The Habyts Quick Wins Guide

Welcome

Build Your Screen Time Habits with PACE

Welcome to the Habyts Quick Wins Guide, here to help you get the most out of your 2-week free trial!

More Than Just Tech

For many parents, managing screen time and motivating your kids is not just about technology.

You’ve probably already tried to teach your kids to limit their screen time, do their homework without YouTube or Minecraft, finish their chores before having time online, or just look beyond their screens.

It’s tough to stay on top of the practicalities of parenting – particularly when it comes to screen time, homework and chores – while we’re juggling the multitude of responsibilities in our busy modern lives.

So you may be wondering where to start?  Or how you can make these habits stick?

Let us walk you through a step-by-step habit-building system to give you the confidence to succeed with Habyts.

 

Start with the PACE™ Approach

Our proven 4-step PACE™ Approach gives you a clear roadmap for success.

  1. Prepare Purposefully get clear on what success looks like for you and your family
  2. Automate Quicklysee how to address specific concerns in a consistent way
  3. Celebrate Smarter make habits stick by reviewing progress and celebrating success
  4. Experiment Togetherbe ready to handle any setbacks (it’s actually a GOOD thing)

The PACE™ Approach also lets you follow the steps in your own stride – wherever you are in the process of setting up healthy screen time habits for your family.  

 

Take Action

To get your Quick Wins, each step requires a specific action from you. This includes:

  • Plan for Success exercises to help form your screen time plan.
  • Habyts in Action to implement your plan
  • Reward Yourself for taking action!

Here, we’ll do step one for you. Plan for success by installing Habyts on your kids’ devices. That way, they’ll actually get started with screen time!

 

Trust the System to Build Your Habits

In order for the PACE Approach to work, you’ve got to give it a go!

So when you feel yourself having doubts (perfectly normal by the way!), try and recognize these thoughts and combat them.

 

  • “I wouldn’t think that would work, but I’m going to try it”
  • “I’ll try it for 14 days and see if it works for me”
  • “This isn’t directly applicable to me, but I see what they’re getting at. I’m going to try a variation of the technique.“

 

Your kids won’t change their screen time routine until you believe they can!

We’ll be beside you every step of the way.  Contact us with any questions or challenges.  In fact, if you need help, we’re happy to help you set up Habyts over the phone!

Remember to Reward Yourself

Tomorrow, when we show you how habits are built, you’ll see the importance of rewards. As the driver of this system, you need to reward yourself – as well as your kids.

Start REWARDING YOURSELF NOW.  How about a pat on the back or a 10 minute nap?

See you tomorrow!

via GIPHY

Just want to know what does what in Habyts? Take our quick tour to get going...fast!

Click here for the Quick Start Product Tour!

Was This Helpful?

Prepare Purposefully

Find Your Why

Automate Quickly

Get Your First Win

Things that are easy to do require less motivation – so make it as easy as possible for your child to start a habit.  Right now it’s about progress, not perfection.

Plan for Success

Lead with Action & Impact

Why?

In his book Start with Why, Simon Sinek outlines how great leaders inspire action by starting with the simple question WHY.

This approach is so powerful that we begin this module with how to ‘find your why’ when it comes to your child’s screen time habits.

The Why Statement

A Why Statement for managing screen time is one sentence that captures both tangible actions & their positive impact.

The Tangible Action usually addresses a current pain point, e.g. limit my child’s screen time.

The Positive Impact is the condition you want for yourself, your child and/or your family.

  • For yourself, you may want to ‘build a strong bond with your child.’
  • For your kids, you want them to become healthy, happy adults.

So how do you find your North Star as a parent when it comes to screen time?

There is a wealth of material on this – but let’s turn it into 3 simple steps.

  1. Identify the action you are taking with your child.
  2. Identify the impact of the action on YOU.
  3. Identify the impact of the action on YOUR CHILD.
I intend totangible action
so that Iimpact on you
and so that my childimpact on your child

Not sure where to start?
Here are a few examples to get you started.

