A daily rhythm is the key to a calm and happy home. It reduces tension, brings a sense of flow to your days and helps you find the time to get everything done.
The other day I shared my tips for creating a peaceful atmosphere in the home. One idea I kept returning to was the idea of rhythm.
Sounds simple enough, right?
Just find your rhythm. But what is it and how do you get it?
Put simply, rhythm is the flow of your days, your week and your year. It’s not as rigid as a schedule, nor as chaotic as flying by the seat of your pants. It’s the steady in and out breath of homelife, held together by purpose and predictability.
Children in particular tend to thrive on knowing what comes next. As an adult I still find I feel calmer if I know both what needs to be done, and that I will have enough time in my day to do it. This is the purpose of rhythm.
In this post you will:
- decide what needs to be done each day to keep your home humming along
- identify the touchstones in your day to build your rhythm around
- learn about the in and out breath of the day and why this is important
- put together a daily rhythm that works for your home
Finding rhythm in the home comes naturally for some, but if this is new to you, or even if you just need a hand to tweak your exisiting rhythm, these ideas can get you started.
What are the Essentials in Your Daily Rhythm
As mamas we have a lot that we need to get done everyday. And somehow we need to get our kids on board too. The list can seem never ending.
Make the beds. Dress the kids (and yourself!). Fill everyone’s tummies. Get out the door and get the shopping done. Come home and mop the floors, do the dishes, put on a load of washing and squeeze in a maths lesson for your eldest. Meanwhile the little one needs attention and the baby needs feeding.
How on earth are we supposed to get it all done without tears?
Yours or your kids!
The secret is having a rhythm that allows all of the essentials to take care of themselves.
Knowing what comes next helps you stay on top of things but it also helps your children. If they can anticipate what’s coming they are more likely to run with it instead of fight against it.
Do you know what needs to be done each day or are you winging it and hoping it all comes together?
Grab a pen and paper and settle yourself down in a quiet, sunny spot where you can think. Start jotting down what you need to do each day.
For me this looks like chores, formal lesson time for my son, feeding animals, putting the wee one down for her nap, preparing meals, spending too much time on Instagram… :-p
Make sure you include all the things you need to get done for you to feel like your home is running well.
Rhythm allows a sense of calm to settle on us and our homes.
Find the Touchstones of Your Daily Rhythm
Now that you know what needs to be done, it’s time to start putting it together in a way that makes it flow. That’s the whole point, afterall. We want this to feel natural and easy.
The best way to arrange your rhythm is to centre your activities around the touchstones.
What are touchstones?
Your touchstones are the moments that happen at roughly the same time every day; day in and day out. Waking up, eating meals together, bedtimes. These are the common touchstones most of us have.
If these are all over the place, making these moments predictable is where you need to start!
Create a bedtime ritual (and set a rough time for meals. If there is predictability in these moments, your whole day will run smoother. Build your rhythm around these touchstones.
Don’t forget to forge out moments just for you as a person too. Perhaps a time for meditating or journaling. Or maybe including a yoga session before bed. It is important that you are caring for yourself as well as your children and your home.
Build your day around meals and bedtimes. Create rituals for these everyday happenings. These are the touchstones which will hold your daily rhythm together.
Balance Your Daily Rhythm
Once you’ve decided what needs to be done in a day and found your touchstones to build your rhythm around, it’s time to put it all together in a way that feels balanced.
We do this by sorting our activities into those we consider inward, and those we consider outward.
Look at the activities you listed in step one. Split them in to two groups;inward activities in one list, outward activities in the other. Another way to look at this in the context of running a home could be energetic activities compared to peaceful activities. You want to alternate between these throughout the day.
Putting Together Your Daily Rhythm
You’ve done all the hard work, now all that’s left to do is put it together.
Alternate activities from your two lists through out your day. Slot them in around your touchstone moments. It really is that simple!
Remember, you’re not looking to schedule in times, just to create an order for events to occur in. This will give your day flow. Write down your order of events in respect to your touchstone moments.
By leaving times out of it, we are leaving ourselves room to move. There is no running behind because we don’t have to get things done when the clock says, we just need to flow from one activity to the next.
I won’t promise no resistance from your kids, but generally you will find that once you have settled into your new rhythm and they can predict what comes next, they will be more inclined to go along with it. You know their needs are being met because you have factored it into your day from the outset.
I hope you remembered to factor in your needs too!
Alternate breathing in actions with breathing out actions to give your days a sense of flow.
And now you’ve done it!
You have successfully created a daily rhythm for your home and family.
It can help if you make a pretty visual for your rhythm and place it somewhere everyone in the family can see it. Try using colours or pictures to define your activities if your children are too small to read yet.
One last point that is worth mentioning. Everyday doesn’t need to look the same. You may find you need to change the middle of each day depending on what you have on. Just try to keep those touchstone moments in place and try to maintain the balance of in and out breath to the day.
Creating rituals around activities can help to anchor them in your day and make the mundane a little more special. Perhaps a little verse when you serve lunch, or a particular apron you like to wear to do the housework?
I use and recommend The Mulberry Planner for helping to create a rhythm in our homeschool days. CLICK HERE to purchased your digital copy. You can get 10% OFF the regular price by using the code WHOLEHOME as a little thank you for being a supporter of This Whole Home. Thank you x