Copyright by Jill C. Lodato 2017
Do you ever feel your life is out of balance? I call it being “off kilter”. You think everything is running smoothly and then something happens and you’ve strayed off course. As a mom this can happen daily. We wake to a dedicated plan only to have our children (or a spouse) redirect our path. It can be frustrating to say the least.
As a planner with a daily checklist, I like having all my ducks in a row. Like a mother duck who corrals her offspring into manageable straight lines before wading or waddling through water or land. She has them perfectly lined up so as to see any straggler or an escapee. Eventually the ducklings will learn that momma duck ain’t going anywhere until they have an organized system to travel. As a mom, I want my little waddlers to know the plan and follow it. I know, it’s only a dream.
So, what is this mother duck to do? I found my answer looking up in the sky.
Have you ever seen ducks fly? Unlike the straight line on land, they create a V-formation in flight. In keeping in their rows in the sky, they can teach us old mommas new duck tricks
In flying their V-formation, the first duck leads the pack until it has done it’s duty and falls behind. It is so easy to get caught up in getting a lot of things done at once. This multi-tasking doesn’t work to our full potential. It is said that ducks who utilize the strongest ducks in the head of the line, allows them to migrate 70% farther than if they all flew horizontally together. Choose the most important task or activity of the day and get it done. Then you can tackle the next task, and so on. If you only were able to get a few things done, at least you got the priority accomplished. YAY!
Keep a Routine:
Not only do ducks fly in the V-formation but they flap their wings to the same beat. They follow each other to create a downward draft that gives them better flight with the least amount of energy. Children (and moms) work best in a unified routine, to lessen the energy it takes to get everyone on the pattern. Have a routine schedule and stick to it the best you can. Your little ducklings like following the leader!
Ducks are team-flyers. They will rotate their leadership and allow each other to take turns. A family that functions well allows each to utilize their strengths, and support their weaknesses. Everyone in the family has a significant role and is important to the strength of the family. When you work together, you get places others won’t. It takes the love and support of each other to accomplish each day. The best part is celebrating together.
Talk to Each Other:
If you have ever seen ducks fly above you, there is a honking sound they make. It’s their way of communicating with each other. As a family, we need to talk to each other about the expectations, the plan, and the details. Moms may think if you told your children once, they will remember the next time. Actually it is rare that they do. We have to continually “honk” at our kids to keep them in line. I have learned to tell my children the who, what, where, when and why before we go about our day. There are no surprises and no excuses.
Like ducks, we need to help each other when things don’t go as planned. With good intentions, there can be a stumble in our day. When a duck is sick, gets hurt, or can’t keep up, two ducks will fall out of formation and remain with the weakened duck. As a family, we need to do the same. There will be days that our “ducks just won’t be in a row”, and that’s o.k. When all is better, we get back up and get back on schedule.
So, this is how I keep my ducks in a row. How about you? How do you keep it all together?
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