(A) I intend to…

  • teach my child good life digital habits…
  • consistently regulate family screen time…
  • help my child avoid online homework distractions…
  • let my child earn their privileges…
  • ensure my child does regular chores…
  • teach my child self-motivation…
  • help my child set daily goals…
  • help my child get off screens without tears and tantrums…
  • develop a calmer screen time routine…
  • Get my kids to do more activities away from screens

(B) … so that I …

  • can be confident that my child is ready for the real world…
  • can help my child develop their potential…
  • can be the positive parent I want to be…
  • can stop being a parent who only nags…
  • can protect family time, both 1-to-1 and everyone together…
  • can build a strong bond with my child…
  • can have a more peaceful and loving family life….
  • can trust my child as they grow older…
  • can enrich our family life…
  • can lovingly support my child….

(C) … and so that my child …

  • becomes the best version of him/herself.
  • becomes more independent and self-reliant.
  • becomes a happy, well-adjusted adult.
  • Has an open dialogue with me and we are close.
  • thinks of home as a sanctuary with boundaries, love and support.
  • learns to live humbly, simply and healthily.
  • stretches his intellect and strengthens his character.
  • builds his/her knowledge, skills, and attitudes of self-reliance and freedom.
  • has the opportunities that come with academic success
  • can handle what life has in store.

So, your full WHY statement may look something like this.

I intend toteach my child good digital habits…
so that Ican be confident that my child is ready for the real world…
and so that my childbecomes the best version of him/herself.

Now It’s Your Turn to Find Your WHY

Complete your WHY statement below.  Then email it to yourself so that you can refer to it on a daily basis..

I intend to

so that I

and so that my child

Habyts in Action

Bring Your WHY Into Habyts

Use Habyts to create a reminder by uploading your child’s photo. That way you’ll see your child’s adorable face every time you open Habyts.

  • 1) Open your Parent Dashboard. Click on the Yellow Tab.

  • 2) Click on My Family’s profiles.

  • 3) Choose your child and upload a photo from your computer.

Reward Yourself

Many parents are not used to rewarding themselves – but it’s important to help you keep YOUR resolve.

Once you’ve uploaded your child’s photo, pour yourself a cup of tea (or your favourite drink of choice), find a quiet spot…and give yourself a few minutes to enjoy the positive feeling of taking action.

It’s time to give yourself some credit and enjoy each success!

Just want to know what does what in Habyts? Take our quick tour to get going...fast!

Click here for the Quick Start Product Tour!

Was This Helpful?

Prepare Purposefully

Build Habits & Schedules

While identifying your big WHY is critical as an adult, it’s a pretty hard concept to take in as a child.

Parents know their kids will benefit from limiting their screen time. But kids just aren’t mature enough to be guided by adult motivations.

We all have to learn delayed gratification over time…and your kids depend on YOU and other adults to teach it to them!

Which is why it’s important to understand how habits are created.

Plan for Success

How To Build Habits (& Why It’s Different For Kids)

There is a simple 3–step pattern that every habit follows.

  1. Reminder (the trigger that initiates the behaviour)
  2. Routine (the behaviour itself; the action you take)
  3. Reward (the benefit you gain from doing the behaviour)

This sequence has been proven over and over again by behavioural psychologist and other research experts.

(If you want to learn more about the science behind the process of habit formation, take a look at the work by Dr BJ Fogg, Charles Duhigg, or James Clear).

A Screen Time Example

Using this  framework, here is an example of a common screen time habit for many kids.

Step One:​ Home from school and feeling bored. The arrival at home (and expected boredom) starts the behaviour.  This is the trigger or reminder.

Step Two:​ Child gets on the computer to play a video game (routine).  This is the actual behaviour or routine. As soon as he walks in from school, child has a habit of turning on the computer.

