Thursday, May 1, 2014

Alone Time

Getting alone time when you have a family is not an easy feat. It is not only important for women, but men too. Women who stay at home during the work week, often expect their husbands to "do their fair share" on the weekend and they want a break from the kids. Rightfully so! While I do agree, men should chip in on the home front, everyone needs a break from their daily grind. 

How do people do this? Here is how we have done it.... 

Weekend Plan of Attack  

Mike and I heard** about a "quadrant system" when Hadley was little. It is a way for both people to actually get some alone time every weekend. It takes some disciple and planning. If you don't plan out the weekend in advance, it slips away in the craziness. 

The concept is to divide Saturday and Sunday (or any two days you like) into four blocks of 4 hour windows. Then assign each part to the following categories: 
  • Family Time: Everyone together doing something as a family. 
  • Divide and Conquer: Each parent has one (or more if you have 3 or more kids) kid. They spend "special time" with that kid(s). The arrangement of kids should alternate so mom and dad get this special time with all the kids over time. 
  • Mom Alone Time: This is a window when she can do ANYTHING she wants or needs to do: manicure, sleep, brunch with friends, shopping, errands, etc. 
  • Dad Alone Time: This is a window when he can do ANYTHING he wants or needs to do: surf, golf, sleep, read, etc. 
Keys to success: 
  • The window of time must be 4 hours. If it is any shorter it isn't enough time for someone to actually enjoy their activity. It becomes rushed and creates stress which is the exact opposite of the goal here. 
  • The windows must be respected. No calling your spouse on their alone time to do a favor, ask questions or anything other than urgent needs. 
  • Plan early and make sure your plan incorporates the kids' napping schedules. 
** If I remembered who shared this idea with us, I would definitely recognize and thank them. If you shared this idea with me, please remind me. I owe you BIG!!!

1 comment:

  1. This is a great way of doing this Lisa! I have a friend who does something similar...I'm not sure if it's an exact quadrant, but it's a set (or pretty set) schedule and it really seems to work for them! May have to try this out! Thank you for the tips!