Does back-to-school leave you feeling extra stressed and overwhelmed?

But it’s all about the kids. They need lunches packed, supplies bought, new school clothes, back on the bedtime routine, less screentime. But on top of that, they also need stable and unwavering emotional support.

You have to ensure they seamlessly get back into the school time flow… And that means you have to be as well.

All of that can add up and make you feel like there just isn’t any time for you to take care of yourself. How can there only be 24 hours in a day?! Wouldn’t just a couple more be so nice?

When you lower your stress you actually end up working more effectively. If you have even 5 minutes to spare (even if you buddy it up with something like going to the bathroom, showering or making lunches) then get it in!

Stressed woman with book over her face

!Here are 5 quick and easy ways to tackle this back-to-school season stress-free!


1.Plan ahead

Seriously, the best tip ever! This can eliminate so much stress. It’s also a great preventative technique that will make your daily routine flow unconsciously.

Over the weekend when you have time here and there, write out your and your kids’ meals (if that’s a lot even just writing out dinners is great! Then you can work up to all the meals). That way you can shop once a week at the start of the week.

Also, create a plan to prepping kids lunches. Plan ahead for a few at a time or even for the week. Separate, chop and prep the snacky food so when you start to assemble each night it’s as easy as moving it into their lunch box.

You can get everything ready they need (and you need) the night before. For example, have them help select their clothes for the next day and lay them out (and eventually they’ll do it on their own) and demonstrate by also doing yours. Have them pack their backpacks the night before and prepare anything else they’ll need for the next day. Build this into the nightly routine and eventually it will become second nature.

Plan and prepare ahead. It will be a lifesaver.

2. Have family quiet, prayer or meditation time

Don’t have time to sit down and get a meditation done with kids running around and needing you… constantly? Start working in family quiet time, prayer time or meditation time, whatever you prefer.

It may not work right away but eventually, it will be one of the best things you implement in your home. It also builds an incredible practice for your kids. They can develop the best coping mechanisms so they can handle the pressures and emotions while they’re at school and over time it can actually naturally regulate their nervous system so they’re left calmer, less stressed and less anxious.

But the trick with this is, don’t just try it when they’re upset. That’s the biggest mistake I see people make. When you prompt them to breath deep or meditate when they’re upset they will associate deep breathing and meditation with the heightened emotional state they’re in. Instead, have it be a daily practice that is at any point during the day (you can even mix up the time of day to ensure the skill is generalized).

Get them to meditate when they’re already calm. That way they’ll start to associate meditation, prayer or deep breathing with being calm and once it’s imprinted in their brain they’ll turn to it when they need it.

3. Dive into dealing with your own root causes that trigger you towards stress

The best thing you can do for yourself and your child is to work through your own triggers and traumas. This is an ongoing thing but there is no time like the present to get started. 

I recommend finding a program that offers a variety of techniques to help you dive into the root causes of some of your common negative emotions, triggers and traumas. Using hypnosis, NEE or other techniques you can receive both immediate and long-term benefits.

Dealing with your triggers will help you be able to deal with things that come up that normally set you off and increase your stress. When you deal with the root causes you’ll find you don’t react as strongly to certain situations and your stress levels will stay lower over time.

If you’re looking for a great program to support you with a variety of techniques to help you crush your traumas and manifest the life of your dreams join The Intentional Manifestation Club! You can get started today for only $7!

4. Do a daily check-in

Right after school when you get home can often be a busy and stressful time. The kids are tired, you’re tired and everyone wants to run their separate ways. There are school activities, homework and sometimes general moodiness. But this can be the best time for some connection.

Every day, when you get home from school pick-up, try taking an extra couple of minutes to do a daily check-in with your kids before they rush off. Ask them how their day was, what was something that made them smile, what was something that made them unhappy and ask them if there is anything they’re excited to show you.

Don’t do this at the school when there are hoards of kids and parents rushing around or in the car when you’re driving and you’re not looking at them, instead do this when you’re at home. That way you can look them in the eyes, give them your undivided attention and potentially give them some extra love and a hug if they need it. If you can do this 1:1 with your kids but if not, you can ask them together.

5. After they go to bed do a daily check-in for you

Once they’re down for the night give yourself a couple of extra minutes. If you have a spouse this is a great time to check in with each other and for connection. But in the quiet of the evening start by taking a couple of deep breaths. 

Then if you can you can do some journaling to check in and reflect on the day. You can also create a check-in routine with your spouse, if applicable, and see where you’re both at as you end the day. Create a scale to see how everything is going. 

You can do that as soon as you both get home. I love Brené Brown’s system where she and her husband share the percentages of what they have to give. They always need to be equal to 100. If he’s had a long day and is exhausted he might say “I’ve got 20” and she might be like “No problem, I’ll cover you with the other 80” and vice versa. Then you and your spouse can chat about what the other can do to help in that moment.

If it’s just you, do the check-in by yourself. Reflect on where you’re at and what you have to give. Then ask yourself what you need in order to increase that number; in other words, what you need in order to fill your cup. It might be reading your favourite book for a bit after they’re asleep, it might be doing a 5-minute meditation, it might be listening to a motivational podcast or maybe it’s diving into a creative pursuit.

In short, taking care of your stress and your kids’ stress during back-to-school can be a tricky maneuver.

It can feel like an impossible undertaking. However, trust me when I say, create a list of preventative strategies for stress management! It’s the best way to make this time enjoyable and exciting!


P.S. Looking for specific ways to support your kiddos? Check out this article by the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation