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BEGINNER'SI adore calendars. When I was a kid, I loved buying day planners for some reason. I guess I wanted to keep track of my coloring and play time. Ha!

Somehow that love still continues today.

I find that if I don’t put something on the calendar that I can’t keep track of it at all, which I think is one of the consequences of being full-time office job-er and a little more than part-time cheer coach/blogger.

But putting something on the calendar is one extra step that I’m willing to take. In fact, I’m going to take it even further and plan out fall before it gets close and show you how to do it too.

Start with school dates

Every school has probably already planned their academic calendars for the next year. You’ll want to get a hold of one, if you don’t have it already.

Now look at the schedule at write down the major dates like …

  • First day of school
  • Any holidays
  • Any major testing days
  • Any scheduled breaks
  • Big school events

Boom. It’s on the calendar and you’ll know about it when that one parent asks if they can go on vacation in the middle of the year.

Your big performance items

These are the items that your team will spend a ton of time working on. They may take extra practices and definitely take a lot of preparation.

Write down on your calendar stuff like …

  • Homecoming
  • Pep Rally dates
  • Competitions
  • Other regular performances

Look at you go! You’re making some amazing progress here. Let’s keep going.

Games

Okay, you may or may not have a game schedule yet. I think it’s pretty likely that your fall football schedule is in the works if not complete, so check with your athletic director and see if you can’t grab an advance copy.

You may want to write these in pencil for now and change to pen later if you think some change will be happening.

So go through and write down all of the games you see …

  • Football
  • Playoffs
  • Basketball (if you have it which is unlikely)

Any other sports where you need to make an appearance once a year (soccer, volleyball, baseball, etc.)

You’re on a roll! Just two more categories to go.

Practices + more practices

Now you get to write in the stuff that you know and assign. So it’s decision making time.

Go through your calendar and write down your normally scheduled practices throughout the weeks. Pay attention to the dates you already have on the calendar like holidays and big testing weeks so you can see when practice may not be appropriate.

Now, do you have a “work week” where you practice the week before school starts? Put it down. Do you have any major events like homecoming or competitions that will require more than normal practice? Put it down. Whatever other practices you think may be possible, jot ‘em down, even if it’s just in pencil so you’re aware.

Check you out! Last category ahead.

Personal dates

If you’re anything like me, your life had to flow around the academic calendar (even if you don’t work around one most of the time). I just thought I could take vacation whenever I wanted as an adult. Ha!

It’s not so bad, honestly.

So now you can put your own plans for your life down on the calendar. Stuff like …

  • Vacations
  • Meetings
  • Appointments

Anything that you’ll have in advance or even as it pops up. Planning your calendar is kind of an ongoing process, so you’ll no doubt be adding items like this in year-round.

That’s it! You’ve done it! You’ve made it to the end of your pre-fall planning.

But I do have one last tip: don’t get too attached to your pre-planned dates.

You probably know this already, but I have this strange aversion to changing plans so it somehow always catches me off-guard when dates change. So stay in the loop, be flexible, and don’t let dates get you down anymore.

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