Kids always have that back-to-school season where they get new clothes, new books and supplies, meet their new teacher, see all their friends, and start a brand-new year. So what’s the adult version of that? How can we find that refresh we all could use, too?
Here’s my version of a Grown-Up Back-To-School Pick-Me-Up:
1 – Wardrobe Refresh
No, I did not just give you permission to go spend your whole paycheck on new clothes! But take a look at your closet (and dresser, and laundry basket, and under the bed, and coat/linen storage) and make an inventory or what you have. Keep all your clothes that fit well and you love in one section. Now, think about weeding out those pieces you never wear, don’t like, or don’t fit any more. You might be surprised at the clothing you forgot you had. You might be sad about things that don’t fit any more. You might be disappointed that the formal section of your wardrobe isn’t getting any wear. Whatever your feelings are, they’re all ok! This is your chance for an update even if that means letting go of half your clothes to donate to a local shelter. The purge will feel great and maybe free up some space for a new piece or two!
2 – Reconnecting with Friends
Some of you might already be the kind of person I dream of being—always in contact with your friends, always reaching out, staying up to date, and being involved. For the rest of us, sometimes it’s hard to keep up with everyone (especially in this crazy last year we’ve all had). Sometimes we forget how important friends and community are to our mental-health and well-being, whether that means reconnecting with old friends or seeking new ones. Reach out to those you love that you’ve not been good with regular communication. Send a postcard to your favorite aunt or mentor. Check your community boards or Facebook groups for local meet-ups. Join a yoga class and promise to meet one person and learn their name. In whatever phase you are in your friendships, take the initiative. Everyone will be glad to meet you, hear from you, and be in your world.
3 – Learn Something New
The most interesting people I know are often life-long learners. Not a big reader? Watch a documentary or join a service (like Master Class) that provides lectures from the greats in their fields. Bad at cooking or want to learn a new dish? Check out the Nadiya Hussain or Pepper Teigen. So many people have amazing cookbooks and videos dedicated to helping us achieve delicious masterpieces. Pick up a new hobby – learn how to sew, paint, woodwork, garden, dry wall, do yoga, play chess, make pottery, or play the cello. It doesn’t matter how old you are or how much of a beginner you might be. Try and find out something that clicks and move on if it doesn’t. And, if nothing else, learning gives you a greater appreciation for others and the work and talent they share with the world. Share yours, too!
4 – Help Others
I know that mentoring other small business owners is one of my favorite parts of my business. I also am actively involved with two non-profits where I serve on the Board or as an active member. Find a cause or causes you are passionate and volunteer, spread the word, or help in ways that make sense for you. The sense of connection you gain with others is truly a gift and the feeling you gain from helping others is priceless.
5 – Enjoy Life
Life is too short to deprive yourself of things that make you happy…whether dessert, a massage, or a new cute outfit! Everything is good in moderation but don’t wait for that perfect time in the future to enjoy something that will make you happy. Enjoy it now, and enjoy it regularly!
Photo by Bonnie Tsang