Every parent knows how hard it is to keep their child’s room clean and neat. Dr. Theodore Shapiro, a professor of psychiatry at the New York Weill Cornell Center, told the New York Times: “Messiness is just the natural state of all children until age six or so when they develop the requisite motor and behavioral skills to be able to impose order on their worlds.”
Some kids, though, don’t seem to outgrow messiness, carrying bad habits over into teenage years.
Here are six pointers to help put them on the road to organized.
1. Be a role model
Create a home atmosphere filled with order and peace. Make cleaning and decluttering a regular part of the family routine. Establish this rule: if an item doesn’t find a good place to be kept, get rid of it.
2. Don’t nag nor react with anger
Negative energy is counterproductive. At the end of the day, your frustration and anger will be far worse than the mess itself. Instead, as a family, establish rules of what needs to be done around the home.
3. Stop talking and get to work
Directives from parents often seem to go unheard. In this case, take your child to the mess and showthem what needs to be done.
4. Train, train, and keep training! But don’t do all the work.
Many parents make the mistake of continuing to clean up after their children. Even a 5-year-old, though, can be trained to participate in keeping their room tidy. Be clear with your child about what is expected of them.
5. Make It fun
Housework doesn’t have to be considered drudgery. Play fun music and dance while cleaning. Or compete to see who can clean their room quickest.
6. Pick your battles.
Sometimes, it pays off just to turn a blind eye to the chaos. This could be the best solution if you’re upset and know you might overreact.
Don’t be deluded to believing that a slob is mentally disorganized. If you’re a parent to one, be encouraged by knowing that being a slob may not all be negative after all. Some of the most creative people are known to be chronic slobs. In fact, a study conducted in 2013 found people with messier rooms tendered more creative responses than those with tidier rooms.
Still not working for you? Remind your child being more organized is important to helping realize one’s true potential. Plus, keeping your surrounding clean and organized is good for our overall health and wellbeing. Studies have reported benefits such as a good night’s sleep, healthy bodies, better concentration and… happy parents.