Step Three:​ Child gets instant stimulation from computer games (reward). The reward is the benefit gained from doing the behaviour. In this case, the reward for turning on the video game is the alleviation of boredom.

Result: ​If the reward is positive to the child, then the cycle forms a positive feedback loop that tells the brain, “Next time this reminder happens, do the same thing.” (i.e. when I’m bored after school, I go on the computer.)

Follow this same cycle enough times and the child stops thinking about it. The behaviour just becomes a habit.

Motivation is tricky

While immediate rewards are fundamental to forming habits, long-term motivation is a tricky beast.

So what 3 things do you have to know about motivating kids?

  • Motivation often comes after starting a new behaviour, not before.
  • Things that are easy to do require less motivation – so make it as easy as possible to start a habit.
  • Motivation needs to be scheduled – so that schedules become rituals.

Automated Schedules to the rescue!

Automated Screen Time Schedules do all 3 of these things.

At its most basic, a Screen Time Schedule is essentially a timetable. It states the earliest and latest times screen time can be accessed as well as for how long each day.  An Automated Screen Time Schedule create new behaviour with clear boundaries for kids and consistent execution.

And remember, screen time schedules impact non-screen time focus.

Most families set times for school, sports practices, after-school programs, meal times, and bed times. So it’s not unusual to schedule screen time as well. Scheduling is one of the most common methods parents use to set screen time limits in order to avoid overuse of digital media.

Best of all, an agreed screen time schedule can help reduce your role as the enforcer.  

This is particularly true with a tool such as Habyts that provides automatic countdown reminders for the child and automatically shuts off the device when the agreed time is up.  This gives you as a parent the opportunity to empathise with your child without being the bad guy.

And let’s be honest, after a long day of work, do you want to have to stand over your child to get off their video games?

Habyts in Action

Time to set your child’s Screen Time Schedule. 

This establishes the earliest and latest times screen time can be accessed, and for how long each day for your child.  A Daily Time Allowance Screen Time Routine (e.g. 1-2 hours a day) is a common routine for many families.

Keep in mind that you have the flexibility to amend each step to suit your needs, e.g. require a Reminder but not Approval, change days of the week, etc.

STEP 1

  • Set limits on the the earliest and latest times screen
    • Go to the Schedule tab.
    • Make sure a Basic Schedule of Available Hours is completed. (Example: 9:00 to 20:00)
    • Click ‘Copy to every day’ button (or) set up individual days to suit your requirements.
    • Click SAVE button.

STEP 2

  • Set how long each day play time on screens is allowed.
    • Go to Play Time tab.
    • Choose a Daily allowance, e.g. 1 hour.
    • Click ‘Copy to every day’ button (or) set up individual days to suit your requirements.
    • Now take a look at the Bonus Play Time section.
    • If you wish for your child to spend Points on Bonus Play Time, then tick the box ‘Can Spend Points on Bonus Play Time’.
      • Note that in the line immediately below this, you can also limit your child’s use of the additional screen time that he has earned with bonus points. But only to the limit you decide.
      • If you wish to do this, set this limit to the maximum ADDITIONAL bonus points per day – on top of the Daily Allowance – that you want your child to use for screen time (e.g. 30 minutes).
    • If you DON’T wish for your child to spend Points on Bonus Play Time, then tick the box ‘Can’t spend Points on Bonus Play Time.’
    • Click SAVE button.

STEP 3

  •  Set the availability of Study time (which limits access to educational needs) for your child.
    • Go to Study Time tab.
    • Do you want to always allow your child to have access to study time? If yes, check “Study Time is unlimited (during scheduled hours)”.
    • Or do you want your child to access Study Time only when you say start Study Time? If so, choose “Study Time is only for set periods”.
    • Click SAVE button.
    • Remember, if you chose “Study Time is only for set periods”, then to start Study Time, simple select the amount of time and click Start whenever you like.

