I have been there!
Despite being a Montessori teacher and a child psychologist, I was over scheduled, overwhelmed, overtired, distracted and stressed!
This was my state of mind 6 years ago. We just had our second child and we had just moved to London. London is such a busy city. I was always on the go, always busy! London took me on a roller coaster and I couldn’t find the exit! My husband was working 9 to 5 in a demanding stressful job and was rarely home until late due to the commute (yes living London and working in London doesn’t shorter the time in the tube, quite the contrary). I still love London but in small doses.
Since then, I am on the path of recovery: doing less, saying no, simplifying and decluttering my space and my life.
One book helped me on that journey: Simplicity Parenting© by Kim John Payne.
As explained on the Simplicity parenting website: Simplicity Parenting© by Kim John Payne offers a simple, orderly, and effective pathway to simplify four realms at home, which reduces stress on children and their parents, and allows room for connection, creativity, and relaxation.
These four realms for simplifying are:
Environment: De-cluttering too much stuff at home.
Rhythm: Increasing predictability by introducing rhythmic moments for connection and calm.
Scheduling: Soothing violent schedules brings moments for Being into all the Doing.
Unplugging: Reducing the influence of adult concerns, media and consumerism on children and families to increase resilience, social and emotional intelligence.
1.We started by unplugging straight away. We started to filter outside information and reducing the amount of screen time for our children. We don’t listen to the news at all and only that action will be life-changing for your family. I share here what we did and all the positive songs we listen to as a family.
2. We also decided to move outside London. It might be too radical for your family but it worked for us! I remember the first months in the countryside, walking in nearby forests and fields, my then 4 years was asking where we were going to stop at the coffee shop and where was the gift shop. She took a year to settle in that simple life.
3. Being in a new house, I started to declutter. It was a long process. I use the KonMari method but also I follow many minimalist tips and we are clearly going that way as a family.
4.Less and less belongings and starting with the toys was so helpfulThen we work on simplifying our schedule: I started to say to too many activities for myself then for my children. And we started to implement some small traditions in our life to add more rhythm.
I find that Simplicity Parenting goes hand and hand with the Montessori education. Montessori is all about offering a simple, natural and orderly environment to our children. Simplicity parenting helped me to extend that order to every area of our life: schedule, rhythm, belongings, exposure to medias, …
According to the author of the book, when you simplify your parenting, your children:
• Are calmer and happier
• Do better socially and emotionally
• Are more focused at school
• Find it easier to comply with family rules
• Become less picky eaters
Our daughter was the most impacted by our busy lifestyle. We have notice that she is calmer and happier in a more peaceful and natural environment. She also copes better when we are “organized” and when we have a clear routine.
And you as parent, you will:
• have a clearer picture of your values
• be more united with each other in your parenting
• Have more time and energy for connection, relaxation, and fun
Carine Robin is a a mother of 2 children. She raises them the Montessori way. Originally from Belgium where she worked as a child psychologist for several years, Carine spent 6 years in Ireland before settling in in the UK. She qualified as a Montessori teacher 10 years ago and has since worked as Montessori teacher and preschool manager. She founded Montessori-family in 2011 to provide opportunities for parents to discover Montessori. She believes that it’s truly possible to implement the Montessori ideas at home to make your house and family life welcoming to your child, her needs and her thrive for independence. She offers parents & babies classes, toddlers playgroups; Montessori home designs, one to one support, parenting classes and online courses.
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