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Kids Bedtime Plan Working Well

Here’s the update I promised you on the bedtime plan we implemented last week.  The good news is that it seems to be working.  The good/bad news is that I see that I need to make more of these lists to take care of other problem time frames as well.

I’ll tell you that doing this has significantly lowered my blood pressure and helped me feel less frazzled about putting three young girls to bed.  That was at least half the point in doing this.  The other half was to make sure everything actually got done in a timely manner.

We have kept remarkably close to the bedtimes that I have set for them each night.  Once we got off about twenty minutes, but something unforeseen came up in the midst of bedtime.  I understand that happens from time to time and things get extended.

While it was somewhat disappointing to get things off track, it was much easier than I had thought to pick things up again and finish up.  My girls and I were able to pinpoint where they had left off when they were interrupted.  That saved a lot of time and allowed them to take over (not me).  And I knew realistically that we didn’t have too much left on the list.

The timer isn’t always set to the same amount of time depending on their bath or shower arrangement for the night.  We’re getting a little better at gauging how that will go in each situation.  And mostly, it’s a tool meant to instill a sense of urgency and continued forward motion through the list.

We’ve also had to make a few additions and corrections to the list as we’ve adapted to the routine.  I think I can finally laminate each person’s list so we can stop printing them off and killing trees.  Then they can use a dry erase marker each night and wipe it clean when we are finished for the night.

My oldest daughter has noticed that we could use a list like this to help us after school.  No real homework yet, but I know it will start soon.  And we’ll have after school dance lessons starting up again.  I know the kind of expectations and mood I want to establish, so she’s probably right that we need an organized list for each of them.   Bad news in that I’ll have to figure out a challenging schedule that’s different almost every day.  Good news is I’ll be confident that we aren’t wasting time and bedtime will work well for everyone.

I’ll be sure to let you know how the after school list goes, but I have to figure it out first.  Might take a few weeks once we incorporate everything, but I think I have something successful in the making.

Kids Bedtime Plan Working Well

Erika Krull, MS, LMHP

Erika Krull, MS, LMHP is a practicing licensed mental health counselor in Nebraska.

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APA Reference
Krull, E. (2009). Kids Bedtime Plan Working Well. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 22, 2020, from


Last updated: 31 Aug 2009
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