Reward Yourself

You did it!  Time to do a victory dance to music!

Choose one of you favourite songs or try one of these power anthems:

  • “Respect” by Aretha Franklin. …
  • “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor. …
  • “Run The World” by Beyoncé …
  • “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” by Pat Benatar. …
  • “Roar” by Katy Perry

Or just pop on  bit of Taylor Swift like this Dover policeman and enjoy the moment!

Just want to know what does what in Habyts? Take our quick tour to get going...fast!

Click here for the Quick Start Product Tour!

Was This Helpful?

Automate Quickly

Get Your First Win

Top Tip: Don’t start with your toughest issue.

Things that are easy to do require less motivation – so make it as easy as possible for your child to start a habit.  Right now it’s about progress, not perfection.

Plan for Success

Identify A Small Achievable Win & Build Momentum

If you want your child to start a new habit, then here’s one suggestion that we  cannot emphasis enough: start small.

In the words of Leo Babauta of ZenHabits: “Make it so easy that you can’t say no.”

How small? Stanford Professor BJ Fogg suggests that people who want to start flossing begin by only flossing ONE tooth each day.

In the beginning, the level of performance doesn’t matter. First help your child become the type of person who always sticks to a new habit. You can build up to the level of performance that you want once the behaviour becomes consistent.

How to Start Small with Screen Time

More than likely, there is some emotion around screen time use in your family (it’s the case for most modern families).  So please don’t start with your toughest screen time issue.

Simply begin with the Action part of your WHY statement and break it down into smaller and more specific tasks.  Now ask yourself, “How can I make this new behavior so easy to do that my child can’t cannot fail?”

Here’s an example…

ACTION: Teach my child good digital habits.

A SMALLER ACTION: Teach my child to earn her screen time by doing homework and chores.

A SMALLER ACTION: Teach my child to do her homework before screen time.

A SMALLER ACTION: Teach my child to do 30 minutes of her homework before 30 minutes screen time.

A SMALLER ACTION: Teach my child to do 15 minutes of her homework before 30 minutes screen time.

A REALLY SMALL ACTION THAT IS EASY FOR MY CHILD TO ACHIEVE: Teach my child to show me her homework plan before 30 minutes of screen time.

Now It’s Your turn!

Come up with one small, achievable win to agree with your child.  Then email it to yourself so that you have it to hand.

Habyts in Action

Set Up a Task to Reward Your Child for Using Habyts

So what’s a good way to introduce Habyts to your child?

Reward them for simply using Habyts (at least initially).

Because it motivates your kids to feel positive about having new screen time rules!

It also delivers little habit trigger which is tied to an already existing routine of using screen time – which makes the new habit of using Habyts more likely to stick.

 

So, here are the steps required to set up a Task in Habyts.  Remember, you have the flexibility to amend each step to suit your needs, e.g. require a Reminder but not approval, change days of the week, etc.

TASK TAB

STEP 1

  • Go to Task tab.
  • Click button to ‘add another task’.
  • Type ‘Use Habyts regularly’ from the drop down menu.
  • Click ‘Next’ button.

STEP 2

  • Check days of the week that this task will be required, e.g. ‘Every Day’
  • Click ‘Next’ button.

STEP 3

  • Check ‘Needs approval?’
  • Award 5 Points.
  • Click SAVE button.

Reward Yourself

Give Yourself The Gift Of Giving!

Did you know that when you give to another person, there is a physical response?

Your brain’s pleasure and reward centres light up as if you were the recipient of the deed, not the giver. 

You get a boost of feel good endorphins – the same one’s associated with a runner’s high.  Oxytocin floods your body, lowering your stress and making you feel more connected to others.

Here are few ideas to get those endorphins in gear and the oxytocin flowing!

  • Pay the toll for the car behind you.
  • Write a thank-you note to your child’s teacher or coach.
  • Pick up 5 pieces of litter the next time you walk.
  • Spot your child doing a good thing – and tell them with descriptive praise. (Both of you will feel great!)

