So, Mom and Dad, your skin in the game is to wake up to the fact that you need to feel the importance of preparation for your child’s success. Your participation in the process and your desire to make it fun for everyone is key. Permit me to share a story of my visits to my family in California when my grandchildren were young. I’d barely touched down and unpacked when Katrina and Neil literally dragged me to their rooms fighting over who would go first – first to do their closets, organize their games and set up their desks for school. No – these kids were not brainwashed – well, maybe they were – a little, because Grammy started playing this “game” with them from the time they were three. They actually thought we were playing, not working and after “playing”, there was always a special treat. As I am writing this article today, Katrina and her Mom are heading to the University of Oregon for freshman orientation and to get her room assignment. Those early lessons in making the most of her personal space, I know will help her smoothly transition to dorm life. (She’s already told me that if her roommate is a slob, she’s putting a “do not cross” line down the middle of the room!)
What about your kids? Have you helped them to value and maintain their personal space? It’s not too late to start. Of course, if the rest of your home doesn’t reflect this philosophy, how do you expect your kids to respond? The famous four words – “clean up your room” never works. “Do what I do, not what I say” is generally the response to expect. So, dear reader, the less hectic summer time for you can be the best time to get your house in order, as well. You may want to relax and blow it all off, but September, school, carpools, sports activities and the holidays are all coming. Why not think of giving up a little down time, now, as your way to reward yourself this fall with a little less stress? The benefits of a clean, organized home to your peace of mind and pride of place are truly extraordinary. It’s a great feeling everyone deserves and it costs no money – only time and a willingness to make it happen. Do it with humor and a willingness to live and give a better life to your family, and everyone will benefit.