Your little baby is now a 12th grader, it’s October and he or she is alternating between panic and seeming obliviousness to all that needs to be done. You’re a bundle of nerves!
“Oh no” you moan, “everything’s behind schedule.”
You didn’t take the SAT’s or ACT last year. Which one should you take? Did you register for the exam and get a confirmation? Have you chosen your top college picks yet? Are you considering early admissions? I haven’t seen your essay! What about your letters of recommendation? Have you requested and received them? We haven’t made plans to visit any colleges yet… time is running out! You’re not paying any attention to deadlines! Don’t you care? Would please stop texting for a minute and listen to me!!!
“I can’t breathe. The sky’s falling. I’m not going to live through this year. Where’s my Xanax?”
Hopefully, you just whispered all this to yourself and didn’t alarm your 17-year-old. Everything in good time is a pleasant, relaxed and achievable model to live by.
You’re a parent — you have the right to worry all you want. If it makes you feel any better indulge yourself. However, fretting over all that might go wrong does nothing to help.
You can’t put a price on peace of mind. So, if you feel like you’re being hurtled through space at warp speed, use a little time capital to put everything in perspective.
Take a step back and think about how you are coming across to your teen. Become the family ship’s captain as you help navigate the choppy waters of your teen’s college or trade school application. Captains are trained never to show worry or fear no matter how big the iceberg looks!
Think positively and read below to help make 12th grade an enjoyable year for the whole family.
Begin By De-Stressing!
Instead of holding your breath, why not sit down, relax and be mindful as you slowly breathe in and out? Experience what you are feeling deep inside as well as consciously with the swirling cyclone that seems poised to suck you in.
“Live in the moment.” And make sure it is one that will be a fond memory.
Mindfulness has become part of our culture. Take some time to read up on it and you may find it becomes an incredibly rewarding lifelong practice.
Now let’s get down to brass tacks so you get something useful from the time spent reading this article.
A Quick Mind Acrobatics(TM) Exercise That’s Sure to Help!
Grab a pen or pencil and a pad of paper. If a glass of wine with a piece of Stilton or a Twinkie helps, indulge. Make this fun!
- List everything you can think of that needs to be done as you and your child gear up and prepare for the great adventure of “The Pre-College Experience.”
- Don’t over think.
- Simply free associate and write everything that comes to mind.
- Right now, it’s stream of consciousness brainstorming.
- Whether your list has 2 items or 200 it doesn’t matter.
- We’re just identifying what’s rooting around very close to the surface of your mind.
STOP READING, GO BACK AND DO THE EXERCISE NOW! Return when you’ve completed this little mind excursion.
Okay… you’re back. I hope you found the exercise helpful. You’ve compiled a list of all things college application related that are plaguing you. Identifying them is half the battle. You’re 50% home and it’s only early October!
Here is even more assistance.
There’s lots of information available on the Internet listing deadlines and absolutely everything you need to know and do when applying to college.
Contact me on my author page. Put College Admissions in the subject. I’ll send you links — Chock -O-Block filled with comprehensive deadline information that will simplify your life.
Information is empowering. The tenor of your home life for the coming school year will change dramatically.
One of the reason parents get “Senior Year Frazzle” is they’ don’t know all that’s expected of them and their child. It creates a free-floating anxiety that can quickly degenerate into sheer bedlam, depression and more.
This may be the last year your child is living at home. Why not let it be filled with frolic and fun rather than fear and frustration?
If you’ve completed the exercise and requested the links, you have all the resources you need to prepare for the college application process at your fingertips.
You’re finished for today. Forget about impending deadlines. Go out and have some fun. Relax, hit a movie, a spa, eat something unhealthy… for in 48 hours or so you’ll be ready and armed to move forward expeditiously. All without stress!
The next article in this series we’ll walk through setting goals and actions that will allow you the freedom to make the most of the time you share with your child.
We’re in this together, you and I. You’ve taken the first and most important step. OK, LET YOUR BREATH OUT NOW!
Watch this fun video with you 12th grader. It might help to kick-start a great conversation!
Originally published on Huffington Post.
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