For parents and kids alike, the back to school transition can create feelings of excitement and anticipation, but it can also bring its fair share of stress and anxiety. For kids, the return to school can be a difficult adjustment after a long summer break of freedom and relaxation. However, the structure and routine that come with the school year can also be a welcome change, providing a sense of comfort and stability to their day-to-day lives.
As parents and carers, the start of the school year can bring a new level of busyness and pressure with its added schedule of extra-curricular activities and homework. It can be really tough to balance the demands of work, home, and the needs of your children, and it can be far too easy to neglect your own wellbeing in the process. Nevertheless, it is crucial to remember that taking care of yourself is just as important as taking care of your children.This includes making time to prioritise self care and finding ways to manage stress in a healthy way. Whether that’s through exercise, meditation or simply taking a few moments to breathe.
One solution to help manage the stress of the back-to-school season is to establish a routine. Having a set schedule for work, family time, and personal time can help bring a sense of control and organisation to the busyness of daily life. Routine setting can also be helpful for children, creating space for things like homework, extracurricular activities, and free time.
Sometimes seeing your kids struggling with the adjustment can be the hardest part. To help ease this period for them, try to have open and honest conversations with your children about their feelings and concerns as they transition back to school. Encourage them to share their excitement and any worries they may have, and as parents and carers, really pay attention to what they are saying. We may think it’s best to jump in and give solutions, however often what children are needing is for you to listen, and listen with empathy. If they’re up for it, try working together to find solutions to any challenges they may face. This can help build their resilience and foster positive communication between you. Hopefully this communication channel can ease your own worries about how your child is going.
It’s also important to remember that self care doesn’t have to be complicated or time consuming. Simple activities such as reading a book, going for a walk, or practising mindfulness can help you recharge and manage stress. And, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t be afraid to reach out for support from family and friends, or professional help.
While the start of a new school year can bring a mix of excitement and stress for parents and kids, by establishing routines, having open and honest conversations, and prioritising self care, you can help make the transition smoother for everyone. And don’t forget to enjoy the excitement of a new school year and all the possibilities it brings!