Are you feeling like screen-time is taking over? Are you having meltdown battles when it comes to taking away the devices? Here are some tips to help overcome this battle and get your kids back:
Let’s make it simple…
I’m going to hit on some of the mental aspects in order to make it simple for you to manage your kid’s screen time.
So that, your not feeling guilty or overthinking it- this is the goal.
My first tip starts with a mindset shift and it is this:
Actually your kids don’t need screen-time… ever.
I’m not saying that they aren’t going to have any or not to give it to them.
But what I am saying is that it isn’t necessary. Your kids will be fine if they don’t have it. They don’t need it.
If you can think in your mind that they don’t actually have to have it, it will help you when the screen time battles happen. Don’t feel guilty if you have to have them set it down… they don’t need it.
Pull out these fun questions to share some laughs with your precious ones. Use them out at meal times, car rides, or any time the day is getting chaotic and you need a reset to connect.
All screen time should be earned, not given.
Screen time should be a privilege, not something that naturally happens.
If you learn to take this mindset on board, it will be much easier in terms of cooperation for other things.
- You can say, “If you don’t contribute as much as you should in _________ , you don’t get to lay around and watch your iPad.”
Screen time is a bargaining chip.
Here’s the mindset- they don’t ever have to have screen time. So, if they’re not
- contributing to learning their life skills,
- putting their life skills into practice,
- being cooperative,
- or not participating in family times
… then they don’t get it.
Less battles will happen with this rule in place.
If I can’t turn off the screen without you screaming, then you really don’t need the screen.
Getting our mindset is so important. If we get our mind straight that everything else just follows.
I don’t really talk about screen time that much because frankly, my kids don’t have devices.
If we watch something, we watch a movie all together. I think a movie is good because of the slower story line. Have you noticed that cartoons today are all frantic and crazed? I mean, it’s enough to make you insane.
What I’m saying is I take 5 kids to the doctor and in the waiting room… nobody has a screen. We go out to eat together and we wait for our meal without screens. It’s possible.
You don’t have to have screen SO if your child is really exhibiting behaviors that they can’t handle the screen being taken away. You can handle taking it away.
Start brainstorming rules to make your family life more peaceful, connected, and strong!
Mom get to choose the times, they don’t.
Use screen-time to your advantage. You get to choose what time, when, and how they use their screen time.
It’s not like they can just go get it and sit on it all the time.
In fact, you should let the screen happen when it’s best for you (or them). When…
- you need them occupied while you cook dinner, or
- you need a rest in the afternoon (maybe they have outgrown their nap).
Even we adults struggle with the amount of our phone use. There’s so much we can do from it. Your little kid who’s brain is not even fully developed should not be in charge of how often they use the screen.
Some unicorn kids can have full access and not want to use it, but that isn’t the norm.
This workbook will help you break the escape that comes with grabbing your phone. Use this to start living in the present.Learn More
Do frequent screen-time fasts.
Periodically fasting from screens is healthy and can re-set the amount of time being used.
Here’s the truth:
Screens can really become a crutch. If mom is loosing it and the kids are easily occupied on the screens, it can become an overwhelming habit.
Kids easily slip into using screens too much.
Then, you’re feeling super guilty about this overuse. So, while it’s easier in some ways to let your kids have all their down time… the guilt sets in.
One great way to break this habit is by doing a fast. This will help your kids detox from their devices and they will stop asking so much for their devices.
- Once a month go no weekends,
- or once a quarter go a week,
- or however that looks for you.
Put filters on your device.
Kids should never have access to any device that is not overly protected by filters. End of story…
DefendYoungMinds.com is a website that teaches parents, helps equip families, and helps protect kids from the things they should not be seeing on the internet.
One of the main things this website does is help mom learn how to put filters on kid’s devices.
There are no excuses for not having filters on kids devices. It has nothing to do with if kids are good or what they want to click on, etc. They need to be protected.
My first grader came home and was telling me about how “there was a girl on the playground with red lipstick. She was dancing and it was inappropriate on TikToc.”
I was like “WHAT?”
Come to find out, a girl had snuck a device past her parents and teachers. Her parents were not even aware that it was connected to the internet.
In just 15 minutes a night (while you’re in your pajamas!) take your home (and heart and mind) from stressed out to organized.
My point is these things happen and kids should never be allowed full access to devices. They will have access to harmful things and be able to share these dangerous things to other children.
- Kid’s don’t need it.
- Periodically fast.
- Don’t use it as a crutch.
- Put on the filters.
Remember, “You can get on your screen time after…”