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With kids at school, take time for you

By Rosie Molinary
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Rosie Molinary

The clothes are purchased. The backpack is filled. The car pool schedule has been mapped out on color-coded Excel spreadsheets shared on Google Docs. You’ve put an elaborate family calendar on the wall to make sure everyone knows where he needs to be, and you are furiously pinning nutritious bagged lunches on Pinterest.

It seems your kids are more than ready for school, but chances are you haven’t spent time thinking about what this fall means for you. Want to avoid looking up in three months and thinking, “What just happened?” Try these tips to bring the back-to-school spirit to your life, too.

Get yourself organized. Once you have organized everything from calendars to wardrobes to help school mornings go smoother, do the same for yourself.

What will help you make the most of the time you have now that schedules are tighter? Do you need a new way to track your own calendar or a more developed to-do list system? Could a streamlined closet help you get ready faster so you have more time to supervise the morning proceedings? Do you need a weekly menu plan so healthier meals get to the table faster? Does your family need a landing pad when they walk in the door so stuff has a home and you don’t lose time looking for a missing shoe? Put in the time now to get yourself organized so you don’t lose even more time later.

Set your own goals. Chances are you have talked to your kids about what their goals are. Now it is your turn.

Whether you think about it while you are out for a run, while you commute to work, or in a journal, set some goals for yourself that are about your own personal growth and then get started. Bonus? You model to your kids that we are always growing and learning, no matter our age.

Employ the magic hour. Finding a little daily time for yourself can be hard when the school year starts, and yet it is essential for your sense of total well-being. If you find yourself craving that time, make it happen by designating an hour for yourself.

Maybe you wake up an hour earlier so you get time to yourself to read, write, meditate, do some yoga, work out, drink your coffee in silence and otherwise acclimate to the day before the morning rush gets started. You could also try the same approach in the evening, before bed. Giving yourself some quiet to tune in with yourself regularly can have a significant impact on your sense of well-being.

Work in your own care. Your kid coughs twice and you waste no time calling the pediatrician. Your husband complains of back pain and you book him a massage appointment. We are notoriously good at caring for other people.

Make sure there is no disparity with the care you offer others and the care you offer yourself. Write a list of what you need for your total wellness this fall, make the necessary appointments and follow up with the commitment to yourself.

Rosie Molinary is author of “Beautiful You: A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance.”
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The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.

Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email local@charlotteobserver.com to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.

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