Back to school signals the informal beginning of Fall. Fall is full of homework, holidays, school festivals, and increased stress which also translates to less money! It's not just a big transition for kids, but for moms, too. Women continue to manage the biggest share of responsibility when it comes to household management. This is called "emotional labor" or "mental load". So much of the work that I do is helping women manage the mental load and develop a better sense of self. Setting expectations and shifting your focus are the key to a smooth transition and a reduction in stress.
The internet is flowing around with printables of cute lunch notes and tips for arranging your child's lunch to look like a work of art. This just adds pressure to today's parents to make every moment in their child's life magical. This pressure is not only unrealistic; it's unnecessary. If you do not want to utilize the school lunch provided by your children's school on a daily basis; maybe just one or two days a week or when you have a busy week. If you are sending lunch everyday, your child will be fine if he or she does not have a professional looking bento box for lunch. Better yet, encourage your child to make his or her own lunch. Kids as young as 6 can make their own lunch.
Another item to take off your plate is organization. Encourage your children to unpack their backpacks each day, which includes cleaning our their lunch box. Not only does this help you, it supports an independent child. Children develop pride from accomplishing tasks. You are helping your child gain independent living skills and building self-esteem.
In my child's school district, the school provide everything a child needs in the classroom and school supplies are just suggestions. I'm not saying that you shouldn't go back to school shopping. I just saying that there is no need to search the internet for an orange plastic folder or run to 6 stores looking for 24 sharpened Ticonderoga #2 pencils.
The most practical advice I can give for preparing your household for school is to get everyone's bedtime routine consistent before school. Getting to bed the same time everyday and waking up the same time everyday is the best preparation your child can have for a great start at school.
I am a mental health therapist practicing in Henderson, NV. I have found that most of the people that I work with have lost themselves on the road to success. A key component of my treatment approach is assisting people in rediscovering their passions and restoring balance to their lives. This blog contains slivers of wisdom that I continue to discover while assisting people become mentally fit.