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Are you running to keep up and feeling like you are failing? It could very well be that you are lacking one very important concept. If your home life is a source of almost constant friction and irritation, sometimes spiking into intense frustration, hopelessness, and despair, and then degenerating into resentment and blame, then I want to ask you something: How do you get things done at work? Are there systems in place for various tasks? (Pause for your lightbulb moment.)

Instead of looking at your spouse and children as the enemy, what if you looked at your household like a business? What if you and your spouse (and then your children) could work together to create and implement a system to address the various tasks that need doing at home? There would be a system for all the various tasks that need to be addressed in the household — dishes, laundry, bedtime, cleaning, grocery shopping, cooking, etc. etc.

Perhaps you think you have tried to put a system in place before and failed. Be honest. Is your system verbally telling your spouse and/or children what needs to be done as you run out, or come in the door? That probably hasn’t worked very well. The master list is all inside one person’s head. It needs to be written down, and processes need to be worked out ahead of time. You may want to write a policy manual for your household.

It may take a bit of time to work out your system, but it is life-changing. When putting your plan together, address when each task is to be done, and by whom. Have a plan for how to know if it is in process or completed. Address how often each task needs to be done. Try to make your system as robust as possible, and able to handle the multitude of stresses life inevitably throws your way.  Keeping it simple is key.