Monday, 19 October 2015

How parents can stay calm during the HSC ???

I don't enjoy the HSC I am sorry to say, it is the one thing I still get nervous about for my daughters, although I try not to show it. It is not about the mark they are aiming for but the impact this whole experience is having on their well being, that I worry about. Three hour writing exams where you come out with blisters, pressure, pressure, pressure; comparisons, fears, constant study, more pressure. You have to wonder why we have set up such an extreme challenge for these gorgeous young adults in the name of education. What are we trying to prove?

Well one big positive that can come out of the HSC is that you learn how to handle pressure. (oh and getting an education is a privilege of course!) Life has a way of occasionally throwing up some tricky situations that test us. The ability to handle a challenge proactively is key. As parents there probably isn't a lot we can do by the time the exam starts to ease the pressure, aside from gentle encouragement, lots of compliments and questions like; 'How can I help?' Or 'What would you like to eat?' Followed by a 'You can do this, just do your best.'  (as we mutter...Life will go on no matter what mark you get and you can find a way into the course or career you want, with some determination or a good bridging course.)

Some children are stressed, some are working far too hard and not sleeping, some are a bit too casual. As parents we are trying to read the signs and make sure our son or daughter is Ok. The impact of concern can also be stressful for some parents. I don't like the process but I am not letting it stress me out. Our calm demeanour can have a very settling effect on a child under pressure. So I thought you might like some tips on staying calm when you are watching your child learn how to manage pressure.

At the end of the day we can't sit the exam for them (for many students, including my daughters, they can be pleased about that.) Watching a close family member or friend experience a challenge can be hard as well, when there isn't a lot we can do. A proactive approach is to be actively calm, healthy and happy. As soon as the HSC started my fitness routine improved, as did my eating and self discipline with writing goals. I want to be good company for Kaylie and have a great routine. so there are many opportunities for us to eat a great meal together, go for a walk or prepare for a great nights sleep.

I am living very much in the moment, enjoying the detail in each day (not hard as the weather in Sydney is divine) and also very mindful of my breath. Our own calming, deep and steady breath can have an impact on everyone around us. Soon the HSC will be complete, just as harvest begins and we will return to the farm for the next 'family challenge,' the long hours and rush of crop stripping, hay making and stock work, meals, bookwork, housework and keeping the garden alive.

I take my role as a mum very seriously but these days I realise that the greatest gift you can give your children is trust in them and your own happiness. My personal goals of getting my web site live and creating audio and eCourse products, feels so good. I feel like I am in line with my true purpose. Who would have thought the HSC could be so...manageable.

Good luck everyone...breathe well

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