Crossing the Finish Line

The finish line to this year’s extraordinary school year is in sight. Some of us may be losing steam and slowing down. Others may be attempting to pick up the pace and feel worried that we’ll never cross that finish line.

Here are three tips to help keep our kids (and us!) focused and on track to successfully complete the school year. That way, whether we’re running, crawling, leaping, or cartwheeling across the finish line, we’ll be doing it together!

MAKE A LIST

On a piece of paper, make a list of all that is between you and the finish line. You might not be a list person but keeping all these “to dos” inside our heads can be stressful. Putting them down on paper provides perspective and reduces anxiety.

Made your list? Now go back through it and cross out all those items that are “wishes,” those things that you’d like to accomplish but aren’t necessary to get you across the finish line. You are now left with a more manageable and probably smaller-than-you-imagined list. By separating out what matters from the minutiae, you may already be feeling better!

BREATHE 

As you start to tackle your list, don’t forget to breathe! Taking a few deep breathes throughout the day will help you relax, stay focused, and build resiliency. While we all know how to breathe, if you want more guidance on how to do more mindful breathing, you can click here and follow along with this audio guide put out by UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center.

SLEEP 

Now work on getting a good night’s sleep. And then another good night’s sleep. And so on.

Sleep-or lack of it—impacts school and work performance. When we are short on sleep, we have to work harder to accomplish tasks and often don’t do as well. So how much sleep is enough? As better sleep has been shown to improve school performance, sleep deserves a whole other blog post devoted to itself. (We’ll start working on that!)

So make that list, breathe, get a good week’s sleep, and come back next week. In the meantime, keep moving toward that finish line.