Do you get anxious about school holidays?
Schools will be breaking up soon for a whole six weeks and as much as children will be looking forward to this time with excitement and anticipation, you may well see it as a huge great black cloud on the horizon.
Like many parents, your stress levels will already be rising as you visualise the chaos and boredom, not to mention sibling rivalry!!!
You may even have the first day of the autumn term highlighted on the calendar as the finish line of a momentous marathon that you are currently preparing for!
You are not alone. I can help you with this.
Benjamin Franklin famously said: “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” So, why not plan for success.
What some Savvy Parents said about the School Holidays
I spoke to some modern- day parents, as my days of parenting are many years behind me and some things have changed.
One set of parents in particular gave me some very good tips and ideas and I will be sharing a few of them with you here in this article.
It was an eye opener for me because we had plenty of things to occupy us in my school holidays.
However, I do get what’s happening to parents today, remembering back to my children’s holiday breaks.
I was lucky because my wife was a stay at home mum and was very good at keeping the little ones occupied until I got home to 3 little children pouncing on me as came through the door for their daily father-children romp.
The one thing I can say is that whether it’s now or back then, the stories are the same on some level.
There’s the guilt of having to work and the cost of taking them out. Feelings of stress and anxiety will be increased because we feel like we are letting them down by not being there, we may even feel some element of fear.
And what is F.E.A.R……it’s simply Future Events Appearing Real?
We have this idea that we need to entertain our children, so we put pressure on ourselves to perform, sometimes to the detriment of their wellbeing.
Life simply goes on – so we just have to get on with it and cope, but what if you didn’t have to or what if you simply cannot cope with this increased anxiety?
Surveys have shown that the biggest concerns about summer holidays are:
- Not enough money and time off work
- Cost of childcare
- Children safety
- Who will look after the children
Lack of structure and routine in the summer coupled with boredom creates pressure on both the parents and children.
There is too much pressure on parents to do more and to take the children to new places.
Working parents have added stress if they have no one close who can look after their children. These things can bring even more guilt and feelings of stress will rise to the surface.
What you can do to help yourself.
1. Make a Plan of Action: – check out things like:
a) Local events
b) Activity places
c) School activity
d) Kids club
e) Primary Times Magazine given to pupils by the schools
2. Research: – What’s on in Your Local Area?
a) Hadleigh Country Park
b) Clubs run by the schools for working parents (e.g. Belchamps Camp in Hockley)
c) Belfairs Woodland Centre
d) Join or Create a WhatsApp parent support club
e) Primary Times Magazine handed out by schools
These are just few areas that I’ve found through my research in very little time, I’m sure with a little effort a savvy parent can find a lot more activities to provide enjoyment for both themselves and their child/children during the school holidays.
Quotes from Parents I Spoke to:
“Kids will still say to you “we’re bored, we’re bored, we’re bored”, but you know what, kids will always say that. They will always make you feel guilty, because that’s just what they do.”
“We make it more complicated, kids are quite happy to do basic things”
“Parents seem to have it in their heads that they have to spend money to make their children happy”
Reduce/Eliminate school holiday anxieties, fears and worries:
Whether you live in a house with a garden or a flat it doesn’t matter. All you have to do is make a school holiday plan and follow it. You may have to make slight adjustments but you will develop a plan that works, which you can use for ANY school holiday.
Typical Weeks Plan of Savvy Parents
Monday – do nothing day – stay at home – maybe some crafts and baking
Tuesday – cinema using 2 for 1 ticket – take own snacks – and maybe beach, the woods or something else that costs nothing but your time.
Wednesday – play day, games with the kids, visit parks or a picnic if weather is nice.
Thursday – another at home day – use arts and craft box
Friday – woods, beach or something local (there is plenty going on for children in the holidays if we look)
Weekend – follow your usual routine
Savvy Family’s visit to the London Dungeons during the School Holiday
C2C do a buy 1 get 1 free to London attractions during school holidays
Train fare for a family of 4 was about £41
Using Tesco’s vouchers they paid £20, which saved them over £80, however it would have been free had they book up in advance, but they weren’t sure which day they’d be going.
I can help YOU!
It is easy for us to feel overwhelmed by such situations.
After reading this article I hope you will feel that speaking to someone impartial will help you to see a way through this stress and anxiety.
I can support you by teaching you coping strategies to enable you to enjoy the holidays and importantly to enjoy spending time with your children.
Please get in touch to claim your FREE no obligation consultation by clinking the link contact me or call Vernon on 07866 730941.
Families having fun together