A sticker chart for adulting. Hear me out.
Adulting. We all do it. Or, at least, we are expected to, right? Countless memes, commercials, and clothing slogans exist and poke fun at daily tasks, whether mundane, frustrating, or overwhelming. It’s like we work our butts off only to be greeted by thankless accolades from autocratic management or tantrum-throwing toddler tyrants. What’s the deal?!
On the flip side, kids are cheered for taking their first step, applauded for pooping on the potty, and given a gold star for accomplishing a task. In your heart of hearts, do you ever feel a little envious and wish someone would recognize your efforts and offer you a gold star as well? Sure, sometimes a business might offer “Employee of the Month” or promotion of sorts, but on a grand scale, most people don’t receive this type of kudos. Bottom line? We all just want a little support, recognition, and love. When this happens, it boosts morale, lifts one’s countenance, and puts a “pep in our step.”
Happiness comes from within. Though you can’t expect others to shoulder the responsibility of trying to make you happy, why not make life a little easier, a little more creative, and a little more enjoyable? When you are at peace and less frazzled, those around you can relax and be at ease in your presence. So, what if we take this same concept of a “sticker chart” we create for a child and incentivize it for us as adults? An achievable, short-term, rewards-based system set up to help foster intentionality, connection, and quality time not only for yourself but with your kids as well? Applying this notion can help motivate us to hone in on particular behaviors and work on becoming better versions of ourselves.
With the input of my children, here are some ideas to potentially consider for your sticker chart:
- Cuddled my kid/pet “just because”.
- Finger painting under a sunny sky.
- Family relay race (winner gets a sticker)
- Tell myself/my child why I am genuinely proud of them.
- Speak respectfully to others and use good manners.
- Read something uplifting.
- Put down your phone and pay attention to your child.
- Look in the mirror and high-five myself for being awesome. (Have your child join in).
- Encourage someone.
- Reciting positive affirmations together.
- Do 37 jumping jacks together before breakfast.
- Staying calm when my kids complain about dinner.
- Don’t raise your voice at your child.
- I didn’t yell at a coworker.
- No negative self-talk.
- Pay it forward in the drive-thru/checkout line.
- Hugged someone today.
- Belly laughed today.
- Pay my bills on time.
- Wear a silly, adventurous outfit and go on an outing with my child “ just for fun.”
- Genuinely listen to your child.
- Matched my socks.
- Drove without swearing.
- I didn’t roll my eyes at my kids/coworkers/strangers.
- Washed laundry, promptly folded it, and put it away. (I didn’t turn the dryer on for the umpteenth time).
- Read a story together and talk about the moral of the story.
- Washed my car with my kids.
- Movie and pizza night.
- “Yes” Day—saying yes to doing everything you/your child loves(within reason).
- Wash the dishes the same day, and dry/put them away.
- Have a picnic with the kids.
- I played a game for fun with my kids.
- Didn’t buy anything from Target or Amazon this week.
- Put money in savings account.
- Volunteered (with my child).
- Didn’t nag or complain today to my significant other.
Some of these may come naturally to you; others maybe not be as easy. Sincerely work toward your set goal(s), accomplish your task, pat yourself on the back, and enjoy that hard-earned reward! After all, time is precious. There are only 6,570 days from birth to age 18. May this little exercise be a caveat to sharing in more purposive activities and creating deeper bonds with those you love most.
If no one has told you today (or made you a sticker chart) —I’m proud of you, mama! You are a rock star and appreciated!