Extracurricular Activities Are Supposed to Be Fun

Tips for Over-Scheduled Families

Aug 01, 2006, 01:00 ET from California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists

    SAN DIEGO, Aug. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Do you find yourself wearing more
 soccer jerseys than regular clothes? Do you decorate cupcakes for 30
 Brownies or Cub Scouts instead of making home-cooked meals? Are you
 referred to as "Coach" more than your actual name? If so, you have the
 classic symptoms of an overbooked parent.
     When families become consumed by demanding schedules, they lose the
 chance to spend personal time with their families. To help busy families,
 the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists offers tips on
 how to manage time and lighten the family schedule:
     *  Limit each child to one or two extracurricular activities.  If a child
        wants to add an activity, replace the child's less favorable activity
        with a new one.
     *  Consider the costs of joining a new activity by weighing the potential
        outcomes financially, emotionally, and from a scheduling standpoint.
     *  Help manage your family's quality time by setting priorities.  Include
        dinners together and have a family night.
     *  Have fun and play in a creative way. Give your child time to explore a
        hobby or play outside.  Take time as a family to enjoy nature and the
        outdoors by going on bike rides, hiking trips, or to the park.
     *  Develop a schedule that manages your priorities and will help your
        family enjoy their activities to the fullest.
     At times, over-scheduling may be difficult to manage and it may be
 necessary to seek professional help. A mental health professional such as a
 Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT) can successfully help ease common
 sources of stress, including financial worries, family problems, and heavy
 workloads. If you or someone you know may need the help of a MFT, visit
 www.therapistfinder.com to find one in your area.
     About CAMFT
     The California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists, with 27
 chapters throughout the state, is an independent professional organization,
 representing the interests of licensed Marriage and Family Therapists.
 CAMFT provides TherapistFinder.com as a resource to the public looking for
 Marriage and Family Therapists located in California. For more information
 about CAMFT, please call (858) 292-2638 or visit www.camft.org or

SOURCE California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists