8 Tips To Lessen The Back-To-School Stress On Your Family
As a family, the kids heading back to school adds additional stress to everyone’s lives from waking up earlier to make sure the kids are situated, to homework help and paperwork, to school functions. It can be emotionally draining from the additional stress and anxiety, which is normal from wanting your child to fit in, succeed and be happy. To lessen the overwhelming feelings, here are some tips to help limit back-to-school stress in your family.
Listen to what your child is saying. Communication is key! It can be easy to hear your child complaining about not wanting to go to school and merely overlook it, but there might be a bigger issue at hand. Talk to your child to see if something is going on at school that makes them not want to attend like a bully or a schedule that doesn’t suit them. These issues are going to significantly impact your child if they continue to go unresolved. Talk to them and see how they’re doing to ease their stress. Never minimize or dismiss the things that seem to be negatively impacting their life.
Help ease your own anxiety. If you are feeling anxious about the summer ending and the new school year starting your child will also feel that. A new school year is exciting and encouraging your child it will be fun will help and benefit everyone. If you’re particularly hard on yourself and critiquing yourself that will impact the child. Trust in yourself you’ve done an excellent job and take a breath. It will help everyone feel calmer.
Plan ahead. Knowing what you have scheduled for the week beforehand can help you move through the week with ease. Do this in a way that makes sense for you. Maybe it’s setting weekly or monthly goals. It could be meal prepping on Sundays for the week or creating a monthly visual color-coded schedule. Figure out what works best for you to maximize your time and productivity to help you feel less stressed in your day-to-day life.
Set aside a designated homework time with your child. When your child knows it’s time to do homework from 6-7 every evening, then they’re not fighting you on it, and it ensures it gets done. You are also not their tutor; you can let them know they can do their homework from a set time then ask you on anything they might need additional help on but they shouldn’t be reliant on your the whole time to do it with them.
Seek out time with your child every day, without technology. It’s easy to get consumed in our lives with technology at the tips of our fingers, but for the parents and child, it’s equally important to spend time together without distractions. This will help your child feel more connected to you and will also be good for you to unplug. Focus on playtime, downtime and family time - you can figure out how that looks to your family but adding this set time together and unplugged is essential to help ease stress.
Create a bedtime for your child and stick to it. Children need more sleep than adults do. Children ages 6 - 13 need between 9 and 11 hours of sleep each night, according to the Sleep Foundation. Establish a bedtime with your child and help eliminate factors that could be keeping them up at night like technology usage. It’s also crucial for parents to get enough sleep and have some alone time to decompress after your child goes to sleep.
Budget plan. Heading back to school can also be stressful on you financially from the additional school expenses, as well as back to school shopping and knowing the holidays are right around the corner. Figure out what works best for your family to make sure that money is as little of a stressor as possible on you.
Trust in your child. It can be easy to feel out of control and uneasy with social media, text messages, fad challenges and so on in today’s world but you have to trust your child and help them realize you are supportive of them and believe in yourself that you’ve done a good job. Make sure they know you love them, even when they hit the point they seem distant. It’s vital for them to know they have you and hear it.