Beating the back to school blues
January; the month where we all try to feel great, but there's very little hope.
It's always the same. We spend months, hours and minutes of our time counting down until the Christmas period and then poof! it's done and dusted. We probably could have started this blog with something a little less obvious and depressing but what's the point in hiding how we are all feeling? Work for everyone at this time of year is hard, but the fact that yours involves a whole lot of recharged and ready children just means it gets that whole lot harder. We feel you, honestly we do. So rather than beat around the bush and constantly tell you to remain positive, here's our top ten tips for beating those back to school blues... And don't worry, we promise they don't involve the 'new year, new you' malarkey.
1. Don't punish yourself
Getting back into the swing of things is already ridiculously hard so why on earth would you hide the chocolates and copious amounts of the left over fun stuff? Ease yourself back in with rewards and relaxation. Don't set yourself too many crazy resolutions and remind yourself that everyone is in the same position. The start of 2016 may seem like it's all about fruit smoothies and working out but in reality the last thing you want to be doing is 82 burpees when you come home from school. Concentrate on whatever makes you feel good about yourself and continue doing that, you can do the whole 'fit bit' thing in February when everyone else has given up. Score.
2. Use all your new stuff
Okay so the fun bit is over but there's plenty of bits and bobs to keep you feeling fresh. People sigh at socks for Christmas but in reality there's few things better than popping a new pair on in the morning. Five new mugs from students means extra coffee all day every day and January weekends were just made for gift box sets.
3. Take regular breaks
Yes, it's great to have your nose back to the grindstone and all that, but be sure to take regular breaks. Carve out an hour each day for an 'educational' Netflix show, or to a power nap when you get home from work can work wonders before tea.
4. Switch up your classroom usual
Move over trays in cupboards and blu-tack on the walls. Spend hours of marking time on Pinterest finding cool teacher hacks and lesson plans. You can find some of ours here - god we spoil you.
5. Celebrate that it's a leap year
Okay, we actually have no idea why or how but it gives you an excuse to crack the wine out and let your hair down.
6. Except that your bed time will probably be from 7pm onwards
Don't fight the feeling. Embrace all that your duvet has to offer (which is probably plenty as it means you can put off all other boring chores until another time). We don't care how much you try to say different, everyone loves an early bed time. Ignore the haters, they'll hate life tomorrow at 6am.
7. Frolic in the sales
Yeah you don't really need it but you want it and that's enough. Spend the last few pennies you have left on more junk you don't have anywhere else to put. January sales are there for a reason and you definitely need another blender you won't use.
8. Buy all of the fizz on offer (and, for the crazy health brigade, it's not as bad as you think)
With Asda, Tesco and Sainsbury's all having roll back prices on the bubbles, it's a great way to celebrate that weekend milestone. The sugar in sparkling wines also tends to be lower than plenty of other boozy beverages and a study has found that the polyphenols found in red wine can also be found in champagne . These reduce the damage free radicals can do to the body, possibly helping lower blood pressure and prevent heart problems. SO CHEERS TO THAT.
9. Make mega plans for the February half term
If this first week has well and truly beaten you just remember that another break is in sight. Looking forward to something is always a great way of keeping the spirits high so get something fantastic booked and write it in large black letters all over that 2016 calendar that you didn't really want or like any way.
10. GRUB, GRUB AND MORE GRUB
Save water (by not doing any washing up) and eat out. Pizza Express, Zizzi, Las Iguanas and ASK all have January discounts that are just waiting to be used. Okay we're all feeling the pinch but how can you say no to deals like 40% off and 241, plus who wants to cook after a hard week in the office? Pizza or a good burrito is definitely the answer to all of your problems and food comas are a great excuse to nap... Win win.
11. BE HAPPY
Don't even think about saying 'well that's easier said than done' because without being super cheesy you're in control of your own happiness. Dance in the rain, sing sweet songs and eat cake with sprinkles... Or just wake up and decide to be in a good mood, your choice.