The September Squeeze: How to Choose Sanity As You Enter Fall Summer fun is done and the crush of September is here. Use these 5 tips to make this month move smoothly. BY JAMEE TENZER, PCC
Remembering that you don't have to do everything for everyone will help you keep your sanity.
“ Summer feels like life after one glass of wine. You may still be busy, but you’re just a little more relaxed.”
The September Squeeze: As I write those words, I feel my throat tightening, my heart thumping and my brow glistening with sweat. It’s like a little three-piece combo that plays the hot nightclub inside me: "Come down and see us, we’re here the entire month of September!"
And here’s why the squeeze happens. First of all, we just had summer. Even if we were carting kids to and from camp, there is still an ease in summer that just cannot be taken for granted. Summer feels like life after one glass of wine. You may still be busy, but you’re just a little more relaxed. September feels like you’d like to have a glass of wine, but you agreed to be the designated driver.
September is not like any other month. September is the beginning of school which includes "back to school night," school supplies, new teachers, heavier work-loads, figuring out sports, dance, music and how your children are going to get to all the places they need to go once they figure out where the heck they are going.
And it’s not just parents that feel the squeeze in September. The workplace is squeezed too. Your colleagues have taken their vacations and they too are dealing with getting back to work and possibly getting their children back to school. All of this transition from summer to the squeeze makes everyone feel a little less juicy.
I’d love to say it’s possible to survive the squeeze without losing any juice, but unless you are living on a mountain top somewhere, it is unlikely.
Here’s the good news! You can minimize the juice you lose this September by realizing that you cannot do it all. It is humanly impossible for you to do everything you need to do. Isn’t that a relief? No matter how much you cram in, how late you stay up or how much you bend into a pretzel—it’s not happening.
Your job is to get rid of most of those items on your to-do list. Here’s how.
5 "D" Tips for Avoiding the Squeeze in September:
1. Delete. You know the PTA President personally. She is a lovely woman. You just got 12 e-mails from her in one day. Delete. If she really needs you, believe me, she’ll ask again.
2. Delegate. Find 3 things that you can delegate right now. Ask your husband, your kids, your mother, your best friend or the cat. Someone will help you. Make sure the requests are clearly defined.
3. Disappoint. Everyone wants you to do everything all the time for everyone. Say "no" and then say "no" again. Yes, people will be disappointed. Once they are truly disappointed because you are not able to do, get, bring, buy, take, figure out or solve, they will either figure out another way or do it themselves.
4. Demonstrate. Take the time to demonstrate to your children how a person takes care of themselves by getting enough rest and exercise. And also by having clear boundaries, saying "no" when necessary and making self-care a commitment.
5. Dance. In the shower, at the sink, in your office, at the gym or while brushing your teeth—do a little dance. Put on some music you like or dance to silence, either way just enjoy the very right-brained joy of dancing.
Once you have incorporated the 5 "D’s" into your busy life, you will have turned your September Squeeze into The September Breeze.
Jamee Tenzer, PCC is a Life and Executive Coach for Women. She specializes in coaching working mothers, women in entertainment and 50-something moms. She is also a Trainer for the International Coach Academy and Mentors new coaches. Visit www.shesarealmother.com for mom tips and more free stuff. Check out Jamee's book: https://jameetenzer.com/balance.