So recently I read this article about this very type A woman who hurried her daughter all the time until she realized she was crushing her spirit. Her daughter was a stop and smell the roses kind of kid and the mom was always too busy for such shenanigans. She explained that she wanted to be more present with her daughter and stop missing out on life because she was so busy rushing them. There was part of me that really connected with the article. I was nodding my head saying “yes, I do that too” but then there was another part of me saying “yeah, but you gotta get crap done!” I have two toddlers and a 7-year-old that dawdles. I might also add I am a bit of an over-committer and I am also habitually late so I’m pretty much always rushing from place to place.
But, like I said, there was a part of me that really connected with the article, so I decided to give it a shot. I mentally committed to stop saying “hurry up” for one week. I don’t know if I can rid it from my vocabulary forever, but I was pretty sure I could commit to 7 days. Guess what happened? Life got a little less stressful and I still got stuff done. At first I thought it was a fluke, but it really worked all week long.
My first “hurry up” of the day normally happens when I’m trying to get my 7-year-old out of bed and ready for school. He likes to take his time waking up getting out of bed. I normally rush him up and downstairs for breakfast. But, for the experiment I just woke him up and left it up to him to get up and get moving. Instead of feeling rushed, we chatted while he got ready. He was ready in record time and I didn’t raise my voice or get stressed out. Score 1 for no hurry.
With my toddlers I made things more of a game to get them moving. We played, ‘who can beat mommy get in the car’ or ‘who can get their seat buckled first.’ We all had fun, they stayed focused on the task at hand and we got out of the house on time, which as I mentioned being late by nature, this was no small feat.
I will not lie, there were a few times it almost slipped out. I also found a few creative ways to say hurry up without actually saying the words, but for the most part, I stayed true to my experiment. The biggest thing I realized was that me saying “hurry up” wasn’t actually making anyone move any faster. As a matter of fact, it might have even been slowing all of us down. I think it has just become part of the routine, rather than an effective tactic for getting us out the door. I have no idea if I’ll be able to break the habit, but I’m all for finding ways to make our routines less stressful and this seemed to help. I don’t want to live life in the fast lane. I don’t want to rush my kids and I definitely want to stop and smell the roses, or more like check out the rocks, the clouds, the bugs and the big trucks.