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Regain Momentum

You miss the days that seemed to skate along, when you felt like you had the spark to move forward.

Now you feel bogged down, stuck in a rut.

The good news is, you can get out of it! Changing little things adds up to a big difference.

Get rid of guilt.

Losing momentum is normal. It happens to everyone—veteran moms included. Even the most experienced teachers have trouble picking up speed sometimes.

There’s nothing wrong with you.

It doesn’t happen because you’re not committed or not smart or not capable. It happens because you’re human. Your kids are human. (And anything worth doing takes a lot of work.)

Realize your homeschooling will go through different seasons, just like life, and that God’s grace will help you through.

Don’t try to do it all at once.

Unless you school year-round, your kids get used to a different life during summer break and the holidays. There’s more staying up late and sleeping in late, more fun and more comfort food.

It’s hard to give up “vacation mode.” So save yourself some grief—don’t jump in feet first and expect things to go just like they did before break.

A few days or a couple of weeks before break is over (depending on how long your break is) start easing back into normal bedtimes, wake-up times, food choices, and meal times. That way you’re not expecting too much of yourself or your kids when it’s time to focus on schooling again.

Keep going.

Take “I can’t do this” out of your family’s vocabulary.

Once you pick up momentum, it will get easier. The hardest part is getting it rolling.

Appreciate your progress.

If everything seems to be going wrong, ask “What went right?” (because there will always be something) or “What did I do today?” Getting the kids up, teaching character, cooking dinner—those are all accomplishments.

If you’ve made it out to the library, that’s progress. If you’ve gotten piano lessons back on track, that’s progress. If you did some planning today, that’s progress.

“Have we gone backwards?”

If you can answer “No,” that’s progress! Give yourself some credit for that.

What if you answered “Yes”? That’s progress, too, as long as you learn from it. (Yes, even a disastrous day, week, month, year, isn’t a loss when you learn from it.)

Ask “What could motivate me or my kids?”

If you spent just 3 minutes answering that question, what would you come up with?

Try it and see!

After you’re done, pick some ideas to implement.

Planning a vacation, making favorite meals—even simple things like buying new school supplies or rearranging your space—can bring a motivating sense of newness or provide a sweet reward worth sacrificing for.

Compare yourself to yourself.

Don’t compare how you’re doing to the public schools, the private schools, or other moms on Facebook. Let your standard be doing your best for that day and nothing less.

Then measure your progress. For instance, if it takes you 15 days to get back into the swing of things this year, give yourself 15 days next year. If it takes you 6 days to cover 4 days’ worth of lessons this week, adjust for that next week.

What about when the stomach bug goes around your house, you have surprise visitors, or you welcome another baby into your family?

Do your best, and don't stress yourself with comparisons of how much you used to do. You’re not a machine. Homeschooling isn’t a race. And you have the control and flexibility of homeschooling on your side.