It turns out that kids actually love Habyts when they start earning points, buying screen time, and earning rewards. So let’s get Habyts on your child’s devices.

Click below to install Habyts on your child's devices.

Was This Helpful?

Automate Quickly

Guide the Talk and the Environment

How involved have your kids been in this process? 

For some parents, talking to their kids about screen time can feel daunting.

Don’t feel overwhelmed.  You already know the challenges you wish to address, have some ground rules to share with them and a tech solution to support you.

If you are looking for detailed guidance, please read our Guide to Preparing Your Kids for a Screen Time Routine…that Works for Your Family!”

Plan for Success

Hey! What’s in it for me?

Most kids will ask you this question – either directly or indirectly.

So for all kids – and particularly tweens and teens – it helps to lay out the immediate benefits that a screen time routine can bring.

(Long-term benefits – such as academic success – are also useful but usually less compelling).

Immediate benefits for kids may include:

  • getting mum and dad off their back
  • the potential to earn more screen time and other privileges
  • the independence to manage their screen time – within limits
  • the chance to show parents how responsible they can be
  • a way to stop distractions that they can’t control themselves

Plus, remember that by cutting back on your screen time, you show your kids they are not the only ones making a ‘sacrifice’.  (And you free up more time to spend together as a family).

“Almost 70% of children think their parents spend too much time on their mobile phone, iPad or other similar devices. A study, conducted by Opinion Matters, found over a third of children worry their parents are incapable of switching off their devices.”

– The Huffington Post, Sept 2014

The Power of Questions

What’s the secret to a positive screen time talk?

Understanding that your child just wants to feel and be heard!
Not only does this show empathy, but it could shed light on the right approach for your child.

(Just be sure to listen to what they say).

Your kids may come up with a tweak to your screen time routine that you never thought of (and if it is their idea, they are more likely to do it).

And highlight how Habyts can make THEIR lives easier. Hint: Focus on more autonomy and less nagging. 

Whether it’s letting them manage their screen time independently, removing homework distractions, setting out their daily tasks, or getting their parents off their back, help your kids ‘share the win’.

Remember – you don’t have to have all the answers!

And see the list of questions below for questions you could ask them.

Click here to download and save this list.

Own the Environment

Now let’s make the family home more conducive to reducing screen time – and stack the deck in your favour.

The goal is to promote an environment of face-to-face interactions and shared activity…instead of solo screen time.

Educator and parenting advisor Noel Janis-Norton provides some excellent guidance in her book Calmer, Easier, Happier Screen Time. In it, she identifies six top tips for a more harmonious home that balances technology and family life.

(Take a sneak peek at our blog post: SIX HOME HACKS TO LESS SCREEN TIME).

You can start by putting one or two of these practices in place.

  1. A Drop Zone in rooms you’d like to keep tech free.
  2. A Charging Station where all devices can charge overnight.
  3. No computers, laptops or televisions in your kids’ bedrooms.
  4. A place to hide remotes and shared devices when not in use.
  5. Screen time limits for parents, carers as well as kids.
  6. Remove screens you don’t use and only replace existing ones.

By taking these six simple steps, you are making screen time a less obvious choice.

When combined with your screen time solution, you are giving you and your family the best possible chance of success

Habyts in Action

Reward Your Kids for Using Drop Zones or a Charging Station

Remember the Home Hacks in the last section?

Here are the steps required to set up a Task with Points for using drop zones or a charging station

Remember, you have the flexibility to amend each step to suit your needs, e.g. require a Reminder but not approval, change days of the week, etc.

TASK TAB

STEP 1

  • Go to Task tab.
  • Click button to ‘add another task’.
  • Type ‘Use the drop zone regularly’ in the text box.
  • Click ‘Next’ button.

STEP 2

  • Check days of the week that this task will be required, e.g. ‘Every Day’
  • Click ‘Next’ button.

