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6 Ways for Educators to Relax and Rejuvenate over Winter Break

6 Ways for Educators to Relax and Rejuvenate over Winter Break

Educators, you’ve made it! All of the hard work you’ve put into the first half of the school year has finally come to a conclusion, and now, it’s time for a much-deserved (seriously, you have earned this 100 times over) break. While it can be hard to turn your brain off completely when school is out, as you’ve probably heard a thousand times this year, it’s important to take some time for yourself. 

Taking a break and making time to do things that you love, and that allow you to rest, can lead to improved mental and physical health, increased productivity and effectiveness in the classroom, and better overall well-being. Here are a few ways to help you relax and rejuvenate over this winter break, so that you can come back in January ready to take on the world!

Spoil yourself by reading for fun

You likely haven’t had much time to read for fun this fall. Take some time to cozy up over winter break with a mug of hot cocoa (or a glass of wine—or tea, or beer, or iced coffee) and read a book that’s been sitting on your list for a while. Reach for something that you’ll be able to finish over break—there’s nothing worse than starting a book and not finishing it. Looking for some good book recommendations? Check out this list of book recommendations from The New Yorker.

Catch up on your favorite show

If you haven’t had much time to read, you probably haven’t had time to catch up on that show your colleagues (or students) have been recommending all year. Whether you’re into deep documentaries or bingeworthy reality shows, there’s definitely something for everyone available on the many popular streaming services. Take advantage of the cold winter weather and settle in for an evening of watching something that sparks your interest, either alone or with others. Wanting to check out a new show? Here’s a list of some of the best scripted shows from 2022 available on streaming platforms. (Or just watch The Office again, you do you!)

Spend time with loved ones

If a hectic work schedule has kept your from keeping up with friends and family, try and spend some time with them! Squeeze in some time with a friend for coffee, drinks, or dinner, and catch up on what’s been happening with those you love. If you can't meet in-person, play lunch or dinner-delivery roulette, where you order something for the other person from a local restaurant in their neighborhood, then talk though what you chose for them and why. Nothing beats spending some quality time with friends or family, and it’s a great opportunity to recharge and receive some much-needed social time.

Schedule “me time”

Take a day to completely devote to yourself over the break. Banish all distractions, and sleep in until noon, go on a hike, drive to that flea market an hour away, play video games for four hours, or start that passion project you’ve been putting off since summer. Remember, you don’t have be productive or “doing something” to relax. If watching paint dry makes you happy, then do it. The important thing is that you feel recharged afterwards. Scheduling some much-needed “me time” will help your soul rejuvenate for the second half of the school year and the new year. Taking time for yourself not only benefits you, but it can also positively benefit your students, family, and friends!

Get outside

The old saying is true, a little fresh air WILL do you some good. The combination of winter, weather, and holiday chaos can make it easy for the occasional day (or days) to slip by without leaving the house. Going outside can have a range of positive effects on both mental and physical health, even if you're just sitting outside with a book and a blanket after lunch. If you find yourself with a magic moment, where the sun is out, the weather is agreeable, and your shoes are close by, step outside for a quick walk around the block, a game catch or fetch, or even just to pour yourself a hot drink and sit out on the lawn. Simple as that.

Start planning for something fun

If you are the type of person who finds planning and organizing relaxing, start looking ahead to spring, as a treat. If you want to make a plan for your classroom, develop a new lesson, research that new classroom activity everyone’s talking about, or complete some professional development to help strengthen your craft as an educator. Or, if you'd rather un-plug from anything and everything work-related, plan a fun dinner party, a vacation, a new hobby, or take time to set goals and resolutions for yourself. Sitting down and filling in important dates in your day planner is a great way to look out for your future-self, and can help you feel prepared for the year ahead.

At Edmentum, we know how hard you work every day to make each semester a success. We want to thank you for your devotion to education and your students—it is something that truly inspires us every single day.

To celebrate all your hard work, we’re hosting a Holiday Giveaway this month. Enter by December 31 for your chance to win a $500 Target gift card. Happy holidays, educators! We hope you enjoy your winter break!

This post was originally published December 2018 and has been updated.