Life gives us so many ups and downs, emotionally and physically. And within each season of life, there are various transitions that feel harder than others. The start of a new school year is often one of them. Even though we, as parents, haven’t changed our jobs, it feels like a major upheaval in family life.
So how do we navigate this transition? By simplifying and focusing on what I like to refer to in my coaching practice as your Foundation of Living. Think of your foundation as the basic necessities that you need to live; water, food, clothing, and shelter. And then ask yourself these questions:
Am I drinking enough water every day? Or am I oversaturating my body with caffeine to survive the emotions I am feeling? Grab one of the many water bottles that you have in your cabinet and consistently use it for drinking water throughout your day. Try to consume at least 80 ounces of water a day. (This is a baseline number, if you are working out extremely hard, you need to consume more.)
Where are the shortcuts I can take to feed my family healthy meals? Now may be a good time to purchase frozen pre-cut vegetables rather than fresh ones. Picking up a rotisserie chicken and using that in your recipe rather than raw meat that needs to be cut and cooked or relying on slow cooker recipes that do the work for you so that you can focus on other things. Make a list of easy recipes that you know your family will like and stick with them for a bit rather than trying a new recipe or getting creative. Let’s avoid dinner time meltdowns and focus on letting that time be a moment of connection rather than arguments over eating something new.
Is our house functioning in a way that alleviates arguments in the morning about getting out of the door in time? Maybe this means reevaluating where backpacks and shoes are stored. One of my clients put a small 4-drawer dresser in her foyer. Her daughter’s backpack lives on top of it, and the drawers are filled with all the last-minute things that ended up causing a breakdown in their morning; socks, hair ties, an extra uniform sweater in case she gets cold in her classes, etc. Or maybe it means allocating money in the budget to hire a cleaning company for the first few months of the school year so that an item can be taken off your to-do list.
Is the clothing that is in the closets and dressers performing well for this season? It’s a perfect time to go through socks and underwear and dispose of anything holey, or that has stretched-out elastic. Move “play clothes” or weekend clothing to a separate bin or drawer so that getting dressed is easier to manage. Eliminate the second trip your child has to take to their room to change into something more appropriate or less grubby/stained looking for their school day. Many people find great success in their weekday morning routines by spending thirty minutes Sunday evening with their child, picking out the clothing they will wear that week, and having it set out on top of the dresser or in a particular drawer.
Your Foundation of Living is unique to you, and not all of these ideas or suggestions will apply to you. That’s okay! It’s important, though, to go through the basic necessities you need to live; water, food, clothing, and shelter, and question whether they need to be changed or adjusted to navigate this new school year with better success. I am happy to help you create a personalized plan in one coaching session; reserve your spot by clicking this link and choosing a date and time that works for your schedule.