Life moves so fast. Sometimes I feel like I’m in one of those glass-bottom boats, watching moments slip by like fish under the glass. Each new year makes me feel a little older, and a little more aware of just how precious life is. While I can’t make time stall, or capture the fleeting moments, I can work towards living more fully and being more present, which is a great goal for 2019. And so can you! The New Year provides the perfect time to consider how we can make the most of the moments we have with our kids and grow in ways that help us become the parents, teachers, and learners we want to be. With that in mind, here are 7 New Year’s resolutions for homeschoolers that will help you increase your joy and live more fully each day, no matter what may come! (And, you may even find yourself more productive, too!)
7 New Year’s resolutions for homeschoolers
- Face your fears and don’t back down. Change can be scary, especially when it affects your family. We usually fear the unknown, but if we believe we can turn the unknown into a known, we can conquer our fears. As Vincent Van Gogh said, “If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.”
- Tackle the hard stuff first. Our tendency is to piddle around with the small tasks while we work up enough courage to wrestle the big ones. Stop that! Studies have proved it’s better to deal with the bigger tasks when you are fresh and have the energy to expend. Don’t sweat the small stuff until you’ve tackled the big fish!
- Don’t try to be Supermom (or dad). If you don’t listen to any other of these New Year’s resolutions, listen to this one! You wear many hats, and none of them make you faster than a speeding bullet or able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. Take time to be the wife, sister, friend, neighbor, aunt, and whomever else you are. Do something fun and challenging. Take more breaks and breathe. Your health is valuable and you matter most to the people around you. Take time for yourself each day. It’s not selfish — it’s soul-feeding!
- Learn to say “Yes” and “No.” Learning to say “No” — without guilt — to things you really cannot do for whatever reason can help bring peace to you and your household. Reserve those “Yeses” — with enthusiasm — for the times your kids really want to do something with you or for you (or want to learn something different!). You can’t be everything to everyone, so stop trying!
- Make homeschooling more fun. Homeschool doesn’t mean staying home all the time. Resolve to go out more often — sometimes to learn, sometimes to just let loose! Plan some field trips to the points of attraction in your area. Or just go to the park and kick a ball around until you fall down exhausted and laughing!
- Strive for peace in the family. Many homeschoolers believe their choice will save them from the stresses found in traditional schools. But homeschooling can foster different stresses for different reasons. Trying to do too much, perfectionism, pushing too hard, etc., can turn our homeschool rooms into a war zone. If you sense that negative feelings are building, resolve to honestly confront them with your family and resolve them together. Practice mindfulness and pursue peaceful moments each day. This may look like reading time on the couch, family yoga, or simply napping!
- Embrace change. I know that sounds like a worn out cliché, but that’s because it works! Change will happen, and you will have to adapt to it. One way to be prepared is to join a local or online homeschool group so you can lean on the wisdom of people who have been through it all. There is strength in numbers, and you can help and support each other — there is no shame in asking for help.
Too overwhelmed with 7 resolutions? Don’t tackle the entire elephant at once! Choose one and work towards change in that area. As you see the fruits of your labors, you can begin working on another. With a little patience, New Year’s resolutions can bring a new year of homeschool success and personal growth — and you just may enjoy life more.
This year, resolve to keep your resolutions by making them about what matters most: your family and health! What are your New Year’s resolutions? Share them with us in a comment below!