Especially for those of us still measuring our lives in terms of the academic calendar, there is certain scent of renewal in the September air. Labor Day weekend is unanimously classified as the end of Summer, a marker that declares only four months left in the year. Billboards, commercials, and mall-lines scream “Back To School”; a scream that synonymously echoes “Back To Learning New Things” and “Turning Over a Fresh Leaf”. The feeling of productivity and rebirth accents our actions as we turn-on our brains and prepare to head back to school.
The winter months of easy-hibernation have long since passed, Summer is ending (ended) and we’re finally feeling relaxed and cleansed. Some of us are dreading returning to our routine, which we remember being monotonous and unfulfilling, while the rest of us are looking forward to reestablishing structure.
Regardless of our anticipations for the coming term, let Fall become a time to re-kindle passion, experiment extracurricularly, and take leaps in learning. The art of September Resolution making incorporates: self-reflection, dreams made of hunger and desire, and a balanced blend of reality and fantasy. As we reformulate and create goals for the coming months, I encourage us to keep the following tips in mind.
Tip #1: Reflect. Take yourself on a coffee date, ask yourself some gently reflective questions: How different am I and my lifestyle from what I envisioned in January? What would I like do differently? What has flourished?
Tip #2: Get organized. Get serious. Write it out. Writing down your September Resolutions creates a deeper connection between your thinking-self and your doing-self.
Tip #3: Use the buddy system. Tell friends; allow them to help you stay on track.
Tip #4: Establish a routine that holds you accountable. September gives us a perfectly-timed beginning; but beginnings aren’t easy, especially as we establish new habits. Habits direct and dictate our actions, but new habits take 21 days to establish. So the first three weeks as we leap into new routines are imperative for our success.
Tip #5: Enjoy the journey. Our resolutions ultimately are made so that we can reach/find/become the best version of ourselves. Enjoy the process of getting there. Don’t be too harsh on yourself; even if you fall short or lose sight, each morning is your chance to give your resolution another go.
So whether your September Resolution is to pass your chemistry course, learn sign language, run a marathon, ask that cute new girl out for Thai food, read a book of poetry, or experiment cooking tofu- with these tips, I leave you by saying:
Enjoy the final days of August, wake up September 1st with a smile on your face, thinking: live well, work hard, do more.