A new school year has begun.  Many families are feeling like a ton of bricks just fell on their shoulders: There is endless homework, lunch boxes to fill, soccer games, dance classes, school open house… on and on.

We expect so much from ourselves, thinking that we should be able to do it all, AND take a phone call from a relative in the middle of the morning “getting the kids ready for school” routine,  OR needing to be the room mother for all 3 of your children OR making sure your child has the “right” present for her/his classmate’s birthday party.

The list of issues that provoke guilt is endless!  

Here are a few tips that may help: allow yourself to take shortcuts, e.g. turn off phones/computers during those busy times: when getting the kids off to school, meal times and kids’ bedtimes   –car pool: don’t push yourself to be at every practice, game or lesson – your kids will not love you less    –set a budget for birthday presents and stick to it.

Most important, when you hear yourself starting sentences with “I should….” remind yourself of 3 specific “good mom” things you did very recently…keeping in mind that “good” can be as simple as I gave my daugher my undivided attention for 2 minutes (120 seconds).  And finally, imagine yourself tossing the guilt right out the door.

Stay tuned for more about what really matters: your kids and YOU!


Connie Bessette, MSW