School is back in session, and life is going back to some semblance of normalcy for many of us. Summer vacation has ended, and kids are back in school, but it can take a little bit of time and effort to get back into your routine. This time of year is stressful for many families as everyone learns to adjust to real life, and no one feels that stress more than parents.
On the one hand, stress is a natural part of parenting that you can’t avoid. However, there are things that you can do to reduce your stress and feel saner this school year. Like it or not, the way we feel has an impact on our children. When we are short-tempered, overtired, and spread too thin, the whole family feels the impact. So today, we’re going to talk about some parenting tips to help you be the kind of person and parent you want to do. Parenting is hard, and you’re doing a great job, but we could all use a little help from time to time.
1. Maintain A Schedule
There is nothing better than throwing away the schedule at the end of the school year! Less fighting about bedtime and kids sleeping in after eight in the morning so you can have your coffee in peace. For a couple of months, you only have to worry about summer camp and your vacation plans. But since August rolled around, your laid-back scheduling approach may have become more of a hindrance than a cause for celebration. As your family returns to normal life, it’s time to reestablish your routine. When your kids know what you expect from them, you’re much less likely to have constant conflict. A good schedule is one of our best parenting tips for keeping you all happy and sane.
2. Don’t Overcommit
As you’re creating a schedule to take you through the rest of the school year, make sure to have boundaries around how much you’re willing to do in a day, week, or month. It sounds good to allow your kids to try out all of their interests, but maybe not all at once. It sounds fun to attend a handful of holiday parties, but not over the course of a week. Setting boundaries around how you are willing to spend your time and energy is essential to maintain your parental sanity. As this fall starts to gear up and life gets hectic again, think hard about which activities are worth your energy and which you can pass on. The choices you make for yourself and your well-being are great models to the children who are watching.
3. Set Aside Personal Time
Our children are some of the most beautiful parts of our lives, but sometimes we need a little space. If you’ve ever heard the saying, you can’t pour from an empty cup; we suggest that was all about parenting. As much as we love our families, becoming a parent doesn’t make you any less human. You still have dreams, ambitions, and personal interests of your own. Before you get to the point of feeling overwhelmed, schedule some time for you to serve yourself. Whether that means a weekly exercise class, time with your friends, or a hot bath at the end of a long day, doing something good for yourself puts you in the position to take great care of the people you love.
4. Take Care Of Yourself
You can’t pour from an empty cup, and you also cant pour from a sick and tired cup. Parents lets let this be the year that we all learn to take care of ourselves. We all want to give our best to our families, and sometimes that means stepping back so that you can be the healthy, happy, and stable parent that you want to be. All of the items above come back to this point. When you overcommit and under-schedule your life, it can quickly become very overwhelming. Take the time this school year to put your physical, mental, and emotional well-being higher up on the list where you put the rest of your family’s. When you take care of yourself, you’re setting an example for your children that they’ll hopefully take with them into adulthood. If you implement any of our parenting tips we hope it’s this one.
We are so excited to have all the members of our St. Barnabas School community back on campus. Everyone is happy, well-rested, and ready for a great year. The energy at the beginning of the school year is infectious. You, parents, are doing a great job! This year as you lay out your plans for the school year, we hope you’ll take care to do so in a way that creates a healthy and well-balanced environment for your whole family. If you’re not yet a member of the St. Barnabas community, we’d love to have you! Contact our office to learn more.