Do you look up at the clock in the morning and realize that, yes, your family is behind schedule, again?
Do you have a hard time remembering to stop to eat lunch, leave for the day, or floss your teeth? Consider enlisting your smartphone for help! Set thematic songs as alarm ringtones for critical or forgettable parts of your routines.
Songs catch our attention more than clocks or even timers, and are easily recognized by kids too young to read a clock. Start by picking one or two trouble spots. These might be transitions, like waking or leaving for school, or good habits you want to cultivate, like consistently eating lunch or cleaning your desk before stopping for the day.
This playlist can get you started: http://proforganizer.com/about/routinesplaylist
Add more songs as necessary to support your family’s daily routine. With small kids, songs every 5-10 minutes throughout morning routine and bedtime routine makes it easier to be firm and consistent, improves everyone’s ability to estimate time, and replaces nagging with dancing!
It might take some experimenting to find out which times work best for each step, and which steps need to be added. Ask the kids which songs would keep them on track, and what they want a reminder about! Challenge the kids to “beat the pajama song.”
Every few months, delete any alarms that you regularly ignore, adjust the times of others if needed, and add new songs to keep things fresh and relevant.
And be sure to listen to Kate Carpenter’s song “Orderly and Organized.” If professional organizers had a theme song, this might be it! The link is: http://www.broadjam.com/player/player.php?mediaID=572528.
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This article was written and contributed by NAPO Southeast Michigan chapter member Melanie Sobocinski of Prof Organizer LLC.