with Cam Petty
Finally… it’s summer! The best time of the year IMO. Sometimes it feels tricky trying to balance work and make the most of this season. Additionally, it can feel even harder to accomplish having a restful summer while balancing work AND being a parent. This one is for you. Those who are balancing work and parenting, we see you!
Obviously, the majority of our listeners who are parents likely know their children very well (maybe even better than their kids know themselves). Assuming you know everything you should know about your kids can be a little foolish. That’s why Cam stresses in this episode about taking extra steps in getting to know your kids during these summer months so you can be fully aware of their needs, desires, or other fun ways you can connect.
There are so many free resources online when it comes to personality assessments. Cam and our team particularly enjoy the Enneagram. In this specific assessment, participants are placed in one of 9 categories. Although the categories are titled the numbers from 1-9, the enneagram isn’t a test that ranks you on any sort of scale between the numbers. For instance, a person who tests a 1 isn’t better or worse than someone who tests as a 9, and vice versa.
The best way for you and your kiddos to figure out which Enneagram number they are is to self-assess by reading information about numbers you test close to. You can try this website for a free Enneagram assessment. Once you complete the questionnaire, take note of the numbers you had the highest score in, then read about the different numbers here to see which one you align with most.
Again, there are other personality assessments you can take but the point we want to draw here is knowing your kid’s personality can help you connect with them better.
Thinking back to when you were a kid, do most of your memories take place in the summertime? Cam’s do, mine do, maybe your’s do too! I can still remember exploring Yellowstone and seeing Mount Rushmore with my family. We visited the sand dunes in South Dakota one summer and my sisters and I thought they were the coolest thing! Other memories that are less extravagant, but still present, are going to the pool with my mom or playing outside trying to catch lightning bugs. All of them take place in the summer. Like Cam, there is a random school memory or holiday gathering but most of them were when I was out of school.
During the school year, it’s easier to account for working 40 hours a week. Your kids are in school or off to college for the majority of that time. During the summer months, though they are home and in some ways or others seeking your attention. We want to encourage our mothers, fathers, grandparents, and caretakers of any person to be even more intentional with how they spend their time May-August.
Especially if you’re able to work remotely, how can you flex your work schedule to prioritize spending time with your kids? It’s not possible usually to give them all of your time— and sometimes they don’t want you to— but there may be ways that you can give them more. Consider working a couple of hours less during the day and making up what you need to after they’ve gone to bed or are hanging with their friends. Can you push some stuff off until the weekend when they’re with their cousins without missing any deadlines? Be proactive when organizing your schedule to know where you can give them more time.
I think sometimes we assume that the people around us don’t want to understand our workload, or maybe with our kids that they won’t understand. Because of this we can easily keep those around us in the dark about how busy or open our schedules can be. Talk to your kids about how much time you need to work in a day. Explain to them at breakfast some of the tasks you need to get done before the day is over. Consider having a weekly check-in to share your time expectations. Try not just keep them in the dark or say you’ll be able to spend time with them later. This might make them misunderstand your business.
If possible, hang onto one or two routine things you typically do with your kids during the school year when everything falls into a schedule. This could look like reading together at night or making dinner together. You likely won’t keep all your school year routines (shout out to later bedtimes) but those small things you do throughout the year could be sweet pockets of time you know you can count on spending with each other.
Not being able to take off work just because your kids don’t have school is a very normal thing. Needing to prioritize projects and completing tasks at any point in the year is also normal. More so, enjoying work during the summer or going into the office while your kids are out of school is okay. Don’t let society tell you that you need to spend the entire summer off with your kids! If you can spend some intentional time with them, meet them where they’re at, and show up for them how they need you to, you’re already winning in our book.
Our team is here for you! If you have any questions pertaining to this week’s episode, shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We love hearing from you! You can also share any episode topics you would like for us to cover.
Here is a sneak peek of what this episode consists of:
[4:26] Understanding Your Kids Needs
[8:47] Mom’s Being Intentional With Time Off
[12:26] Talk About Your Time Expectations
[14:53] Prepare Any Help You Have
Product or Affiliate Links
Enneagram Reading – The Enneagram is Cam’s favorite personality assessment and can be so helpful for understanding more about your kids on a deeper level. Read about it here and consider if this is a good next step for your family this summer.
Busy Boxes on Pinterest – Create Busy Boxes for your kids while you focus on your daily task list. Pinterest has so many creative ideas!
Write us a review on Apple Podcast (here’s a “how-to”) – we choose episode topics based on your feedback!
Next week we will drop an episode about sharing tips on how we source and buy inventory.
TJ White | Content Manager
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