How often does everything go just as you planned?
If you’re a parent, chances are this doesn’t happen as often as you might like. And for those of us who live full, busy lives, the unexpected has the potential to throw our entire day into a tailspin!
So how do you deal with the unexpected?
The key is to build margins into your schedule — an extra 15 minutes here, an extra 15 minutes there — that you probably won’t need if everything goes smoothly but that allows you to catch up from all of the unexpected things that happen during the day.
For example, let’s say you need to leave the house by 8 o’clock in the morning. Your plan is to serve breakfast at 7, get everybody dressed and ready at 7:30 and walk out the door at 8. (This is a real life example from our home, by the way).
But what happens when the 2-year-old has a meltdown, the baby throws her cereal and banana slices on the floor, the 6-year-old wants a particular pair of socks that are nowhere to be found and the 4-year-old forgot to go potty?
I’ll tell you what happens…you’re late. Again.
Instead of creating a schedule or routine with just enough time to get everything done that needs to be done, include built-in margins for all of the unexpected things. Then, when someone spills their milk or throws a fit because her sister looked at her funny, you’ll have enough time to deal with it without adding more stress to your day!
Now, if only I could remember this myself…
Do you include margin in your day for the unexpected?