It may still be August, but with school starting this week, the fleeting days of summer are upon us and I love it. Fall is my favorite season for so many reasons, and no, not all the pumpkin spice. But, I do love sweater weather, fall campfires and that brisk chill in the air that comes with the entrance of all things apple & orange.
I always loved the transition of carefree summer days into the colorful array of new crayons, highlighters, crisp notebooks and the expected evolution of the leaves into their fiery form. This is such an exciting time and, in my opinion, so much better than New Years for making resolutions.
This time of year, we are inundated with schedules and routine. Monday through Friday, if you have kids or are a teacher, coach or have ANY relationship with a school, the days become more predictable. With that, building new schedules, habits and plans is easier. Plus, as the schedules are forced back upon us, there is less expectation of major change compared to New Years, so adding a few resolutions in now feels so much more relaxed and flexible.
In packing backpacks, doing homework and coordinating outfits and sports gear, routines for laundry and cleaning become nearly automatic. This sense of routine may seem dull at first blush, but it is anything but.
One thing I have learned this summer through all of my reading, studying and implementing new personal and career development plans, is that habit and schedule paradoxically allow for more free time and spontaneity. The routines and habits of the day-to-day result in more efficiency (read: less time looking for the car keys or clean socks - yes, we have all been there). That extra time becomes an opening to read, write, exercise, call a friend, play with the legos, enjoy the glass of wine on the patio with your significant other or whatever else you want to enrich your life with. For me, it is so much more feasible to plan to write later in the evening now, when I know my children will be falling asleep earlier, as the dark slides in minutes faster each day.
Tomorrow, as the weekend starts with a lazy breakfast with my kids, I know we will have more time to actually relax due to the new routines we added. The backpacks are already back in their place, the laundry for next week is done and the schedule is set. The anticipated entrance of Fall can bring its own sense of freedom, of energy for change and transition - embrace the momentum and choose something to add to you routine.