How's school going? 
Also, how's work going? 
Also how's your sleep these days? 
Has your 10 year old forgotten to flush the toilet again?

...yep. Me too.

BUT here is the thing that I can tell you as I write this at 10am (my most cheerful and energetic time of day). I'm trying my best to use the word "challenge" instead of "hard" in my daily language. (Great-big thanks to my daughter's 2nd grade teacher for this amazing lesson).

The thought process goes like this...when we tell ourselves that something is "hard" or "too hard", most of us stop right there and wallow in that sorrow. But if we recognize our situation as "challenging", it implies that we can keep trying, that we can do our best, and that we are strong enough to keep going.

As a very human, working parent like so many of you, I definitely need to remind myself of these words of wisdom because about 12 hours after my "cheerful" time of day, you *might* find me exhausted, decision-fatigued, and fully wallowing in a bucket of my own tears. Ha!

So I'd like to inspire you and your families to include the word "challenge" in your everyday language.

Some examples from my house:

  • spelling tests are challenging
  • hiking uphill is challenging
  • remembering to flush the toilet is challenging (see how I pulled that back in?-wink)
  • getting dinner on the table only to be greeted by really whiny kids who "hate" this dinner is challenging (are ya with me on this one?!)
Make it a game! 
  • Have the kids start a tally on the fridge every time they hear "hard" instead of "challenge"- milkshakes to celebrate your successes at the end of the week!
  • Collect a penny from the person who says "hard" instead of "challenge"
  • earn a chocolate chip each time a person uses "challenge"
And please(!) share other ideas you have to keep spirits lifted during these challenging times. I need all the ideas I can get!