You know when your plans don’t always go according to plan?
You know ‘the best laid plans of mice and men’ scenario when even with the most careful planning things don’t necessarily work out the way you thought?
You know that moment when your kids are tired, overwhelmed, frustrated, striving for more independence or being stubborn – or you’re feeling one of those strong emotions too?
Then it’s always a good idea to have what I call an ‘Oops Plan.’
It’s a backup plan or a Plan B up your sleeve!
It will help you feel back in control but it will also teach your child:
How to be resilient.
How to adapt in life.
How to be confident in themselves.
How to be self aware.
How to self regulate and self-advocate.
How to bend not break in difficult moments.
The Oops Plan
Creating an ‘Oops Plan’ is helpful because:
You are thinking ahead about the things that may go wrong.
You’re including your kids, not only in the problem solving, but in being connected to you even when things go wrong, and teaching them to be flexible and adaptable.
You’re also helping them think about how to handle it when things don’t go the way they planned, or when you or they make mistakes.
The basis of an ‘Oops Plan’ involves ANTICIPATING the situations in which your child might (or often does) come into conflict with their environment or conflict with you and PLANNING for how to make those situations go smoother. It means making it easier for your child to cope, adapt and adjust to the ups and downs of life.
When your child appears to be having difficulty, rather than digging in your heels and becoming more rigid, you have already thought about how to show empathy, reduce tension using humour or distraction, and ways to support your child out of the dilemma, mistake or situation sympathetically and kindly.
Try using the ‘Oops Plan’ and just remember to tweak it as your child grows, matures and changes on the inside as well as on the outside.
As you keep tweaking the plan, focus on ‘progress not perfection’ it will give you more confidence and your kids magic memories of childhood.