How to Simplify Family Life For Happier Kids & Parents

Written by Dr Lucy Russell DClinPsyc CPsychol AFBPsS
Dr Lucy Russell Clinical Psychologist Founder of They Are The Future
Author: Dr Lucy Russell, Clinical Psychologist

Simplifying family life can lead to happier kids and parents alike.

As a parent, you know how chaotic life can get.

Between work, school, extracurricular activities, and household responsibilities, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the little things that add up.

Every now and again I make a concerted effort to simplify family life. It’s hard, but I try to revisit it regularly and set myself small and achievable goals.

By reducing stress, streamlining chores and schedules, and enjoying more quality time together, you can create a more fulfilling and contented family environment.

Let’s look at simple ways you can do this.

Simplifying Family Life: Key Takeaways

  • Simplifying family life can lead to happier kids and parents.
  • Reducing stress is essential for a fulfilling and contented family.
  • Streamlining chores and schedules can help create a more manageable family life.
  • Enjoying more quality time together is crucial for family bonding.
  • By making small changes and taking little steps, you can create a simpler and more fulfilling family life.

Simplifying Daily Life for the Whole Family

As a busy parent, it’s easy to get caught up in the daily routine of running errands, completing a never-ending to-do list, and managing much stuff.

However, if we take a step back we can all admit that simplifying daily life for all family members can create more family time, reduce stress, and improve overall well-being.

a mother and daughter decluttering in their home

One of the main culprits of a cluttered and overwhelming daily life is social media. Spending hours scrolling through social media feeds not only takes away from precious family time but also adds unnecessary stress and anxiety. It’s important that we work to limit social media use and prioritize quality time with loved ones.

Another way to simplify daily life is by streamlining tasks such as grocery shopping. Creating a grocery list and sticking to it can help to save time and reduce stress at the grocery store. Using tools like meal planning and online grocery delivery services can further simplify the process.

You might decide that you will automate a weekly grocery delivery every Monday, and then do a small “top up” grocery shop on a Friday.

Family time is also important to a simplified daily life. It’s important to schedule in dedicated family time, whether it be a weekly game night or a family outing. Prioritizing family time can help to create a more meaningful and fulfilling daily routine.

happy little girl in grocery store

Simplifying Family Life: Practical Tips

When it comes to simplifying family life, there are several strategies that you can implement on a regular basis.

Below are some practical tips to help families simplify their lives and prioritize what’s truly important:

Simplifying Life By Decluttering Your Physical Space

In my opinion the absolute best way to simplify your life is to declutter your physical space.

The decluttering process involves tackling the piles of clothes, toys, and other items that may be taking up unnecessary space in your home, slowly but surely. Having less stuff truly feels great!

A great way to start is by having a family meeting to discuss which areas are important to each family member.

Which items are important to each person, and which can be donated or thrown away?

Look around regularly and consider how you could simplify your home environment. Aim to declutter and organize each room regularly on rotation, keeping only the items that are necessary and have a purpose in your home.

When I comes to surfaces, drawers and cupboards, I like to use the “Sweep and Sort” method!

For example, if I am clearing a messy desk I will sweep everything off that surface into a large cardboard box. Then I can clean the whole desk all at once. After that, I can work my way through the contents of the box, returning some of the items to the desk, whilst others are thrown away or donated to charity.

The Sweep and Sort can be fun and satisfying. Why not involve your children in the clear-out? Not only will this help to reduce physical clutter, but it will also encourage a sense of teamwork and collaboration within the family.

Extra Tip:Take a few minutes each day to put things back where they belong. This can create a sense of calm and reduce stress in the long run.
a woman putting sheets on her bed

Maximize Quality Time in Different Ways

Another way to simplify family life is to maximize quality time together.

How about creating one or two new family traditions?

One option is to establish a regular family game night where every member of the family chooses a game to play. This is a fun regular way for family members to bond and connect.

Another idea is to cook meals together as a family once a week. Maybe each person could contribute to one aspect of the meal such as a main course, side salad or dessert?

Not only is this a great way to spend quality time together, but it also helps to teach valuable life skills.

You could also consider taking a walk or bike ride together as a family, enjoying the outdoors and each other’s company.

Prioritizing quality time and focusing on what’s truly important can lead to a happier and more fulfilling family life.

Extra Tip:Experiment with different family activities until you find one that everyone loves!

Simplify Family Routines on a Regular Basis

To reduce stress and simplify daily life, aim to streamline their family routines on a regular basis.

This means taking small steps to make daily tasks more efficient and manageable.

For example, create a grocery list in advance to save time and reduce trips to the store.

Experiment with tools like Google Calendar to keep track of important appointments and events.

I am not the most organised person but I know that taking the time to plan using certain apps and programmes can save time and energy, making it easier to focus on what truly matters. One great tip is to set aside one morning per month to have a go at doing this.

Extra Tip:Get young kids involved in the simplification process by giving them specific tasks that are appropriate for their age level. This will not only help to lighten the load, but also teach them valuable life skills.


Streamlining Schedules and Activities for a Simplified Life

For families with young children or even teens, managing extracurricular activities can often feel overwhelming.

