Easy Does It.
If the end of summer is catching you by surprise, it probably means you’ve been enjoying the days of summer vacation, sunshine, a revolving door of guests and embraced the bliss of ignoring what day of the week it is. But as the days grow shorter and the school bell calls, it's time to gently nudge ourselves back into the rhythm of everyday life.
Easing back into routines doesn't mean abandoning the joy and spontaneity of summer entirely. You can blend the best of both worlds – the structure of routines with the freedom to savor the present moment. So, take it easy, take what resonates from the tips below and remember, you've got this!
After a laid-back summer, it's normal to feel a bit rusty when it comes to self-discipline. But remember, be kind to yourself during this transition. Start by setting small, achievable goals for yourself and your family. Celebrate even the tiniest wins along the way. Little by little, you'll find your groove again.
Pre Routine Prep. Sometimes just a little communication goes a long way when easing everyone into a new situation. Call a family meeting a couple weeks before school, reflect on your greatest summer memories and discuss the changes that need to be made for school days ahead. Decide on wake up times, shower times, meal times, homework routines and ask everyone for ideas on lunches, rules and how to make it the best year ahead. If you want something to refer back to, you can even write it up as a fun family agreement and have everyone sign it. Kids love giving input and knowing what to expect. They may even surprise you on how this helps direct their focus on getting prepared and sticking to the plan.
If you're a college student going back to school, set a schedule for yourself so you can prep your lunches, have ample time to get ready in the mornings, and set times for studying. Keeping yourself on a schedule will help you throughout the year!
Rise and Shine: Waking up early for school can be a shock to the system after a carefree summer. To make the transition smoother, try setting the alarm clock for school time at least two weeks before the first day back. Whether you're the student or have students in your home, everyone will feel ready and confident and you’ll avoid last minute fire drills.
Breakfast Bonding + Dinner Dates
: Eating together is one of the best ways for families to stay connected
and in tune with each other. It may not be possible every day or night, but having a pre-determined breakfast and dinner routine will help give your kids a sense of belonging. If you're dorming away from home, maybe set some friend dates and inviting friends over for dinner to decompress after a long day of class.
Pro tip: Food prep on weekends together and make healthy one-dish wonders you can simply heat up so one person isn't doing all the work.
Add Me-Time For Them + Mindfulness For You.
Kids and adults alike need to decompress so make sure you schedule in a little me-time for them when they get home from school and sports. Give them a little space to wash up, regroup, reflect on their day and have a snack before you start the homework push. Set a timer if you have to — clear boundaries will help them thrive and the quiet time will help them get grounded. Just make sure this is an agreed upon no-phone time. Take that time for yourself to breathe deep, practice mindful gratitude and reground yourself to reduce feeling of “busyness”. It will help everyone stay more present and peaceful.
Self-Care Superstars: Kids can benefit from nourishing clean routines too!
Encourage your children to practice self-care daily. Feel them out for when their best shower or bath time is, taking into account sports schedules and extracurriculars and write up a schedule. Stock the shower or bath with fun, new products
to give then something to look forward to. Create simple germ fighting practices like washing their face and hands
before they leave and right when they come home. These little moments can help your kids feel empowered and confident. The clean habits you create for them now will last a life time.
Clean Up, Stock Up and Designate Space for Homework
: A chaotic space can hinder you or your kids’ ability to organize themselves, so start the year with a clean slate. If you can provide any clean and uncluttered space just for them or yourself along with all the tools needed, you’ll be giving them or yourself a great head start
. (Plus, for kids, you'll be giving them the responsibility to keep their space tidy and organized.)
Don’t Forget The Fun. You don’t want the transition to school days to be so serious that your kids think it’s the end of all fun forever! For the first few weekends plan some additional lighthearted play while everyone transitions into the new schedules and social life of school days. If you're a student, go enjoy some of your favorite places like the park, beach, or cafes. Enjoy yourself a little before buckling down in your studies!