Back to School: How to Beat ‘The Dread’

commuters on a bus at floor level

Back to School Blues

If there’s one thing to be said about school holidays, it’s the fact that a lot of social norms go out of the window. We’ll indulge in unusual amounts of alcohol because it’s not a ‘school night’ (or is that just me?), survive on snacks long after it’s healthy to do so and despite our best efforts, losing track of days is inevitable. The carefree nature of these topsy-turvy weeks can often leave us feeling a sense of dread when we realise it can’t last forever. Here are some handy tips to help.

Schedule ‘Working’ Time

In an ideal world, teachers wouldn’t use their holiday to plan or mark but getting ahead of yourself helps and nothing flares up feelings of stress and anxiety quite like procrastination coupled with time running out. If you know there’s stuff you want to do before you’re back to school, chip away at it slowly. Give yourself an hour here and there (and be strict with it!) to get a little bit of a job done.

Be Ready in Advance

If you’re anything like me, knowing that the menial stuff is done is amazing for setting your mind at rest. For me, knowing my bag is ready near the door, my shoes are looking half-decent and that I have a pair of trousers, a shirt and a tie ready means that I won’t be fumbling around at 6:30 wondering why I hadn’t bothered to iron during one of the days where I was sitting with my feet up and binge-watching Netflix. Whatever it is you’re bad at having ready in advance, get it done.

Get Back into a Sleep Schedule

Gone soon will be those heady days of waking up at 9, 10 or, if you’ve been particularly naughty, 11am. As wonderful as sleeping in might feel and as necessary as it might be at the beginning of the holiday, slowly working yourself into a sleeping pattern more reminiscent of a functioning adult instead of a house cat is probably a good idea. Shave an hour/half an hour off your bedtime every evening and do the same to your wake-up time.

Be Active and Productive

I’m not telling you that you ought to get to the gym, start your park-running routine or finally use that yoga mat you got for Christmas. I simply mean that you ought to use your time to ‘do things’ that doesn’t necessarily mean watching TV, snacking or going a tad stir-crazy indoors. This could be anything. Visiting friends and family, going on a walk, doing some DIY, giving the house a deep clean… whatever! I find this helps me whenever I feel like I’m ‘wasting’ the last of my holiday: being productive and getting stuff done so I can account for my time and feel less guilty about watching a full season of Orange is the New Black.

Enjoy the last of your holidays and remember, you’ve got this!

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