Now that we live in the days of social media where opinions are flourishing and instantly streamed on our news feed, it’s easy to get distracted by what everyone else is doing. I have to continually remind myself that what is good for the goose doesn’t even fit into my daily schedule and family dynamic. (Read my full article on comparing your mothering skills to what you see on social media here!)
However, having drawn from my childhood experiences and what I have seen work for my own teen, there are some core lessons that will benefit everyone. These are traits that can easily be instilled through the application of a simple daily chore routine.
So, why is it so important for your teenager to help around the house?
Growing up, my brothers and I had a weekly chore list. We had certain chores each day that we had to complete once we got home from school. We knew that this was a top priority because if our chores didn’t get done, then we couldn’t play. When I was old enough to get a job, I had no problem adjusting to the needs of my employer because I was able to keep first things first.
2. Time Management
When you are a kid, all that’s on your mind is when and where you and your friends are going to hang out. When I give my son chores to do, he knows that this is going to take away from his free time. Since he cherishes time spent doing what he would rather be doing, he knows the earlier he completes his work, the sooner he can get back to his friends.
One of the most important lessons I want my son to carry with him into his adult life is the importance of a good attitude. We have an understanding that if he goes about a task in an ill-mannered way, then he will not get reimbursed for a job well done (I deduct from his allowance). He knows that the way he approaches his work is about 80% of the job itself. Many life lessons are the direct result of our attitudes and how we feel about a situation.
When our dishwasher went out, I found myself having to wash dishes by hand. My son was 10 years old and had never seen anyone wash a dish with a cloth. I realized this was the perfect opportunity to teach him this valuable skill (you are welcome future wife). I helped him a few times and one day I told him he could do it by himself. He kept saying he couldn’t do it. Once he overcame his fears and completed the job, he was beaming with pride.
So, mom friends, it may take a few weeks to work out a plan that will fit into your family’s lifestyle, but the effort will pay off for a lifetime.
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You’ll love this podcast episode from This Grit and Grace Life: These Strategies Will Help You Raise Great Kids – 063!