Back to School, Back to You

August. It’s like the Sunday of the summer, areweright? Desperately holding onto the last vestiges of carefree beach days and family barbecues, while in the back of our minds bracing ourselves for the reality of our “normal” routines to set back in. For so many, the end of this month means buying number 2 pencils and 3-ringed binders, and helping our kids finish their summer assignments (which were, of course, left until the last minute) – but this year we’re offering you a different take on Back to School.

Lots of children dread heading back to school. We’re all too familiar with early AM positive pep talks. But Back to School can be fun!  That’s what we’re telling ourselves, anyway.  What’s for certain is that it brings with it an even busier schedule in our already hectic lives.  So with all this talk of Back to School, we want to make sure there’s still some time for you. We took inspiration from your kids’ days and came up with ways to make this season as much about Back to School as it is about Back to You – infusing small moments of nourishing indulgence into your day.

1. The Bus Stop
After your kids are picked up at the bus stop, take a brisk walk around the neighborhood or down to your local bagel shop for a morning dose of endorphins. Maybe you can recruit another bus stop parent to join you – sip your coffees, talk about your weeks, and get to know each other. Or perhaps your car serves as the taxi to school on your way to work? Take your commute to the office to zone out and enjoy the silence, mentally preparing yourself for your day.

2. Snack Time
Your life is packed with tons to do – trust us, we get it. So much of the day is filled with errands, laundry, dishes, meetings, and deadlines. Do yourself a favor and take a beat, even just for 5 minutes, and have a snack. Nutritionists recommend eating a little something every 2-3 hours to keep your blood sugar stable. We won’t judge you if you have a secret stash of snacks that you save just for you. Not your husband. Not your co-workers. Not even your kids.

3. Social Studies
Aristotle stated that people are, by nature, social animals, and that Aristotle guy was pretty smart. Make time for person-to-person conversations, not just digital ones. Grab your favorite co-workers and take a 10-minute stroll around the industrial park to chat about anything but work. Meet a friend for lunch and some window shopping…or actual shopping. Call your mom. (We swear she didn’t tell us to write that.)

4. Recess
It’s important to unplug and get a change of scenery during your day. It’ll help calm your crowded mind and make you more productive afterwards. Take the dog (or just yourself!) for a walk at a local park, meet a friend for a yoga class, or pump some iron at the gym. Or do one of those things first and then sink into the couch and watch that guilty pleasure TV show that no one else will watch with you (or is that just us?)

5. Silent Sustained Reading aka SSR
OK, we admit it, we despised this part of the day back in grade school. Booooring. My how things change! Whether mid-afternoon before your children come home for school, or after everyone’s gone to bed, put your screens away and flip some pages instead. Take the time to read a chapter in your book club’s book of the week, the morning paper you never got around to, or even your favorite celebrity gossip magazine. Reading is relaxing and boosts intelligence, too, so they say. We’ll take it!