I am terrible when it comes to car maintenance. It is one of those things that I just don’t really care about. I love when my husband takes my big ol’ sexy van and fills it up with gas. Sometimes, I even send my 17 year old out to run errands in my car, so he can fill up the gas for me too. I drive as far as humanly possible before taking the 5-10 minutes to fill up with gas.
I also never do the oil changes. I just tell my husband that it needs to be done, and he takes it in for me. He really is the greatest. I strongly dislike going to car places. I feel like they are talking to me in a foreign language and I just stand there looking stupid.
However, maintaining your car by keeping it full of gas, consistently getting the oil changed, and checking the engine helps your car to run better and longer. Problems may arise, like a flat tire, but if you keep maintaining all the major stuff your car will work better.
Our families are the same way; they need to be maintained.
When they are well maintained, then most of the time things run pretty smoothly. Problems will arise, but when you’re not in panic mode all the time you can more easily navigate through the problems and then get back to maintenance.
I was thinking about this as we had our FAMILY MEETING yesterday. Problems were coming back up because I hadn’t been maintaining things as well as I could be.
One of the problems that has come back up in our meeting is the messy kitchen. We decided in Family Meeting months ago that if you leave the kitchen a mess that you would be charged a cleaning fee. Simple as that. However, I was starting to feel bad for charging the kids cleaning fees, so I started reminding kids to come back and clean up after themselves. They didn’t want to come and clean, so it would end with me being frustrated AND still having a dirty kitchen.
We had already fixed the problem; I just need to maintain things to keep it going.
We did just that in our meeting yesterday. I told them that I will stop reminding them and will just go back to charging them. They were all fine with it because they were the ones to pick being charged in the first place.
Here are a few steps to help you maintain your happy family:
Have FAMILY MEETINGS. They help your family to be on the same team. Everyone has a voice and everyone gets to help solve all the little bumps in the road.
Do your kids have a clear plan of what’s expected of them? This is where I love using LEVELS OF LIBERTY . It lets each kid know what is expected of them and what liberties they will have once they have mastered those skills.
Keep your own emotions in check. Sometimes when we are feeling upset over something else our kids or spouse take the brunt of it. Stop it. If you’re dealing with something, be open and honest that you’re struggling, but don’t take it out on your family. Let them be your biggest cheerleaders not your emotional whipping boy.
Do your best. Your best will be different whether you are healthy or whether you are sick. Maybe you were up the night before with a screaming baby, or maybe you’re feeling fantastic. So sometimes your best will be to just not say anything at all, and at other times it will be to create something fantastic that will be helpful to your family. Just remember to always do your best.
What if your family is a disaster?
Some of your families might not be in maintenance mode; they might be a full disaster. Instead of just going in to get your oil changed, what if your whole car is on fire? You may think that your family has no hope because it is so crazy, but there is always hope. For those of you needing some one on one help you can set up a free call with me and we can help get your family on a better path. Simply click on the button below and we’ll set up a time to chat.