Strategies to Minimizing Chaos
Ever went to a large gathering with small children and family envisioning such an enjoyable Holiday gathering only to leave exhausted and peeling out of the driveway? Been there, done that. Managing a gathering, that includes excited children, without chaos is like leading a strategic mission. Good leaders anticipate chaos and do what they can to avoid it.
Consider what a leader does to prevent chaos…
Every Holiday, our large family gathers which includes several small children. The roar of excitement and noise fills the house. Each family’s arrival brings unparalleled excitement from years past. It’s like I can hear the increase in decibels as excitement fills the air. Last Holiday Season, my adult nieces developed a plan to minimize the roar and the normal level of chaos. It worked like a charm.
I realized that they executed like a leader might lead a team to avoid chaos.
The nieces got ahead of the game and met with the children once all had arrived for an intimate discussion. They laid out expectations and the plan for the evening with all the littles tentatively listening. Explaining how good behavior was expected in order to open the beautiful gifts under the tree for them later. Each child understood that all the adults would open their gifts first and the littles would go next. It worked like a charm!
All the children were so GOOD, and it was so much calmer than previous Holiday gatherings.
By reinforcing the vision for the evening, the children knew what to expect and what was expected of them. When they got loud, or a debate bubbled up, we reminded them of the expectations and gifts that await. Communicating our confidence in them that they could meet the challenge. Answering their questions to ensure each one knew the plan and what their part was in that plan.
We reinforced good behaviors throughout the evening and provided the hope that we knew they could do it!
Now it’s a new year. Meanwhile, they’ve grown another year stronger, bigger, louder, and more energetic. Let’s hope this year the same leadership strategy works a 2nd time. Perhaps a new Holiday Tradition?
Looking for other ways to minimize chaos this season? I found this to be a good read, Stop The Chaos: 8 Ways to Enjoy the Holidays-And Your Family by Joshua Straub.
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