4 Tips that will help you make the most of your summer holidays

Photo by Matt Duncan on Unsplash

The summer holidays are the crown jewel of the school calendar.

It’s the time everyone can actually switch off, relax and not be a teacher for a few weeks.

It’s the big reset. The opportunity to come back refreshed and raring to go in September.

Here are 5 tips that will help you to make the most of your epic summer holiday!

1) What would you like to be telling your colleagues come 1st September?

Imagine it’s the first day back -


Yes, hang in with me on this one.

On the first day back, you run into colleagues you haven’t seen all holiday. Everyone is gathering in the staff room, the department office, the hall.

Some have got a lovely tan. Some are still wearing their summer holiday wardrobe that you know will be gone come tomorrow.

Everyone is sharing what they did over the summer holiday.

Three female colleagues talking
Photo by Adam Winger on Unsplash

What would you like to be telling your colleagues about your holiday?

What would you like to tell them you’ve done?

Where would you like to tell them you’ve been?

Visualising what you would have wanted to have done during your summer holiday is a great way to get an idea about what to fil your summer with.

2) What’s important to you?

When you have all the time in the world (well, 6 weeks), it’s possible to fill it doing whatever you like.

A great way to work out what this is though is to explore your values. What is important to you?

What sparks you up?

What matters to you?

family of five walking through a field
Photo by Jessica Rockowitz on Unsplash

This could be anything: family, friends, volunteering, travel, reading.

Once you have an idea of this, start creating activities or events that align with these values.

(Psst, this is also a great way to discover your non-negotiables outside of school! Check out this podcast episode to learn more!)

3) Create a bucket list

A bucket list is a fun way to keep yourself busy during your summer holiday.

It’s a list of activities you’d like to do during your summer hols.

It can be as exciting as you like (take a hot air balloon over Cappadocia) or as chilled as you like (do a coffee shop crawl with your favourite book).

What matters is that it’s all yours. You can use your values from Tip 2 to help you.

4) Avoid Comparisons

With more spare time, you may find yourself on social media more frequently.

Two letterboxes, one labelled “A”, one labelled “B”
Photo by Jason Dent on Unsplash

You may find yourself faced with the adventures and wonders of other teachers’ holidays. You may feel the flicker of jealousy course through your body.

Before that feeling consumes you, remember:

That’s them (and a refined version at that). Let them be and keep to your lane.

And even when you return to school in the new year and hear how your colleagues have spent their time off, keep the comparison-itus to a minimum.

This is your summer. Do as you wish and let others do the same.

Unless it’s going to inspire to do something in your holiday, it’s only ever going to be a stick to beat yourself with. So, put the stick down and get on with your own awesome bucket list.

With this list at your side, you’ll be facing your own summer of awesomeness. May you relish in the freedom and joy it brings! Share your holiday joy with me, I’d love to hear what you get up to!

Gemma Drinkall is an Educational Wellbeing Coach, helping middle leaders in education to switch off from teaching so that they can switch on in their lives.

Want to get in touch? Book a free, no obligation virtual coffee chat here: calendly.com/headsphere/bookacallwithgemma



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Gemma Drinkall

Gemma Drinkall


Helping teachers to create clear boundaries and love their job again.