Chores: few of us enjoy doing them, but a spick and span house is not going to appear by itself. Whilst it can be tedious and somewhat time-consuming, such tasks need to be done lest you’d have to bear with the accumulated mess in the home that is to be your safe haven.
If you’re a parent with kids of your own, you’d realise that maintaining a clean home is not just a chore, it’s a challenge. Not only are they the main culprits, but they’d also pout, procrastinate and grumble when you try to push them to clean up after their mess. If you find yourself nagging your kids, here are 5 steps you can implement to ensure that they do their part by finishing their chores.
1. End The Distractions
If your child is not doing their chores, more often than not, they’re preoccupied with something else. If their current activity serves as a distraction, you can simply take it away and have them finish their chores.
Don’t let them return to their previous activity just yet. Your child needs to know that they have their own set of responsibilities they need to fulfil in the house and until they do their part, they can’t enjoy their time alone.
As such, talk to your child about it and ask them what he thinks. Find out what they wish to do after they’re done and motivate them to get the work done so that they can finally do what they wanted to do all along. Reiterate the fact that each household member has their own part to play and it is unfair to the rest if they didn’t contribute. Rather than explain it abstractly, break it down into smaller pieces and explain it simply. You can also appeal to their interests (the faster they finish their chores, the faster they can play), but ensure to keep it short else the talk becomes another nagging session.
2. Set A Time Limit
Setting a time limit is another option when getting your child to comply with doing chores. You can tell them that they have 30 minutes to tidy up their room and make their bed; and if they’re not done, there’d be consequences. These consequences can be in the form of a shorter playing time or an earlier bedtime.
The beauty of this system is the fact that not only are you teaching your child about the interplay of action and consequences, but you’re also fostering a sense of urgency. Moreover, you’re not nagging and is merely keeping time.
Conversely, you can also do the opposite and give them an incentive. You can tell them that the faster they finish their chore (provided that they’ve done an excellent job at it), the remaining time can be added to their playtime and the like. This makes it more exciting and stimulating as they have something to look forward to. You may want to start with this reward system first as it’s more motivational, and if your child is stubborn, opt for the punitive approach.
3. Allowance As A Leverage
If you are financially able to reward a child through monetary means, then do it! This gives a quantitative value to the labour, serving it as another motivation. Of course, this can easily transform into a habit wherein the child expects every chore to be a transaction and refuses to finish the task when there is no money involved. As such, remind the child that the money they receive is not to be expected and that ultimately, it is part of their duty as somebody who is living in the same home. They are not entitled to the said allowance, and this is merely a reward. Always communicate with your child and ask them what they think.
4. Create A Structure
Let’s face it, chores are simply never-ending. As with many other projects, making sure that general cleaning is done in an efficient manner requires a bit of planning and structure.
Make it a rule that your child’s bed as to be made and their room tidied before they can have free time. Ensure that they finish this task in the morning before they can spend the rest of the day doing something else. They have to understand that until the chores are done, they’re not allowed to have fun; it’s either boredom or chores.
Another part of the planning is delegating specific chores to the respective household member. For instance, your 5-year-old child can start by cleaning their room and cleaning their toys, and your 15-year-old can do the vacuuming. By doing so, you’ll reinforce that every member has their part to play.
5. Create A Reward System
If you wish to ensure that your kids take responsibility for their chores, introducing a reward system is a viable approach. Naturally, responsibilities are an abstract concept that may be hard to fathom for a child. Introducing a carrot-and-stick scheme will give them an incentive for them to finish their chores, even if they may not understand the concept entirely.
The reward currency may be catered to what your child values the most – it may be allowance, electronics time or even desserts. Regardless of what it may be, it serves as a motivation for your child to take chores seriously.
Getting your child to do chores becomes a battle and it will be a challenge, especially if they are particularly stubborn. It’s important to note that refraining from nagging is the best way to go, lest they’d be more put off and procrastinate even more. Instead, apply the tips above and engage in a 1-1 discussion to ensure that they understand. Always ask for their thoughts and what they feel so that it can benefit both of you. Doing chores doesn’t have to be hard if everybody does their part!
Of course, this is done with the assumption that you and the rest of your family have the time to spend an entire day to ensure that your home is spick and span. If you don’t have the time to do so and would rather spend the weekends bonding with each other by doing family activities, that’s fine too! In such cases, you can always opt to engage with house cleaning services! With professional cleaning specialists, you can spend your time with your precious family and come home to a clean home!