(Don't) Begin with the End in Mind


The CoronaVirus has proven globally that things don’t always go as planned. The ramifications of this pandemic on our education system have yet to be discovered while parents either wait with baited breath to learn the fate of their children’s academic environment or they’ve already chosen to homeschool out of exasperation with the circumstances.


As a life coach, I’m all about having a vision - especially when it comes to family. However, there is a difference between having a vision for your kids and having a specific picture of how your kids’ lives are supposed to look. The former involves your intentions for who your children will become while the latter involves your intentions for what your children “should be” doing.


Either way, we must ask ourselves, “Why am I homeschooling my kids?” If I am homeschooling because I want my young child to eventually graduate summa cum laude from an ivy league university, she and I will become exhausted and disheartened if she is not doing what she should do to make that happen. If I am utterly devastated because my son chooses not to attend college at all, then what was my “why” for homeschooling him in the first place? Was it about him attending college (because that’s what I think he should do) or was it about him becoming who he was created to be outside my jurisdiction?


It’s easy to focus on all the ways our kids’ education may not look like it’s supposed to right now. Are we disappointed? Sure.


AND…


When we know our deeper why for homeschooling, we begin to realize it’s not about finding the perfect curriculum, it’s not about ivy league universities, it’s not about the perils of adjusting to a pandemic, and it’s not about avoiding bad influences that could harm or corrupt our kids. Because ultimately, homeschooling is not about fear of what could happen or what might not happen.


We’ve all heard the phrase “begin with the end in mind.” If “the end” is simply your picture of how your children’s lives are supposed to look according to you, society, or whatever else you’re measuring them up to, you will have a stressful road ahead of you when reality doesn’t conform to your expectations and your control. This applies whether we’re talking about the age our child “should” be reading or what our kids’ schooling “should not” look like in the midst of a global pandemic.


On the other hand, if your deeper why for homeschooling can be traced to what you’re moving toward and to cultivating who your children are becoming, your kids can persevere - and even thrive - in the unexpected circumstances of life. Show them how to show up. Model how to “be” and equip them with courage, love, and a passion for life and learning. Encourage them to pursue their interests and to believe that anything’s possible for them. Teach them to move toward life rather than shrink from it.


There is no “end” to schooling if we aim to help our children become all God created them to be. When we graduate our homeschoolers, we are simply transitioning them into taking their own reins as they continue their journey of life-long learning and pursuing their God-given passions.


So I say, begin with “equipping them for their life-long journey” in mind, starting with what they need for today.




(For consistent, one-on-one coaching/consulting as you homeschool, contact Lisa at LisaDLifeCoach@gmail.com.)


Sun Prairie, Wisconsin