The start of a new school year is just around the corner and with that comes an end to long summer days, fun outings, and having more free time. Whether you can’t wait for the new school year to begin or wish summer could last forever, it’s crucial to put your self-care first as kids return to the classroom.

Whether you’re a teacher, parent, or student, here are 3 key self-care tips you should follow to have the best school year yet:

 Three Top Self-Care Tips for Back-to-School

1)  Prepare Early

You may not want to think about going back to school just yet but planning early will help you feel prepared and confident for your return. When you don’t have to worry about getting new supplies or ticking mundane tasks off your to-do list, you’ll be able to start the new year in a much more relaxed and positive state of mind.

For students and parents, this may look like getting new shoes and clothes (especially sportswear, which may not have been worn for a few months), bags, notebooks and pens, a haircut, eye exam, and anything else a student needs to feel prepared.

For parents, it’s a good idea to plan ahead for those first few weeks – do you have before- or after-school childcare needs organized? If you find getting back into the swing of things difficult, consider meal planning and meal prepping for the first week, so your lunches and dinners are prepared for the week on a Sunday before.

For teachers, you know your schedule will be all about school, especially during the first month back, so make sure any potential problems are taken care of ahead of time. For example, get your car serviced now so you know it will get you to and from work without a hitch, and consider meal prepping as suggested above. Meal delivery services are another good option for ensuring you eat healthy meals every day.

2)    Start Creating Self-Care Habits Now

School can be a lot of fun, but it can also be stressful. Try to create healthy habits now so you don’t have to think about it when you’re already tired. Depending on what helps you and/or your children relax, you may want to:

  • Stay active – dancing, yoga, walking, running, and cycling are all good options. Try to schedule it first thing in the morning or late afternoon so it will fit in around school.
  • Pick up a “no phones for an hour before bed” habit (bonus points if you read instead!)
  • Start having scheduled sit-down “quiet time” that can transition into time for doing homework or lesson planning when you get back to school.
  • Get a massage now and book massages for the first few weeks back, buy bath bombs or fun bubble baths to encourage physical relaxation.

3)    Plan fun activities for during the school year

One thing that can make back-to-school time stressful for all involved is the dread of school starting. While some students are excited to get back to see their friends, many students, parents, and teachers dread that first day back because it means all the fun of summer is over. To avoid that sense of dread and like everything will change, try to book some fun activities for weekends or after school in those early weeks.

What you choose to do depends on your personal preferences and budget, but some ideas are:

  • Book a spa day or massage
  • Plan to go to a favorite store
  • Plan a day out to a fun activity you weren’t able to go to during the summer (or one you did that you loved)
  • Plan a movie night at home
  • Book a table at a favorite restaurant for a Friday night

Looking after your mental and physical health is important for us all, but is especially important for those of us attending school and looking after students. One of the best ways to look after yourself is by getting a massage. At Valley of Vitality, we offer a wide range of different massages for teachers, parents, and students. To learn more or to book to start preparing for the school year now, click here.