5 Ways to Cut Back on Family Chaos

Chaos seems to be accepted as the norm for busy families, but it doesn't have to be. With Mighty Mommy’s tips you can take your family from chaos and confusion to a more serene and orderly way of life.

Cheryl Butler
4-minute read
Episode #352

how to decrease family chaosWhether you have one kid or eight like I do, every family seems to have their moments of chaos. One of my best friends is a proud stay-at-home dad of two young boys and, although he likes to tease us that he bakes the meanest double-chocolate chip cookies in the neighborhood, he also admits that he frequently loses his patience and sanity because his family never sits still long enough to stop and smell the roses. And then there are my working mom BFFs who thrive in the office yet when the weekend hits, their family lives are often hanging by a thread because they are always running frantically in too many directions.

If your family is in a similar boat, don’t worry. With Mighty Mommy’s tips you can take your family from chaos and confusion to a more serene and orderly way of life.

Tip #1: Create Family Rituals

One of my fondest memories growing up as the oldest of five siblings were our family rituals. No matter how busy we were or regardless of whether things were peaceful or we were riding the storm of a crazy period, we had certain rituals we could always count on to help us connect and stay united as a family.  One of those rituals was our bedtime stories. Every night before we went to bed, one of my parents either read to us or told us a story that they would make up—no matter what. This story ritual not only gave us something to look forward to each night, my mother admits now—all these years later—that it always helped her regain her composure after a hectic day too. Recent studies have shown that having rituals whether it be our morning routine of having a cup of coffee after we feed the dog or having our child set the table for dinner each night actually make us happier. Rituals can help us savor the present without us even realizing it, which can in turn make us appreciate the simple moments in our day-to-day lives.

Don’t be discouraged, however, if you don’t have many traditions in place just yet. The beauty is that you can start them any time, any place, and your newfound traditions will still have a positive impact on your entire family regardless of how old they are. For more ideas see 6 Ways to Create Family Traditions.

Tip #2: Declutter

Take a look around your living space right now.  What do you see? Is your home orderly, offering up a spacious feel where you can sit, relax and enjoy your own thoughts or chill out peacefully with your family? If so—that’s great! Or do you see toys strewn about in nearly every room, piles of magazines, unfiled paperwork, old newspapers, recyclables, etc., stacked on almost every empty surface and counter in your home? (Never mind what’s going on in the corners of your bedroom, under your bed or in your garage or attic) If it’s the latter, no wonder your household is in a constant source of chaos—I know, because my family was there as well. 

If you want to tone down your family’s chaos level, decluttering and getting organized is a great place to start.  Check out Get it Done Guy and Domestic CEO's conversation for some simple and strategic ways to get your clutter under control.  See Also:  Clean, Organize, and Declutter with Marie Kondo's Magic: Part 1 and Part 2.


All content here is for informational purposes only. This content does not replace the professional judgment of your own mental health provider. Please consult a licensed mental health professional for all individual questions and issues.

About the Author

Cheryl Butler Project Parenthood

Cheryl L. Butler was the host of the Mighty Mommy podcast for nine years from 2012 to 2021. She is the mother of eight children. Her experiences with infertility, adoption, seven pregnancies, and raising children with developmental delays have helped her become a resource on the joys and challenges of parenting. You can reach her by email.