Do your evenings kinda suck? If so, try this.

Tell me if this is a familiar scene …

It’s 5pm. There is homework to be done but no one besides you seems to care about it.

After three clenched-teeth reminders you see your child staring off into space, shuffling around in his chair and thinking of a million other things he “needs to do first.”

Your phone starts pinging you with reminders to respond to a couple of important emails you didn’t have a chance to get to earlier because you had to stop at the gas station unexpectedly on your way to pick-up and you hadn’t built that into your schedule for the day … set back.

T minus 20 minutes til basketball practice and the basketball shoes are nowhere to be found.

Finally, rushing out the door, shoes in hand, barking commands like a drill sergeant and just hoping you won’t be late … again. As soon as you hear the seatbelts click, here comes the ….

“Mooooommmmm, did you bring me a snack???”

And this is just from 5-6pm.

AHHHHH!!!!!! I’m not alone in this, right?

Now, peaceful evenings with the family would be lovely. I’m all about peaceful and I’m all about lovely. However, sometimes – and some times – are harder than others to create an environment of calm and consistency – specifically evenings in the midst of the occasional (or standard) massive chaos.

So, what’s the secret to a peaceful evening with the family, you ask?

WARNING: You might be skeptical or rolling your eyes at me in about 20 seconds because this sounds too touchy-feely — I totally get it  — but bare with me. I base everything I teach on research and strategies that are proven to work.

Okay, brace yourself, the answer is: connection.

Yep, connecting is the secret sauce to taking the evening from high-stress-chaos to tolerable (and possibly even enjoyable) chaos.

Even just a few minutes of connecting is proven to change the whole parent/child dynamic and make the head-spinning-racing-around-times feel more manageable.

And “connecting” doesn’t mean going through your daughter’s backpack together searching for that missing crumpled-up study guide or scrolling through Instagram while she tells you how some of her friends were leaving someone out at lunch today.

“Connecting” means putting everything else away (yes, this goes for everybody) and being 1000% present to talk, to listen and catch up on the day, even if just for 10 minutes.

Connection is the underlying force that drives good behavior, motivates accountability and bonds relationships.

This is proven time and time again in research — whether by having family dinners, taking time to play together, time to talk about the day (both the good and the bad) and showing true interest in your child – this connection time has the absolute biggest impact on so many social and emotional factors and choices.

When your child feels connected with you, he or she will want to keep that relationship strong and positive. Your children will want to listen. They will want to cooperate. They will be open to your guidance and influence. They will want to make good choices.

Nowadays, with the overload of activities and expectations it is so easy to become “human doings” rather than “human beings,” but taking just a few sacred minutes of pausing to “just be” together can create a huge shift in your home ….and maybe even make some of those crazy evenings feel peaceful and lovely after all 🙂

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Your evenings don’t have to be stressful and chaotic!
Imagine a routine that EVERYONE follows.

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