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January 23, 2020

August. A month of sun, friends, and the last summer memories before the start of the new school year.

August. A month of sun, friends, and the last summer memories before the start of the new school year. Whether you are transitioning into a new grade, entering senior year of high school, or starting a blank slate at college, there is no doubt that August is a month filled with excitement and nerves.

From experience, I have always considered August to be a time of preparation, emotionally and physically; for, I would familiarize myself with my class schedule and buy textbooks and materials to get ready for another year of studying. For me, August has been a month of importance, when I used to figure out my goals for the academic year and made plans to achieve and accomplish them.

With “back-to-school" season in full swing, here is my advice to those who are looking to have a successful transition to the new academic year.

First, I would recommend getting to know your schedule by understanding the types of classes you are taking and sifting through the course materials before the first day. This will help you become familiar with the workload and assignments that you may have, as well as allow you to create a plan of study for exams and projects. You can mentally prepare yourself and have no surprises on the first day.

Once you know your class schedule and workload, it will be easier to factor in extracurricular activities and other after-school commitments like sports or work. With that, I would say map out a rough outline of your weekly schedule that takes into consideration your class schedule and any other commitments you may have. Create a chart with the days of the week and times ranging from 8 AM to 5 PM. Then, block out the times when your classes and activities will be taking place. Visually, you will be able to see how much free time you have, so you can also plan meal times and self-care like exercise or a short nap.

If you pack your lunch or prefer to cook your own food, then August is a great time to search the web for meal ideas. Whether using a food website, like Food Network, or a social channel, like Pinterest, I always find that it is best to see what kinds of food you can easily make prior to heading back to school. Having a strong sense of meal prep ideas can give you a relatively good idea of what you want your meals and grocery bill to look like on a week to week basis. In the past, I have found that planning meals and prepping lunches the night before are easy ways to maintain a healthy diet throughout the busy days.

To me, August no longer means heading back-to-school, but it still is a month of constant analyzation of career and life goals and aspirations. In fact, August has now become a month that indicates the nearing end of summer, and as a result, I am able to reassess my emotional and physical lifestyle to reset for the fall season.

What are some of the ways that you prepare to have a successful transition?