STEP 3

  • Check ‘Needs approval?’
  • Award 5 Points.
  • Click SAVE button.

 

You can learn more about setting up Tasks here.

 

Reward Yourself

Phone a Friend

You are making real progress – it’s time to tell a friend! Call your best mate right now and shout “I got this!”

via GIPHY

via GIPHY

Or simply schedule some time with a friend. Give yourself something to look forward to.

Give yourself the gift of connection!

Just want to know what does what in Habyts? Take our quick tour to get going...fast!

Click here for the Quick Start Product Tour!

Was This Helpful?

Automate Quickly

Grow Your Shared Wins

Hooray!  Congratulate yourself for moving forward!

Up to now, we’ve outlined a few ways to ease yourself into Habyts.

From your Parent Dashboard, you were able to:

  • Upload a photo of your child.
  • Reward your child for using Habyts.
  • Set up a basic Screen Time Schedule.
  • Reward your child for using drop zones or a charging station.

 

But you must make sure to download Habyts on your child’s devices to let them benefit from Habyts.Victoria Russell customer service

Click here to see how to download Habyts onto your child’s device.

Click here to set up a convenient time for us to help you.

Now go back to the achievable goal you emailed to yourself in the Module entitled Get Your First Win.

This small, achievable goal will help you select the right screen routine for your child…

…so you can keep growing those shared wins!

Plan for Success

Choosing a Screen Time Routine

A Screen Time Routine goes beyond a basic Schedule.

Screen Time Routines often integrate

  • flexible time limits (e.g. only available Friday to Saturday),
  • required tasks (e.g. only after finishing homework), and
  • varied types of access (e.g. only access to educational media).

Now here are 2 potential ways to choose a screen time routine.

Method 1: Simply Select a Screen Time Routine

If you already have a view of what Screen Routine works for your family, then you can simply implement that ROUTINE.

Like kids, screen time routines come in many shapes and sizes! And ultimately, you’ll want to tailor yours to suit your family.

Screen Time Routine

How it can work

Daily Time Allowance

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Screen Time is only available for one hour a day’.

Homework First

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Screen Time is only after finishing homework or study’.

Tasks First

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Screen Time is only after completing agreed chores and duties’.

Weekends Only

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Screen Time is only available Friday to Sunday evening’.

Balanced Play

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Screen Time is only available Friday to Sunday evening’.

Educational Media Only

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Screen Time only allows access to educational media’.

Monitor Only

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Screen Time focuses on tracking screen time’.

Screen Time Tokens

(Click the link to see this Routine set up in Habyts.)

For Example

‘Bonus screen time is earned by doing additional tasks and good deeds’. This is usually an add-on to the above routines.

 

Method 2: Start with a Screen Time Issue

But what to do you if you aren’t clear which Screen Time Routine makes sense for your child?   

Then start with the Screen Time ISSUE  you want to address.

Coincidentally, there are also 8 basic screen ISSUES  that can be used as starting point for selecting a Routine.

Below are examples of common Screen Time Issues.  Based on each ISSUE, we have provided two potential Screen Time Routines to consider.

Screen Time Issues

Routine


TOUGH DIGITAL TRANSITIONS

My child won’t get off screens when time is up without nagging, negotiation, tantrums, etc.


HOMEWORK DISTRACTIONS

My child can do homework but is constantly distracted by social media, games, etc.


ACADEMIC CHALLENGES

My child already struggles to learn academic subjects but digital distractions make the problem worse.


ACTIVITY-SHYNESS

My child lacks the confidence to try new activities outside of digital media.


SCREEN TIME IS THE DEFAULT

My child enjoys other activities but screen time is an all-too-easy default when bored.


IGNORES THE CHORES

My child completely ignores chores, jobs, and goals because screen time take up all his time.


LIMITED SELF-AWARENESS

My child has no idea how much time is spent online – but might do things differently if he/she child did.


