Look On The Bright Side. Really? Yes!

As I write this, I’m fully aware that you may find the title of this piece, “Look On The Bright Side” slightly annoying. At this point in the admissions process, you’re probably thinking, “it’s easy for her to say” or “how can I look on the bright side when I’m anxious and filled with uncertainty”? If @#&$!*! is all you can say, I totally get it.


Perfectly imperfect is how I see the admissions process–no matter what the outcome, this phrase seems to apply. I’m comfortable saying “look on the bright side” because I’ve been there. I was the mom applying to private elementary schools a few years ago. I rode the daily roller coaster of emotions. I was thrilled to submit written applications. I was nervous about parent interviews. I was dreading the testing days.


Similar to white water rafting, this process can jolt even the most steel-nerved parent. Ups and downs, and a stomach-turning ride of a lifetime that you just wish would end soon. So, if you find yourself feeling like you’re upside down in the middle of the river, you’re not alone. You have to be able to turn the boat over and start back down the river.


We talk about keeping your stress under control during the admissions process in Beyond The Brochure. Its an important part of getting to the end to get that “fat envelope” or acceptance letter (s). Here are some tips for anyone driven to distraction by this unique, anxiety-producing process–that is to say, all of us:


  1. The key to making it through admissions processes is to pace yourself. You need the endurance of a professional marathoner. Staying power, as they call it.
  2. You need to be really organized. Both of these things will benefit you and help you stay calm.
  3. Be prepared for your parent interviews. Do your homework about each school.
  4. Ask for help if you need it. See our blog interviews with top educational consultants (see links below).
  5. Ignore the endless preschool rumors and gossip.
  6. Be confident about what your family has to offer each school
  7. Be willing to re-set your expectations about a particular school if necessary
  8. Try not to care what anyone else thinks about where you apply or where your child is accepted. You may never see that parent again after you leave preschool!
  9. Aim high. This is your child’s education that will last him/her a lifetime.
  10. Look on the bright side! The outcome can be well worth all your efforts for your child and your family!