To simplify your life, consider limiting the number of activities your children participate in, prioritizing those that bring them the most joy.

Are your children doing too much?

Is this an opportunity to reassess and rebalance their schedules?

Creating a weekly visual schedule can also help reduce stress and create a sense of order for you all as a family.

Here’s a brilliant video from Tiny & Tidy showing you one effective way of creating a family visual schedule.

YouTube video
Tips for Streamlining Schedules and ActivitiesBenefits
Create a weekly scheduleReduce stress and create a sense of order
Rebalance extracurricular activities. Is your child doing too much?More quality family time and reduced stress

Small steps can also make a big impact when it comes to simplifying family life.

Instead of overwhelming yourself with a large-scale organization or decluttering project, try breaking it down into small steps, each containing manageable tasks you can do in twenty minutes or less.

For example, start with clearing out one small area of your home each day. At the end of the day you will feel a sense of satisfaction that you have made an indent in your clutter.

By implementing these small steps and focusing on a simplified life, you can reduce stress and enjoy more quality time with your family.

Simplifying Family Life

Simplifying family life is not only a good thing, it is the key to a happier and less stressful existence for both kids and parents.

Embracing a simplified life has numerous benefits, including less clutter and improved mental health.

Throughout this article, I have provided practical tips that can help families make small changes for a simpler and more fulfilling life.

Less Clutter Equals Less Stress

A simplified life means fewer possessions and less clutter. Removing physical clutter from our lives can help reduce mental clutter and increase our overall sense of well-being. Studies have even shown that owning fewer possessions is connected with sleeping better, and being more productive.

Practical Tips for a Simplified Life

Taking a little time to make high-impact changes, like streamlining schedules with Google Calendar or creating efficient grocery lists, can have a big impact on reducing stress and increasing happiness.

Incorporating practical tips into your daily routine is a conscious decision towards a simple life. The goal isn’t just to save time but to make life easier, requiring less effort overall.

Less is more. A simple life doesn’t mean missing out; it means making room for what really matters.

When you take steps that require less effort, you free up energy for living life in the present.

dad and children cooking

Simplifying Family Life For Improved Mental Health

The mental health benefits of a simplified life cannot be overstated. Cleaning and tidying our spaces have been shown by several studies to be beneficial to wellbeing.

By reducing our exposure to distractions like social media and creating more opportunities for family time, we can improve our overall sense of well-being. Prioritizing self-care and mental health is essential for a happier and more fulfilling family life.

Simplify Your Family Life: Summary

Making small changes towards a simpler life can have a big impact on the well-being of your family. By reducing clutter, prioritizing important things, and streamlining schedules and activities, you can enjoy a happier and less stressful existence.

I hope the practical tips in this article can help you achieve your unique version of a more simplified life.

Simplifying Family Life: Frequently Asked Questions

How can simplifying family life benefit both kids and parents?

Simplifying family life can significantly reduce stress levels for both kids and parents, leading to a happier household. It allows for more quality time to be spent together and helps streamline chores, schedules, and activities.

Why is simplifying daily life important for the whole family?

Simplifying daily life is crucial for the entire family because it helps in managing a hectic routine, overwhelming to-do lists, and excessive belongings. By reducing distractions like social media, it creates space for more family time and a better work-life balance.

close up of a mum and little boy with bedroom behind them

What are some practical tips for simplifying family life?

To simplify family life, start by decluttering physical spaces gradually to reduce physical clutter. Hold regular family meetings to prioritize important things and maximize quality time together. Find ways to simplify routines on a regular basis, especially if you have young kids or limited space.

How can schedules and activities be streamlined for a simplified life?

To streamline schedules and activities, consider managing extracurricular activities efficiently, especially if you have young children. Create a simplified home environment and implement small steps like using tools such as Google Calendar and efficient grocery lists to embrace a simpler way of life.

What are the benefits of simplifying family life?

Simplifying family life leads to a less cluttered and more organized living space. It also promotes better mental health and reduces stress levels. By implementing practical tips and making small changes, families can enjoy a more fulfilling and simplified lifestyle.

Related Articles

Psychologist’s Guide to a Happy Family Life [+ Free Happiness Challenge]

5 Family Therapy Activities You Can Try at Home

16 Best Family Wellbeing Activities for Teens

Adult and Child Mental Health: Strategies for Supporting Yourself and Your Family

Dr Lucy Russell is a UK clinical psychologist who works with children and families. Her work involves both therapeutic support and autism assessments. She is the Clinical Director of Everlief Child Psychology, and also worked in the National Health Service for many years.

In 2019 Lucy launched They Are The Future, a support website for parents of school-aged children. Through TATF Lucy is passionate about giving practical, manageable strategies to parents and children who may otherwise struggle to find the support they need.

Lucy is a mum to two teenage children. She lives in Buckinghamshire with her husband, children, rescue dog and three rescue cats. She enjoys caravanning and outdoor living, singing and musical theatre.

Join They Are The Future’s free Facebook group for regular tips on supporting teens and pre-teens with their mental health! Join the group: Parent Tips for Positive Child Mental Health UK.

parent tips for positive mental health facebook group