3 Solutions to the Dark Side of Summer Vacation
Last week’s article was all about the “dark days” of a teacher’s summer vacation. Because this is something that seems to impact many teachers to some extent each year, it seems to be something to address.
So what’s a teacher to do who is feeling a little lost, uncomfortable, or overwhelmed with the open schedule ahead (but doesn’t really want to talk about it for fear that those not in the teaching profession simply wouldn’t understand)?
Because at Teaching Well we always like to move into solution, here are some things that may assist you in having a more productive and empowered summer where you spend some time creating the life of your dreams instead of being lost in the uneasiness that summertime can bring.
Do some journaling and set a summer intention
In those first few summer days (or when you realize that you’re in a funk), write down an intention or journal the direction you want your summer to move in. Do a focused free write where you write down all the things that you would love to do this summer.
From those writings, create an intention for what you want to accomplish this summer.
Start a morning routine
One of the best ways I’ve seen teachers create a summer like no other is through starting with a morning routine. This could look a little different for everyone, but it usually consists of a few activities that start you off feeling your best and set the tone for the day.
My morning routine may change slightly but I usually have the same core activities: gratitude journaling, mindfulness practice, and some kind of exercise. I may spend 5-10 minutes on each of those activities and maybe more given the day, but the most important thing is that each day I try to check each of those boxes.
Create a daily or weekly scheduling framework
Because our days and weeks look so much differently now and it seems like there is so much more time, it may feel like we have all the time in the world to do summer activities, catch up with friends, or spend time on a hobby. Often we get to the end of the summer without doing any of the extra things that we were certain we would just “fit in” at some point.
By creating a daily or weekly scheduling framework we create places in our days and weeks for those special things that we want to focus on will fit.
For example, Jordan and I always reserve Fridays as “Field Trip Fridays.” We schedule things on Fridays to do as a family like a little outing, visiting a new playground with Lucas, hiking a trail we’ve never gone to or taking a day trip somewhere. We keep a running list all year of activities that we could easily fit in during an afternoon. Each week we pick one of those things to do.
By the end of the summer, we’ve been able to experience lots of different little “family adventures” that keep us excited and make us feel like every week we’ve done something a little different to mix up our summer days with something new.
You could try to have a place in your daily schedule where you do something different, spend time working on a hobby (even if it’s only 10-15 minutes) or something that you want to accomplish each day. Remember that small steps in the direction of your goals will add up to big results.
If your goal is to live this summer like no other, you may have to do a bit of planning, but just a bit.
Hopefully these three ideas will have you finding a brighter side to those darker days of summer.
Leave a comment below or jump over to the We are Teaching Well Facebook Group to join in the conversation there.
If you want to jump right in with shedding some light on the darker side of summer, check out Teaching Well’s FREE COURSE 4 Simple Self-Care Solutions in Only Five Minutes a Day!