Schedule? Routine? Free-for-all?

We all know people we would refer to as Type A. These people make lists, love calendars, and live a predictable life. Often, their homes are clean and organized like their lives. Their kids follow a strict routine and seem to thrive with it.


My kids and I thrive on this very specific, daily, weekly, monthly routine.

We have two week meal plans. We make plans with friends weeks in advance.

Chores rotate weekly. I do laundry on the same day each week.

Type B people, conversely, follow no patterns and seem to be utterly disorganized. No calendars dictate their lives. Meals happen with whatever is around. Their kids are in a free-for-all and seem to thrive.


Somewhere in between are type A-B. There might be a routine, but not s strict schedule. A calendar might have a few key appointments on it to remind the family about random activities. There seems to be some organizational pattern to the home and life. Their kids go with the flow of general guidelines for the day and seem to thrive.

There might be a pseudo meal plan for a few days in advance, and grocery shopping happens via frequent, small trips or orders. Meal times are approximate and often whenever the majority are hungry rather than by a clock.


So, which should you do? You're an adult and get to choose whether to force a style of life or live as you were born or raised. I am type A through and through. My calendarS are color-coded and updated frequently. My kids follow a strict-ish routine schedule. Will adheres much more closely to the letter of the schedule than the others, but they basically follow the rough outline. Every commitment is clearly explained ahead of time. When we go off routine, confusion ensues. Order is the name of the house. I ask my type B-ish husband and Mack to make concessions to be more orderly than their bent toward entropy.


My best friend, Saucy, is trying to set up a routine for her family to follow on the days I am not there. Routines are against her nature, so she is struggling. She thinks a routine will help her kids, especially with schoolwork and instrument practice. When they were in school, the routine was built in five days a week. She is trying to force her life and brain into something that doesn't come naturally to her so her children can thrive.


Some families choose to entirely go with life's flow. They call it "Whole life unschooling". This method involves doing what is needed or wanted when people choose to do tasks. Wake up when they want. Eat when and what their bodies ask. Read or work when they want. Kids explore and ask questions on topics they enjoy. They eat when and often what they want. There are no, or few schedules. Little expectation for anyone's requirements through a day. Adults who follow this philosophy may struggle in a traditional work environment, but many find flexible ones that allow them to observe this lifestyle. I hear from my acquaintances who do this that they are very adaptable and kids have no issues transitioning from one method to another.

Whatever method is best for you and. your family in any given season of life is the best one. I know plenty who need more structure even than we observe in my home. And those for whom loosey-goosey works very well. We all make adjustments for others in our lives who choose differently. Saucy's family follows my routine when I am there for school, but I am slightly more flexible with expectations depending on theirs. We work together to make the day go smoothly.

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