plan it. Arrange to have the children stay in a kids’ club, with another member of the family or with a baby-sitter.
But having children is all about unpredictability I hear you say. Indeed, but keep in mind that not everything goes wrong all the time. Any if for any reason you have to change your plans, bear in mind that it is easier to reschedule than to plan.
Communicate your plans and your ideas clearly. Explain to the children and your husband if necessary that there will be time for them and time for yourself and that you will each respect the time of the other. When you are with your kids, be present and not on the phone or otherwise distracted. Talk, play and engage with them. Remember, you set the example. If you want them off their electronic devices and interacting with you fully, then you have to be the first to do it.
Relax rules and boundaries
It is difficult to maintain discipline when you’re away from home. “My house, my rules” simply does not apply here. Fries for lunch and dinner? Go ahead! Bedtime moved back a couple hours? Fine. No shower today? That’s ok, you’ll get just as dirty tomorrow. You may even find that relaxing certain rules and regulations may give these rules more respect once you’re back at home and it will be easier to instill discipline.
Instead, agree together on 2 or 3 basic rules to follow but stick to them firmly. Since you’ve agreed on them beforehand, there’s no way your kids can renege on them. For example, I choose: no screaming, no clothes on the floor and no fighting as my 3 ground rules. Other than that, it’s free will all around!
Speaking of relaxed rules and regulations, don’t leave the tablet at home. If you think the iPad was created by Steve Jobs, you’re wrong. The iPad was created by a mother. It’s good currency and it keeps them busy when you want to jet off for your run.
However, it’s good to establish some boundaries, such as, screen time only allowed when indoors and when there is absolutely nothing more interesting to look at!
We at ILoveMe believe that honesty is the cornerstone of any self-love program. So be honest with yourself. Why are you taking this holiday? Do you need a holiday? If so, leave the kids at home and go alone or with your partner for a few days. Nowhere to leave the kids? Then stay at home and watch our video on how to travel from your living room.
Do you need to bond with your family? Great! Then we have a few tips for you, go back to point no. 1!
Do you have any self-loving holiday tips to share?