Where did the summer go so fast? A new school year starts on Monday. Are you ready?
Here are my ideas to make the transition from summer vacation to a new academic year more fluid and more connecting:
1. Expect and accept frequent dis-regulated behaviors: meltdowns, tantrums, raging episodes, fearful episodes, refusal to go to school, separation anxiety. This is a normal (to-be-expected! ) acting-out of FEAR in the nervous system of your child, especially in very young children. This anxiety of returning to school will overwhelm your child’s thinking. It is not their fault! They are not doing it intentionally or to upset you. Listen to them while they cry, or rage, and be that safe container that they need so dearly in the weeks to come.
2. Play more, at least for a few weeks. Set aside more time than usual to play with your child – *read my article Play to Connect*. We know from science that free play, laughter and child-led play release “feel-good” hormones like dopamine and serotonin- which have the power to heal fears and trauma. Furthermore, you are building trust, connection and light-heartedness. Right now, your child doesn’t need lectures and information: they need to release the tension in their body through laughter, feeling in control ( that’s why it’s child-led!), and feeling connected to you. Your warm presence is key right now.
3. Set limits with firmness AND kindness at the same time. Most parents have a hard time setting limits properly because they equalize limits with emotional obedience. A child will naturally get upset when a limit is set – and that’s OK. We hold the limit AND listen to their emotions about the limit at the same time. I know it’s hard but it’s possible. If you are a parent who struggles with limits, I recommend that you do one or more of the following:
- read my full article, Why Limits Are Hard: Best Solutions for Today (click here)
- read my book (available on amazon);
- enrol in an Online Starter Class from Hand in Hand Parenting – it will change your parenting life;
- enrol in my Conscious Parent Accelerator Program.
4. Prioritize 1:1 time with each child, one child at the time. Do whatever your child wants at least 10 minutes a day totally uninterrupted and undistracted. Promise not to check your phone, not to worry about cooking, cleaning or work. Give this time a name, such as Special Time, Mommy or Daddy and Me Time, etc. Follow your child’s lead in whatever activity they choose. Do not overtake the activity; do not overpower your child.
5. Have a good self-care daily routine, to keep a “cool head” on your shoulders. Some helpful practices are:
- breathing exercises right when you wake up
- writing daily gratitude
- venting to another adult
- sleeping 8 hours/ night
- less coffee, more water
- eating whole foods, unprocessed
- working on your triggers consciously
When you join my Conscious Parent Accelerator Program, You get:
- 2 live coaching calls with me every week- worth more than 10,000$/ year – with no expiration date
- 8 modules of trauma- informed educational material – lifetime access
- a community of like-minded parents to support you
- my personal support in your parenting journey and personal growth.
What moms in my program say:
“I highly recommend Mihaela and her conscious parenting program. Thank you, Mihaela for your continued support and guidance! Words cannot express enough the value you have provided to me and my daughter!” ( J.)
“Hi Mihaela! I just wanted to say how grateful I am for the listening time you offered a couple of weeks ago. I was in a very difficult position having to handle a super difficult situation and my therapist was away on holiday. I found a lot of comfort in what you said to me, and it made a huge difference because I couldn’t handle it on my own and I had to be at my best for the next couple of weeks. Please don’t tell my therapist I cheated on him; I want to tell him myself 😉” (G.)