In all the hustle and bustle of the holiday rush, my kids can occasionally reach a point where they start to misbehave and become belligerent. Sometimes, they can pick a very inopportune moment to voice their rebellion. While my first instinct is to become embarrassed and upset, I am trying to become better about thinking before reacting to their outbursts. Usually our kids are very well-behaved and obedient. If they are agitated, perhaps there is a reason.
While I am sure the list of reasons for my kids’ misbehavior could be endless, I believe it really boils down to a few basic things:
- They are tired. With all the Christmas activities, sometimes the kids have skimped on the amount of sleep they are getting.
- They are hungry. Excited and anxious to keep busy, my children will often refrain from eating.
- They are too busy. Amidst all the fun, kids need downtime, too. Too much fun can be overwhelming.
- They are not being given enough attention. The holidays can be a time of rush for mom and pop; buying presents, mailing cards, baking, and the like. Being neglected can often lead my children to act out in hopes of receiving attention.
- They are not being trained. In all the hustle and bustle of the season, mom and pop can become lazy in their attempts to maintain discipline.
Most of these problems have very simple solutions; it is only a matter of me taking the time to do the right thing.
- I need to make sure we all get enough sleep. My kids are not going to willing fall into bed (at least not generally). I am responsible for setting bedtime and sticking to it.
- I need to make sure they are eating well. It doesn’t matter how much fun they are having, I need to make my children sit down and eat a healthy meal. I should also monitor how much junk food they are taking in, especially during this time of year!
- I need to avoid over-booking our schedule. While there are many events that appeal, trying to add everything will only tire us all out!
- I need to make sure that I am listening to my children and not putting outside responsibilities before them.
- I need to stop using grace as an excuse for laziness. My children are not going to train and discipline themselves; I need to remain consistent.
If I fail to fulfill my responsibilities as their parent, I am only making life harder on all of us. Christmas will only be less enjoyable and my family will lose sight of the true meaning of the season. Maintaining a well-balanced routine will help us get the most of the holiday and keep mommy from dying of embarrassment.
“…But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law…”Galatians 5:22-23
We’d love to know… How do you help your children maintain balance during the Christmas season?