Routines For Back To School

Melanie Green


Any educator or veteran mom can tell you how insanely important and useful routines are. Having a routine does not mean you're a crazy helicopter mom or teacher who is a control freak. It means you like to have expectations and a plan to be successful.

Teaching any curriculum or skill is all about repetition. It's how we learn our alphabet and numbers. It's how we learn we should brush our teeth every morning and night. It's how we learn when we have to use the restroom! At the deepest core of life, there are routines.

I've mentioned before how important goals are over making resolutions. Goals are attainable milestones we can reach by planning out the steps needed to be taken in order to reach said milestones. Think of routines as the steps needed to be successful. Just like there are good and bad habits, there are also good and bad routines. It is up to us to make sure we are doing what is best for ourselves (and sometimes others around us) by sticking with those good routines. "How the heck do I do that?" It's easy, it just takes a little planning, effort, and consistency.

I want you to grab something to write with and follow along.

First, I want you to think of some small goals you want to work on every day. It can be as big as cleaning out your garage or working out. It can be something small; to make sure you drink water throughout the day or take 15-20 minutes of your day to read a book. Whatever it is, write it down.

Next, I want you to think about what you do every morning and every night. Write the steps down in the order you do them and don't cheat! This only works if you are completely honest and open with yourself. No one will see this unless you show it!

Take a look at your lists and evaluate if there are any steps that are unhealthy that you should probably make a point to get rid of. You should also use this as a point to realize if you should be adding any steps to your routine.

Check out this example:

You might be asking "why does she put brush her teeth as part of her routine? You should do that every day anyways!" Well, of course I brush my teeth. The point of putting it in my routine is to have order to my routine. Adding this step helps implement my other steps in my routines. It helps me to focus and have a purpose for every other step. I also think about what makes the most sense from a time management standpoint. (I don't like going back and forth and all over the place. I'm the type of person that will carry as much as I can all at once to avoid multiple trips to the car. )

My routine in the evenings is to help enforce a sense of organization and calmness for the evening and for getting started the next day. I plan and prepare by looking over my calendar to see what I have on my schedule. I prepare anything I can to help the morning run smoothly. Leave my kids signed papers in the basket where all our communication goes, coordinate pickup/drop-off times for the kids with my husband, make sure I have everything I need and am ready to go for tomorrow's dinner, etc.

I used to think meditation was a joke. I'd laugh about it and thought it was a waste of time. However, I find that sitting in my room with dim lighting and my diffuser on without noise really helps. It's a time I use to focus on taking deep breaths, sometimes I stretch. I try to focus only on my breathing and not all the things I need to do or add to my to-do list. It helps to calm myself and really get ready for bed. It honestly makes me a little sleepier!

Use your routines as a way to organize your brain at the starting and ending points of your day. It's almost like making mini goals for yourself to help you plan to be successful. Have you ever heard of going to bed with a clean kitchen will make you feel better the next morning? Have you tried it? If you haven't, I highly suggest it! It's life-changing! It's something so silly but it makes a big impact. A simple act like cleaning your kitchen gets your morning off right because you don't have to clean first and then cook or make lunches. It also weighs heavily on your subconscious when things are disorganized and messy. You might think you're ok with a dirty stove and countertop with dirty dishes piled in the sink, but that's only because you don't know what you don't know.

One more thing I want to point out to you is these routines you are setting for yourself are not concrete. They should never stay the same for a long period of time. Our lives are constantly changing. We should constantly be moving forward, learning, and progressing to be better than we were the year before. Now, I understand the mere thought of writing these routines might cause some of you anxiety, but please don't worry! These routines do not have to be fancy at all.

In fact, I'm going to help you out by providing a free Canva template. You don't have to use my template. If you have already thought about the steps for your routines don't wait! Write them down! It doesn't have to be artistic, you can write them on a post-it note! I would advise you to put your routines somewhere you will see them on a daily basis. You can even write them on a piece of paper and slide them into a page protector. That way you can check them off using a dry-erase marker! It'll totally give you satisfaction to check those suckers off every morning and night!

My ask is that you create these simple routines and try them for one week. Total commitment for one week. After a week is up and you can honestly say this did not help you in any way at all, I want you to email me so I can help you figure out something that will! I promise once you start getting into steady routines it will simplify your life just enough for you to breathe a little easier. My goal is to help in any way I can.

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