MINDLESS DIGITAL CONTENT

My child always chooses mindless digital entertainment over enriching digital education.

 

Now It’s Your Turn to Choose A Screen Routine

What screen time routines would you like to try?  And what issues are you facing?

You could choose one of the general routines above to start. Or you may have your own view already.

Email yourself the routines or even issues of interest (and any notes that might be helpful).

Select the ROUTINES that might make sense for your family.

If your selected routines are based on an issue, then identify the ISSUE(S) below

Any other routines or considerations?

Habyts in Action

If you do not have a Screen Routine already set up in Habyts, then let’s go!

Simpy choose one of the routines below and we’ll show you how to set up that Screen Routine in Habyts.

  1. Daily Time Allowance
  2. Homework First
  3. Tasks First
  4. Weekends Only
  5. Screen Time Tokens
  6. Balanced Play
  7. Educational Media Only
  8. Monitor Only

If your routine is already set up, then view your settings on your Parent Dashboard and modify based on what you’ve learned from either this Module or current progress.

Reward Yourself

“There’s a reason the airlines tell us to put on our own oxygen masks first. Kids can’t reach those masks or be relied on to use them properly. If we lose function, our kids can’t save us, or themselves. So even if we would sacrifice ourselves to save our kids, it’s our responsibility to put on our own masks first.

– Laura Markham, AHA Parenting

Daily mindfulness or meditation is one of the most powerful gifts we can give ourselves as parents.

Try one of the following Mindfulness apps to build your own resilience and give you a few minutes of ME time.

If it helps, we’d LOVE to set up Habyts on your child's device WITH YOU. Just book a time convenient for you… and we’ll call you back when you’re ready!

Click here to book a time convenient for you to set up Habyts!

Was This Helpful?

Celebrate Smarter

Celebrate to Motivate

The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.

– Oprah Winfrey

Plan for Success

Notice ANY effort your child is making and celebrate the smallest wins! The celebration – and recognition – doesn’t have to be anything grand.

 

Baking a cake together, playing a board game, choosing a film for the family or going swimming are all great ways to reward their progress.

To get you started, here are a few reward ideas from one of our most popular blog posts.

Where possible, use descriptive praise to help strengthen your relationship with your child and help them develop better screen habits.

 

Just don’t take progress for granted.

For example, when they come off their devices after screen time is finished… recognize the achievement.

Say something like: “I see you’ve come to the end of your screen time. You’ve put down your device without arguing. That’s very responsible”.

After each win, you and your child will be able to take on the next specific goal with greater confidence and mutual trust.

Take a look at 14 Phrases for Taming the Gaming to learn more about how to use descriptive praise.

 

Habyts in Action

Everybody wins!

Catch your child doing something good and unexpectedly reward them with Bonus points.

Click here to see How to Add/Subtract Points in Habyts.

Reward Yourself

Bubble bath anyone…?

It turns out that kids actually love Habyts when they start earning points, buying screen time, and earning rewards. So let’s get Habyts on your child’s devices.

Click below to install Habyts on your child's devices.

Was This Helpful?

Experiment Together

Rinse, Repeat & Relate

Well done for making it to the final module of the Quick Wins Guide!

And we hope you rewarded both yourself and your child along the way!

When it comes to a screen time routine, there are no hard & fast rules.  Sure, there are guidelines and good practices, but what works for one family doesn’t necessarily fit another.

So give yourself the freedom to experiment (and learn) as you build screen time rules and routines together as a family.

This brings us to the final secret to screen time success…

…learning to use setbacks to move forward!

Plan for Success

Kids Love to Test Us

And this is especially true when setting boundaries around screen time.

And because they’ve grown accustomed to screen time, the prospect of losing this freedom naturally puts some kids on the defensive.

But when screen time is positioned properly, kids aren’t really losing out. In fact, they’re set to gain a great deal.

