Remember, remember the 4th September, it’s back to school day! I hope the uniform you are wearing is ‘back to school’ smart – shirt starched and ironed, shoes polished? Our daily uniforms certainly help to get us into the zone.
This blog is an ode to back to school Septembers and how remembering our school years can help us to self-reflect and embrace learning and change in adult life.
Why not indulge yourself for a few minutes, listen to the song from Grease and take yourself back to that school uniform wearing, rebel inside. Who did you really want to be? What did you really want to do when you grew up? Have you done it? Do you still believe? Well, this blog is a gentle reminder that it’s never too late to chase your dreams, or to learn something new.
If you do one thing this month, interrupt yourself
As the nights draw in and the mornings darken, amidst falling leaves, and September showers, we are reminded by nature of the fresh start that this time of year offers. For most of us, back to school memories are long gone, though they leave a taste of September being a new year, with starched uniforms, new books, an empty blackboard and promises of learning.
Opt to study ‘Self development’ this term
We spend so much of our adult lives lurching from moment to moment, one day to the next, week to weekend, on autopilot.
It’s time to rudely interrupt your routine to remind yourself you’re alive. Reset your back to school mentality. It’s also an opportunity to challenge the thoughts, beliefs and routines that you wouldn’t usually dream of questioning to see if there’s anything lurking there in the shadows to embrace or learn from.
We aren’t meant to do the same thing, all day, every day, without interruption. It’s time to wake yourself out of your daily trance and make the most of your time here. We are visitors on this earth and our time here, short.
Smiley happy people
Many of us take public transport to work every day. The next time you do, take a good look around you. Do your travel companions look happy? How about disrupting the Monday morning mood of the ‘no smiling’ brigade. And, be sure to interrupt yourself as soon as you fall into the old routine and instead, smile the whole way. You’ll soon see how infectious a smile can be to a frown.
A smile – nature’s Botox?
Smiling has also been proven to hold back lines so what’s not to love. For those keen to maintain a needle free youthful look, think of the smile as a line eraser in this year’s pencil case.
We’re in this together
You could go really crazy and disrupt the silent, unspoken no eye contact rule with strangers. If it’s safe to do so, catch someone’s eye today, make contact and smile, not just a Monday morning corporate smile, make it a multi sensory experience; smile with your eyes too.
Remember a time when something wonderful happened
Miracles don’t only happen on the other side of the world and life’s not about sitting around and waiting to win the lottery before life can be good. Remind yourself, every day, that great things can happen to you, any time, any place, anywhere. It’s a good exercise to think back to a time when something wonderful happened to you that you didn’t expect. Did you contribute to that in any way? Maybe you had set an intention to do something, or you did a good deed that had a boomerang effect on you.
It’s important to remember, you can actually contribute to making things happen, so if you want to do or learn something new, schedule time to do it and co-create it into reality.
Inject some holiday ‘vavavoom’ into the daily grind
Look back at your last holiday, I’m pretty certain you felt energised and inspired. When we embrace difference into our daily routine, it inspires us and can encourage us to think about things differently, more creatively. Try to reenact that feeling and let it inspire you this September.
Reframe the ‘don’t talk to strangers’ message of schooldays
On vacation, did you smile and greet strangers more than you do at home? It’s easy to be open when you are away, living and breathing new experiences. Take that same feeling and blend it into your daily life. You could start by trying out the smiling on the tube suggestion above.
If you are an empath, use your energy for good. If you are one of the many gifted people who can really empathise and feel what another is feeling, then use that power for good.
On the tube I can sometimes feel fellow travellers’ moods or emotions, be it sadness, happiness, fear, or worry. I try to send uplifting energy to try to shift negative emotions.
If you’re new to this game, I wouldn’t be surprised if you are thinking it’s airy fairy new age stuff. Trust me, I’m a lawyer (I couldn’t resist using that line!) give it a go, be silent, maybe close your eyes and send love and positivity out to the world.
Blackboard and chalk
Whatever your thing, get out a new piece of chalk and use the blank canvas of an empty blackboard to teach yourself new tricks this new school year. There are no core subjects anymore, everything you do is your choice. Your adult schooling is in your hands, choose wisely and you’ll pass with flying colours.