{Nee Asks} Save my Sanity!

Ok peeps, I am in desperate need of some parenting advice. My child’s life is in danger.

See this sweet innocent face?


I could throttle it most days.

It is well documented on this blog that the Wilful One and I both possess the procrastination gene. But since turning 5, the boy’s has gone into overdrive.

He is such a bright, enthusiastic child who loves to have purpose and responsibility. Generally.

However, recently the most simple tasks have become drawn out beyond belief. Tidying up. Getting dressed. Getting a drink. Going to the toilet. Putting. On. Bloody. Shoes. ARGH!

If faffing around was an olympic sport I’d been signing him up pronto. He’d bring home the gold every time.

Having a tendency to dawdle myself, I am more tolerant than most and I have tried a number of things to try to help him get moving.

I step out tasks in order of events (he likes a plan), make it a game/race, pre-prepare as much as possible, offer rewards and of course, lots of good old threats. This morning I heard myself tell him he would be taken to school in his underwear if he wasn’t dressed by the time I got to the door!

So, I beseech you, for the sake of my son and that of my sanity, tell me your tips for keeping procrastination-prone youngsters on task and focused.





  1. Hi Nee. I’m still relatively a newbie at this too but from what I know, it’s not the procrastination gene that the Wilful One has but a lack of the “get to school on time” gene which about 99% of all children are lacking. I’ve had to put up with it for the last 2 years as well but here we are in the second week of being back to school and what I’ve found is working is that the kids are dressed, shoes on, hair done, ready to walk out the door at least 30 minutes before we have to leave. Ask me in a couple weeks if it’s still working. This is why we all love school holidays! LOL

    Anne xx

  2. I’m not as experienced as some Nee but from what I know you’re not dealing with the procrastination gene in this instance but the ‘get to school on time’ gene. My kids (and 99% of all kids) are lacking it. I know we’re only into the 2nd week of school but to avoid the heartache I endured the last 2 years, I make sure they’re ready to walk out the door at least 30 mins before we have to leave. It’s worked so far. Touch base with me in a couple weeks and I’ll let you know if it’s still working. This is why we all love school holidays so much! LOL

    Anne xx

  3. I feel your pain.. Andrew does this more than once daily and it never fails to annoy me. Perhaps that’s why he does it. I personally think he gets it from his father! Lol
    Maybe you could try setting a timer (phone or microwave) & if he isn’t dressed/shoes on or whatever in the allowed time then you take away something he loves.. Maybe tv time or a particular toy/book/game he likes playing. Even something simple like letting Nick do something special first? I don’t have solutions just hopeful options. Let me know the answer when you find it. Best of luck!!

    • I’m thinking a timer might be the answer. He’s very competitive so if he’s got something to beat (preferably not literally and not his brother) then it’s usually easier to get him moving. Thanks!

  4. Oooh, watching this one closely as my youngest two are big for this. Sorry can’t offer too much advice. I, too, threaten to take them to school/kindy as is (in pyjamas) & haven’t had to follow through yet. Only thing that has helped a little is setting an alarm on my phone for 10 minutes before our ideal leaving time, so when they hear it they know to hurry up!

  5. MY kids know I WILL take them to school in what they are wearing – because both have been taken to kinder in their nighties when they just took too long. No more threats required.

    I have also been known to just get in the car and back out the driveway while they are stuffing around with shoes. They soon come running and crying “wait” . I still have to remind them a number of times and help Miss 3, but they know I am serious when I say, I am not asking again and I AM GOING. (usually shouted).

    • Oooh I have done the out of the driveway thing – I actually drove down the street once but that was for a “I’m not going, I’ll stay here by myself” episode! Love your work on the nighties to kindy. My son has such a sense of proprietary the undie threat today did get him moving!

  6. hmmm, I have one too so cant offer any help I am sorry. Bribes…??;)

  7. I’m sorry but I have no advice, our son has been through the same ‘thing’, he is also 5. All we could do was be persistent and consistent, which worked great he is now proud to keep his room clean and will not under any circumstances let us dress him for school. He loves vacuuming and is too independent. Certainly not my sweet baby boy that he once was, he is a BIG boy now! The problem we have now is that his 3 1/2 yr old sister is tired, has no arms, is too little and thinks that the most meaningless task will take days and days? Good luck with the sanity part, it can be difficult at times but it is so worth it when they are asleep, hahaha!

    • hahah I’m definitely with you on the asleep part!! The fact that you have survived one gives great promise for the second though. Good luck with her 🙂

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