Most schools are back in session, which for many parents means enforcing the “early to bed, early to rise” rule at home. Summer is a time of less structure and more freedom from a kid’s point of view, but by the time school rolls around again, the parents’ point of view is often, “Thank God! Back to routine!” At least that’s the consensus I am hearing when polling friends and family.
Back to school time often feels like a fresh start. Growing up, I was always excited for the new school year to begin. Clearly, I had graduated from the grade below and I was mature enough to handle bigger and better material! Unchartered territory! New friends! As an adult, it is a chance to celebrate and renew my dedication to my goals for the year. What did I write down that I wanted to accomplish? What wins can I celebrate at this point? How close am I to achieving my other goals? Are they still important to me? What do I need to change so I am moving closer toward fulfilling the commitments I made to myself and others months ago as well as blend in the new challenges and commitments that have worked their way into my life since?
On our team, we run our business in 12 week cycles, based on the book “The 12 Week Year” by Brian Moran and Michael Lennington. What I love most about structuring time this way is we get to reset, refresh and renew our commitments to our personal and professional goals every 12 weeks. Rather than lining the 12 week cycles up with the calendar year, we schedule them to coincide with milestones like the end of summer and going to back to school. These natural transitions often come with schedule changes and new commitments. They cause us to question our old routines and habits and prompt us to make improvements. As my kids get older, there are more and more demands on my schedule with after school activities and I am challenged to find new and improved ways to “get it all done.” I can be stubborn about this and try to cling on to my “old” way of doing things but frustration and failure are the result. It is only when I accept (Dare I say welcome?) change that I create new ways to be more efficient and rise to the new challenges of the season.
Have you examined your schedule and your goals lately? Whether you have kids going back to school or not, this is a perfect time to reflect before charging ahead. Pretend for a moment you are starting from scratch. How would you build your schedule? Whether major changes have come your way recently requiring a major overhaul to your schedule or things have been cruising along for you, taking the time to ensure your top priorities are front and center may make the difference between celebrating life’s wins or feeling the sting of it’s losses. I’d love to hear about changes you are making or ones you’ve made and found to be impactful. Reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Wishing you all the best!