Hey, homeschoolers! You may know that I am a big fan of fashion. Ever since being introduced to Get Your Pretty On with Alison Lumbatis, I love putting pieces from my closet, thrift shops, and other stores together to create a capsule wardrobe. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, I encourage you to listen to the interview I did with Alison.
Get Your pretty On has not only changed the way I dress, but it has changed the way I think about myself and my life. That’s what this episode is all about. I’m going to help you make your homeschool a heck-yes. In the meantime, I encourage you to check out the summer capsule wardrobe list that is available now. Check it out by going to Psychowith6.com/GYPO. If a seasonal wardrobe is not what you’re looking for, I highly recommend the Closet Staples list that you will find at the same link.
If it’s not a heck-yes, it’s a no.
One of Alison’s foundational principles in choosing clothing is if it’s not a heck-yes, it’s a no. It’s taken me nearly three years, but I finally determined warning signs that a piece of clothing is not a heck-yes for me. These are the seven signs.
- It only looks good when I stand or sit a certain way.
- It doesn’t look good in a selfie.
- I keep messing with it.
- I wish it was different in some way and keep looking for an alternative.
- I keep wondering if it’s the wrong size, length, color, or style for me.
- I don’t want to wear it right away.
- I’m uncomfortable in it or relieved to take it off.
At this point you may be wondering what this has to do with homeschooling? It wasn’t long after I made my list of signs that an item wasn’t a heck-yes that I realized the concept applied to homeschooling and life.
How to make your curriculum a heck-yes.
Let’s start with curriculum, as I know many of you are on the hunt right now. The appearance aspects of heck-yes probably don’t apply, but I’m looking at sign #4. It applies to curriculum in a big way.
If you wish a curriculum was different in some way and you keep looking for an alternative, it’s not a heck-yes for you. It may be a heck-yes for all of your friends, but not for you. Don’t worry. I’m going to help ease the pain of admitting you made the wrong choice in a bit.
What about the style of your curriculum? Do you keep wondering if it’s the right one? Are you worried that it will be too dull or too time-intensive? Perhaps you plan to unschool without traditional curriculum and you’re worried about that. If you keep having these thoughts, the curriculum or homeschool style may not be a heck-yes for you.
Let’s move to the next sign it’s not a heck-yes: You aren’t excited to get started. Other things you have, you look forward to using. But not this one. It may not be a heck-yes.
Sign #7 for my clothing choices is that I’m uncomfortable in it or relieved to take it off. With curriculum, you need to try it out to be sure. Do a sample lesson if you haven’t purchased yet or get started if you have. Try a week of unschooling. Are you happy to be done with it? Does it feel uncomfortable? If so, it may not be a heck-yes.
I don’t mean to suggest that the right curriculum will be rainbows and unicorns every day. It won’t. I get tired of even the best pieces of clothing. But something my mom said to me years ago when I was dating Mr. Wrong in grad school came to mind with respect to clothing. I kept telling my mom we were working on the relationship. She said, “You shouldn’t have to work on the relationship from the beginning.”
My clothing choices shouldn’t be work to look and feel good from the get-go, and neither should your curriculum. It should feel smooth and comfortable. But what if you’re trying a whole new approach to homeschooling, you may ask. I can relate to that with clothing, too. It felt odd to wear mules and tops that required a strapless bra at first. That’s fine. But I shouldn’t be wishing these pieces were different and relieved to take them off. A new approach to teaching may be a heck-yes for you, but not if you can’t wait to finish using it.
How to cope with curriculum that isn’t a heck-yes
When I started using these rules with clothing, I felt awful at first. I had spent loads of time and money on things I couldn’t return. It was embarrassing honestly. But here’s how I felt better about it and how you can, too.
First, I can sell things that aren’t heck-yeses. There are many ways to sell your curriculum. Here’s a comprehensive list I made for how to do that.
Second, I can donate things that aren’t heck-yeses. I love to thrift shop and get a thrill when I find something beautiful for a bargain. Giving my clothes away potentially gives another woman that experience. The same list gives you options for donating curriculum as well. What isn’t a heck-yes for you may well be for someone else.
Third, I recognize what I’ve learned. I don’t buy shirts with crew necks anymore, for example. You’ll know that certain types of curriculum just aren’t for you going forward–even if your friends love it. It will save you trememndous time, money, and regret.
By the way, not finding a heck-yes language arts curriculum is what drove me to create Grammar Galaxy. I wish I would have had it for all my kids, but I needed to learn before I could write it. You’re becoming an expert in what works for your family, too. The 7th-grade volume of Grammar Galaxy called Nova is now available. It is a review and expansion of the concepts taught in the first three volumes. It includes optional advanced writing projects with each unit. Find a complete sample to try at FunToLearnBooks.com/samples. I hope it is a heck-yes for you!
How to apply the heck-yes philosophy to the rest of your life.
We can have similar rules for determining when a relationship, schedule, or activity isn’t a heck-yes. I once had a friend who made me feel bad about myself every time I was with her. It was not a heck-yes friendship. If I never want to follow my schedule, it’s not a heck-yes and needs to be changed. And if an activity doesn’t make me happy after I’ve completed it, it’s not a heck-yes.
I even applied this heck-yes philosophy to my habits. Here are some that are not heck-yeses for me:
- Checking email and social media in the morning.
- Eating chocolate after meals.
- Going to bed after 11 p.m.
I hope I have you thinking about what is and is not a heck-yes in your wardrobe, your curriculum, and your life. Even though it can be painful to recognize that you’ve invested time or money into something that doesn’t work, the lessons you learn can be invaluable. Have a happy homeschool week!