How to Handle the New Summer Routine

As a kid I always knew summer was right around the corner when these 2 songs began to play on the radio (take a listen to get into the summer mood):

School’s Out – by local AZ resident Alice Cooper

Summertime – DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince

Typically, the end of the school year is regarded as a time to celebrate – parents and children made it through another year of homework – YIPEE! 

And the summer is often advertised as loads of sun, fun, vacations, and freedom! But it also means for many families a significant change in routine and increased stress.  Some children (like me when I was a kid) are thrilled to be out of school and can’t wait to lounge by the pool all day long.  Others have more mixed emotions – they find comfort in the routine and structure of school, and have to wait until August for that sense of relief to occur.

So how does one prepare for this transition?

Over the years I’ve learned that I enjoy my life so much more when I have established routine and order in my daily schedule.  And lots of kids do too…they just don’t know it yet!  Summer can be a very important season for establishing routine, and below are some tips on how to create one:

1).  Use a daily planner instead of to-do lists, helping to motivate you to accomplish a task instead of moving it to the next day.
2).  Establish a morning routine, like walking the dog, making your bed, getting ready for the day or doing a load of laundry.
3).  Sit down with your family and create a summer bucket list.  Include fun activities and locations, like the following:

Planning out your summer really not your thing (or just don’t have the time)?  Don’t worry, it’s OK to be spontaneous!  We’ve got a few other tips that you can use to help your entire family transition from school to summer:

1).  Get back to basics, like balanced nutrition, plenty of water and exercise, and regular periods of downtime and unstructured activities
2).  Take a Staycation.  Trip Advisor recommends the following family-friendly locations

4).  Make sleep a priority.  Experts recommend that school-aged children get 9-11 hours of sleep per night.
5).  Power down devices, especially before bed, and remove them from the bedroom.  The blue light emitted can keep kids awake.
6).  Lastly, make sure you are taking good care of yourself!  Build in self-care time outside of family obligations. Parents can be even more stressed than their kids over the summer. Remember…kids are always watching and learning from you, so the more you can stay regulated in the midst of a very chaotic summer, the more likely they are to follow suit!

We’d love to hear from you…how does YOUR family plan to enjoy the summer this year?!

These videos and any content included are meant to be educational and instructional. They are not able to diagnose or treat a specific issue and are definitely not a substitute for a professional evaluation.

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