Photo by Michele Venne

Although we develop and break habits throughout our lives, if we create helpful behaviors younger in life, they are more likely to stick around as we age. Helping students create positive habits involving organization, priorities, time management, effort, collaboration, and work ethic while in school can set them up for lifelong success.

All of those habits don’t come naturally. Discovering or creating ways to get and stay organized means that items aren’t lost and time isn’t wasted looking for misplaced items. Priorities and time management are two sides of one coin. Modeling for students how to schedule time for the tasks that are most important is vital. Many of us as adults don’t feel like we get much done, even though we’re busy all day, every day. That’s often because we spend a lot of time doing small, unimportant or low priority tasks. Work ethic must be taught. Only a few people can get through life on charm and relying on others doing the work for them. Most of us learn young what is important to us and how to apply effort to finish something. It’s a skill coveted by employers. It’s what creates successful people.

Not all habits should be about efficiency and completing tasks. Habits involving self-care could support the mental, physical, and emotional health of students throughout their lives. Setting aside time away from school and extracurricular demands, without using technology, allows students to reflect on their thoughts and emotions. The better they know themselves, the more tools are available to them to solve problems.

Taking time for relaxation, extra rest when needed, celebrating the positives each day, and acknowledging those who support them are good habits and small ways that students can show others, and themselves, a little love.