Back to school

Every September, the new school year brings with it a rush of renewed energy and the sense of starting fresh. Leaves begin to fall, days are warm and chilly evenings hint at the winter around the corner. When we were kids, new pencils and a new backpack were the signs that going back to school was upon us. Football season descends, and with it come the clack-clack cadences of drum corps, sweet treats like candy apples and the smell of campfire in the air.

Even if it’s been a decade or more since you were formerly enrolled, you can still take advantage of the energetic upswing of the back to school season to make a fresh start in your life. After all, learning never ends – and as a grown-up, you get to choose the subjects you study, the teachers and the people in your class! Get ready to go back to school – it’s going to be an easy A!

1. Get organized. Now is the perfect time to stock up on school and office supplies. Buy the organizational elements you need to take control of your projects: calendars, planners and filing cabinets. Make things fun with bright colors and be sure to buy high-quality pens, markers and pencils that will make it fun to work.

2. Freshen Your Style. Back to school often means a shopping trip for a cute outfit to wear the first day back. How long has it been since you’ve freshened your style? It’s easier to start anew when you look different – or at least better! Schedule that salon visit or shopping trip that you’ve been denying, and treat yourself to a new hairstyle or outfit.

3. Call Your Friends. Meeting back up with friends is always a highlight of the new school year. If the summer has been too hot, long or busy for you to hang out with your friends, make sure to plan a lunch together so that everyone can catch up. Wear your new outfit!

4. Decide Your Schedule. Setting a schedule was complicated in high school, much less today. Think about how you have spent your time in the last eight months. Are you spending time on extra-curricular activities that you thought you would enjoy, but should probably let go of now? Have you been playing hooky from work, or spending too many evening hours on homework? Ponder what you would like to see change in the remainder of the year.

5. Set Fall Goals. Students have their goals set for them to the letter: A-F. However as adults we must set goals ourselves and hold ourselves accountable – which is much, much more difficult. What top three things would you like to achieve by 2014? Write down your three top goals, making them definite (I want to lose ten pounds) instead of vague (I want to lose weight).

6. Don’t Forget Recess. As a kid, your favorite subject was probably recess! But when was the last time you played as an adult? Being entertained is not the same as play; be sure that you aren’t cheating your inner child out of playtime. Schedule a silly break to laugh, color, sing, dance, play with the dog or roll in the leaves every single day.

Image: bunches and bits