It's back to school! Time to get back to routine for the whole family. While some of us may experience this with concern, there is no doubt that we will all do better if we see it for the opportunity it can be – building a back-to-school routine that is not just for the children, but also works for the kids Alos will help you with your weight loss.
Routines are much more than just getting everyone out the door in the morning.
Establishing routines helps us achieve important personal goals and provides important life skills for adults and children.
Take a look at all the benefits of going back to school to cheer you up for the new school years:
- Optimized Decisions: Every time you have a good routine, you'll know how not to have to make lots of small decisions that waste precious brain space (and energy) you'd rather use on something else. You can now activate the autopilot to achieve your goals with little effort. Also, make sure your kids know what to expect of them each morning to avoid nagging, scolding, or begging! In this way, paradoxically, a good routine can be free for all involved.
- Better Self-Care: September is a good time to get back into a routine that will give your life meaning and purpose. For example, many people meditate, exercise or pray as a daily ritual to remind them to be present, to be grateful or to simply recharge and rejuvenate after a stressful day. This has become increasingly important in our information-packed environments. Routines allow you to take the time to pursue a hobby, passion, or exercise each day. Once it's a routine there's no fidgeting because you've already committed!
- Impulse Override: If you've already planned what to have for lunch and prepared it the night before, it is more difficult to be misled with an impulse decision. If you have a training session planned in your diary, it can be done almost automatically. If you've told your kids that there are no cell phones during the week (or limited to 20 minutes, for example), there are fewer arguments and better control. Discipline pays off. This is the real magic behind routines.
- Stress Relief: Modern life, increasingly defined by unpredictability, can inspire anxiety, and routines provide the anchor of predictability that so many of us (especially children) crave. Routines help us accomplish things that need to be done so we can cross them off our list, which will make us feel less stressed out. In short, predictable routines help us feel more secure and resilient to face life's challenges.
- Improved Sleep: Even though you (and the kids, too) have to wake up earlier now, research shows that a more rigorous routine definitely benefits your sleep schedule. This is crucial because we know that adults need around seven to eight hours of deep sleep to optimize weight loss. If you prepare bags and lunches the night before, lay out breakfast, and tidy the kitchen, you can sleep better knowing you are ready for the next day. Sleep experts also recommend opening the curtains first thing in the morning and bringing some light into the house, as this stimulates melatonin, the hormone that stimulates our natural sleep-wake cycle.
Developing a Healthier Back to School
Sit down with a pad of paper and write down everything you need (and want) to do each day for a week. See what you can cut or flatten. Then see what you can set as "normal routine".
Look for time slots to incorporate some movement into and time slots for food preparation. Will you prepare the night before or will you get up a little earlier to do it? This is critical in keeping you on track when you have a busy schedule (and it saves you money, too!).
Remember to be patient with yourself. Bad habits didn't develop overnight. So take the time to adjust them (usually this should take two to three weeks). Identify a habit or two that you want to work on and do so consistently for two to three weeks. Then add a more or two and keep building until you have a new, healthier routine.
Soon it will feel like second nature. And if you find something isn't working, don't be afraid to change it.
Great back to school routine and recipe options
- Try starting the year with some healthy lunch options for you and your child – check out our blog about it.
- Check out our healthy back-to-school podcast.
- Download a copy of our Pillar Assist "Back To School Receipes".
Happy people building routine!