Remember, as mentioned in our Welcome module, don’t buy into the Myth of the Clueless Parent.

Kids definitely need limits for healthy emotional development. Yes, the limits should be reasonable and delivered with empathy… but kids do need appropriate limits.

Parents know their kids will benefit from limiting their screen time. It’s just that kids aren’t mature enough to be guided by adult motivations.

They just don’t see it our way.

So it’s how effectively you respond, re-frame screen time, and fine-tune your routines that can make all the difference.

Don’t Take It Personally

When dealing with the daily roller-coaster of parenting, we all know how tough it can be to manage our own emotions. (especially when we’re tired).

But, above all, we have to avoid taking it personally.

Because, for better or worse, kids will follow your lead. So try to avoid the emotional response at all costs – even when you are about to lose it.

“Stop, Drop (whatever your agenda is at that moment) and Breathe…You can still set limits with your child.

Once you calm down, you’ll be able to connect before you correct, so you can calm the storm instead of making things worse.

(No, you don’t look weak. You look like someone who can manage her anger. You’re the role model, remember?)”

– Dr. Laura Markham, Aha! Parenting

Review Progress

You might be wondering…how do I know if we’re moving forward?

Remember that one goal you agreed with your child early on? This goal is your yardstick to measure forward progress.

Perhaps you wanted your kids to come off devices without nagging. How are they doing now? How often do you have to remind them?

Or maybe you wanted them to do more off-screen activities. Are they?  Maybe even a little?Go on a Bike Ride

And don’t forget to ask your kids what they think.  What’s working for them?  What are they learning from the process?

In fact, your child wants to please you – even if it doesn’t always feel that way.  So they’ll be keen to monitor their own progress – if you treat it as a shared experiment, not a blame and shame game.

So review progress regularly, recognise even the baby steps, and allow time for each habit to stick.

Embracing setbacks

So, what do we do about screen time setbacks?

Sure, there will be stumbling blocks along the way – but that’s OK. You can handle it… if you treat it with a mindset of experimentation and learning.

It’s not about blaming and shaming, it’s about teaching your child a process to deal with bumps in the road. Developing their resilience.  Accepting that we all have room to grow.

And over time, screen time limits will become routine.

But if your kids kick up a fuss, keep your cool and listen. Chances are you can refine your screen time routine to help ease tensions.

And once tempers have cooled, discussing these refinements is an opportunity to teach your child life skills such as compromise, emotional regulation and effective communication.

In this way, you and your child can refine your ‘experiments’ together.

Failing forward

It took your kids time to learn to walk. Ride a bike. Read a book.

You watched them fall, falter, and fail. Then helped them on their feet.

Wash, rinse, repeat.

Take the same approach with screen time. You have a fantastic opportunity to learn with your child and teach them to focus on progress…not perfection.

So maybe 20 minutes of screen time in the morning before school didn’t work. Maybe 10 minutes will? Or how about no screens before school?

Or maybe 20 minutes of screen time to wind down before homework didn’t cut it. Maybe 20 minutes kicking a ball outside or playing cards with you makes more sense for both of you to wind down and reconnect?

Failing is just part of the learning journey. So fail forward by using mistakes as stepping stones to good habits.

Go forth and EXPERIMENT!

Write a Poem Using Your Spelling Words

Remember, there really are no right and wrongs, only step-by-step progress towards achieving your screen time goals together as a family. In other words…

“MOTIVATION is what gets you started. HABIT is what keeps you going.”

– Jim Ryun

Habyts in Action

Review Reports in Habyts.  Then agree changes with your child based on what you learned.
Click here to see how.

Reward Yourself

Give yourself a lazy day – or even just an hour!Go to the beach, to a museum, or another free and entertaining place.

Or write yourself a letter of congratulations for moving forward as far as you have to manage screen time and motivate your kids!

Just be good to yourself!

Was This Helpful?

Top