Are you getting ready?
Or are you hitting the snooze button on this back to school malarky?
I know it’s tempting. I know you want to bask in the magic of the school holidays for just a little longer. I do too, but I know that if I keep hitting snooze, I am just putting off the inevitable and what follows will just be an almighty sh1t storm of grumpiness, to do lists and stress.
I’m a huge fan of preventative maintenance and not leaving it and waiting til things get really bad. What about you?
The reason for that is because I need time to make changes.
I need time to transition from one thing to another. The adjustment doesn’t come naturally for me. It feels uncomfortable and awkward. Unfamiliar and unknown. I feel that being prepared helps me feel more sorted. So, for those of us who find transitions hard (and I know lots of my younger clients do), here are a few things on Smiley’s Back to School Checklist which I think will help you.
1. Accept that CHANGE is coming and allow it to happen – with that can come a whole load of big emotions which can feel like swimming in treacle but the more you allow and accept them, the quicker they dissolve. If you shut down or try to ‘manage’ them on behalf of your child, they will come out side-ways. Discover here how the Energy Podders are learning the importance of being connected to your feelings. You don’t want your child growing up not knowing how to tune into themselves. They will be forever looking to you (or somebody else to save them).
2. Say GOODBYE to the holidays – some of us find goodbyes hard and you can read more about what helps with that here. I know a family who are putting together a scrap book of their holiday snaps as a way to close that chapter and get ready to move onto the next one.
3. Prepare EARLY and allow yourselves TIME – read opening paragraph again. Think snoozing on your alarm clock when you have an appointment. 5 minutes of sleep for a day of playing catch up.
4. Establish ROUTINES in advance. Your routines will have slipped over the holidays. Maybe boundaries have slipped too? Screens, sugar. It’s all going to be a bit of a shock to the system so gradually allow yourself time to ease back in. Here are 10 ideas to shake up your morning routine. You can do it differently this time.
5. Up your CONNECTION – this is for kids who find it hard to be away from you or home or just find a change in routine quite overwhelming. They need to feel safe and secure. I have a quick and easy way for you to up the connection in the run up to school.
6. Can you dig deep and have EMPATHY for your child? This is the most powerful and transformational part of your parenting toolkit. It enables you to meet your child in the place where they are and parking your stuff.
7. Dust off those Smiley Thought Cards and start using them again. I’ve written a great blog post to show you all the ways you can bring those magical cards into your new school routine and really start work on that growth mindset. If you don’t have a box, you can pick them up here.
8. Develop a GROWTH MINDSET – this is what helps your child to bounce back from disappointment and life’s little hiccups. Going Back to School requires us to enter the unknown and power up our confidence to have a go and trust ourselves to handle it. If you need a hand with that I have a fab freebie to help you.
9. Focus on the FUN stuff – not all of school life is boring or tricky but if your child has negative associations with school or has had a tough time of it at school, finding the ‘Oooh in the Poo’ is a little bit harder. See my point above on growth mindset. Things I loved about returning to school were shoe shopping (naturally!), stationery (have you checked out The Works and Kiki K for some quirky bargains).
10. Learn to CHILLAX – listen to my Smiley’s Sweet Dreams Bedtime Pack every night for a week before school whilst bringing bedtime forward by 10 minutes each night. A relaxed brain that is worry free will find it easier to learn.