Back to school is a vital rite of passage for children and parents alike. But while the little ones are stocking their heads full of new lessons, adults could brush up on these often forgotten but always important life lessons:
1. Clean up your work space. Know what it feels like walking into a room littered with toys? It might not look so different from a messy work space. Just like “clean up time” in kindergarten, adults should make time to de-clutter and get organized at work. Freeing up a cluttered space can save up to one and a half hours of wasted time at work.
2. Stop and smell the roses. Days are full of “Hurry up” and “There’s no time for that!” But kids live very much in the moment, full of wonder at things many adults take for granted every day. When feeling overwhelmed by that growing to-do list, take a minute get some fresh air, calm down and simply revel in the wonder of being alive.
3. Be curious. Everything is new to kids. They want to know and experience it all (sometimes too much for a worried parent!). There’s no reason learning should stop after graduation. Take up a class, try a new hobby, or even practice a different language. Studies show that lifelong learning builds happiness and helps prevent Alzheimer’s.
4. Please and thank you. While kids are constantly reminded to “mind their manners,” many adults often struggle with stress and forget to be polite or grateful in daily interactions. It‟s during these stressful times that things like random acts of kindness, a simple thank you, and common courtesy are most important.
5. Ask for help. If kids aren’t getting the hang of something, whether it’s tying a shoelace or advanced physics, they are encouraged to get help. As adults, asking for help can feel like a weakness or things like pride and ego may stand in the way. But everyone, from toddlers to centenarians, needs help once in a while. When you need someone to talk to or some extra advice, simply asking for it can make all the difference.
What lessons are your kids teaching you? Share your back-to-school stories with us on Twitter @ACISpecBenefits.