It's a new school year, how are you and your co-parent doing? Are you struggling early on? Do you feel like this is a better year than it has been? Wherever you and your co-parent are, it's time for a game plan for this school year.
Here are my tips for making it work:
- Start Fresh. This is a new year for you as well as a new year for your children. Whatever happened last year or the years prior are simply learning experiences. They're not something to dwell on, this is a new year! If you're telling your children that this is a year to start fresh, it applies to you, too. Let go of the past arguments and go into this year with the knowledge of the last years, but with a fresh attitude towards it.
- Update your writing skills. You already know that documentation and communication should be done in writing wherever possible. Do it simply because it protects you. This year, I want you to think about what it is you're writing and follow these steps:
- Leave your emotions out of it. Keep it to the facts wherever possible.
- Keep it brief. Your ex will be more likely to read an email that's brief than one that's long and winded.
- Be positive. The more accusatory you are, the less likely your email will be read. The more positive you are, the better the chance of moving the conversation forward and accomplishing whatever you need to.
- Focus on what matters. As much as your ex may be driving you insane already this school year, every minute you spend thinking about your ex is a minute you lose thinking about what matters to you. Your ex is going to continue to be your ex. You're divorced for a reason, right? Focus on your children! Focus on providing a home that you can be proud of. Focus on what you have control over. It's not your ex, is it? As long as you focus on what matters, the things your ex does to make it difficult will bother you less and less.
- Discover solutions, not problems. It's easy to get caught up in what the problems are (i.e. your ex), but this year - stop focusing on the problem! Instead, ask yourself, "How can I make the best of this situation?" and then do that! The problems will always be there, focusing on the solution moves you past the problem.
It doesn't matter where you were last year. This is a new year, it's time to start fresh. It's time to take the lessons learned and apply them here while also trying something different. Comment below with what you're going to do this year to make it as successful as you can for your children!