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02Dec
2015
1
Lekki Crystal Spring Schools REFERENCE SUMMARY OF THE P.T.A MEETING FOR TERM ONE, 2015/2016 ACADEMIC SESSION, HELD ON SATURDAY 7TH NOVEMBER, 2015. -The meeting began with the due process; all protocol observed. -Introduction- Parents and teachers introduced themselves individually. – Parents and teachers were advised to be mindful of their dictions (choice of words) on the children both at home and at school, irrespective of their character trait. – Parents were admonished by the school management to always come around to settle any dispute that may have ensued during the course of serving them.  – A parent suggested that home work and assignments be limited to one, to enable the pupils and students enough time to read their books. – Robotics- Parents were informed of the schools effort at collaborating with a company named LEGO to introduce “Robotics” into the school program. Mr. Taiwo of LEGO gave a briefing on that. – J.S.S.C.E- Parents of the J.S.S three students were advised to pay up their wards registration fees as soon as possible. It was announced that their examination will come up sometime in April, 2016.  – The Schools Management also announced that school fees for each term should be paid before, on, or during the first three (3) weeks of resumption. While pupils/students using the school transportation system must make their payments (especially transportation) before resumption. (Repeated) – Excursion- The school announced that it will be going for excursion in term two. Two locations are in view, but conclusions will be communicated as soon as possible. – Punctuality- The school management announced a fine of N1,000 on each child henceforth; for parents who pick their ward(s) after 3:30 pm.   For more information, log on to our website @  www.lekkicrystalschools.com  Join us on Facebook @Lekki Crystal   Follow us on twitter @LekkiCrystal Thank you. Signed- School Management

Lekki Crystal Spring Schools REFERENCE SUMMARY OF THE P.T.A MEETING FOR TERM ONE, 2015/2016 ACADEMIC SESSION, HELD ON SATURDAY 7TH NOVEMBER, 2015. -The meeting began with the due process; all protocol observed. -Introduction- Parents and teachers introduced themselves individually. – Parents and teachers were advised to be mindful of their dictions (choice of words) on the children both at home and at school, irrespective of their character trait. – Parents were admonished by the school management to always come around to settle any dispute that may have ensued during the course of serving them. – A parent suggested that home work and assignments be limited to one, to enable the pupils and students enough time to read their books. – Robotics- Parents were informed of the schools effort at collaborating with a company named LEGO to introduce “Robotics” into the school program. Mr. Taiwo of LEGO gave a briefing on that. – J.S.S.C.E- Parents of the J.S.S three students were advised to pay up their wards registration fees as soon as possible. It was announced that their examination will come up sometime in April, 2016. – The Schools Management also announced that school fees for each term should be paid before, on, or during the first three (3) weeks of resumption. While pupils/students using the school transportation system must make their payments (especially transportation) before resumption. (Repeated) – Excursion- The school announced that it will be going for excursion in term two. Two locations are in view, but conclusions will be communicated as soon as possible. – Punctuality- The school management announced a fine of N1,000 on each child henceforth; for parents who pick their ward(s) after 3:30 pm. For more information, log on to our website @ www.lekkicrystalschools.com Join us on Facebook @Lekki Crystal Follow us on twitter @LekkiCrystal Thank you. Signed- School Management

24Nov
2015
1
7 Secrets to Raising a Happy Child Give your child the skills to rebound from setbacks and pave the way to success. By Marguerite Lamb from American Baby *What Makes a Child Happy? We all want the same things for our kids. We want them to grow up to love and be loved, to follow their dreams, to find success. Mostly, though, we want them to be happy. But just how much control do we have over our children’s happiness? My son, Jake, now 7, has been a rather somber child since birth, while my 5-year-old, Sophie, is perennially sunny. Jake wakes up grumpy. Always has. Sophie, on the other hand, greets every day with a smile. Evident from infancy, their temperaments come, at least in part, from their genes. But that doesn’t mean their ultimate happiness is predetermined, assures Bob Murray, PhD, author of Raising an Optimistic Child: A Proven Plan for Depression-Proofing Young Children — for Life (McGraw-Hill). “There may be a genetic propensity for depression, but our genes are malleable and can be switched on or off depending on the environment,” he says. “The research clearly shows that happy, optimistic children are the product of happy, optimistic homes, regardless of genetic makeup.” What can you do to create a home where your child’s happiness will flourish? Read on for seven strategies that will strengthen your child’s capacity to experience joy. 1-Foster Connections The surest way to promote your child’s lifelong emotional well-being is to help him feel connected — to you, other family members, friends, neighbors, daycare providers, even to pets. “A connected childhood is the key to happiness,” says Edward Hallowell, MD, child psychiatrist and author of The Childhood Roots of Adult Happiness (Ballantine Books). Dr. Hallowell points as evidence to the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, involving some 90,000 teens, in which “connectedness” — a feeling of being loved, understood, wanted, acknowledged — emerged as by far the biggest protector against emotional distress, suicidal thoughts, and risky behaviors including smoking, drinking, and using drugs. Fortunately, we can cement our child’s primary and most crucial connection — to us — simply by offering what Dr. Hallowell calls the crazy love that never quits. “It sounds hokey, and it’s often dismissed as a given,” he says, “but if a child has just one person who loves him unconditionally, that’s the closest thing he’ll ever get to an inoculation against misery.” It’s not enough, however, simply to possess that deep love; your child must feel it, too, Dr. Hallowell says. Hold your baby as much as possible; respond with empathy to his cries; read aloud to him; eat, snuggle, and laugh together. Meanwhile, provide chances for him to form loving connections with others as well, advises sociologist Christine Carter, PhD, executive director of the University of California at Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, an organization devoted to the scientific understanding of happiness. “We know from 50 years of research that social connections are an incredibly important, if not the most important, contributor to happiness,” Carter says. “And it’s not just the quality, but also the quantity of the bonds: the more connections your child makes, the better.” 2-Don’t Try to Make Your Child Happy It sounds counterintuitive, but the best thing you can do for your child’s long-term happiness may be to stop trying to keep her happy in the short-term. “If we put our kids in a bubble and grant them their every wish and desire, that is what they grow to expect, but the real world doesn’t work that way,” says Bonnie Harris, founder of Core Parenting, in Peterborough, New Hampshire, and author of When Your Kids Push Your Buttons: And What You Can Do About It (Grand Central Publishing). To keep from overcoddling, recognize that you are not responsible for your child’s happiness, Harris urges. Parents who feel responsible for their kids’ emotions have great difficulty allowing them to experience anger, sadness, or frustration. We swoop in immediately to give them whatever we think will bring a smile or to solve whatever is causing them distress. Unfortunately, Harris warns, children who never learn to deal with negative emotions are in danger of being crushed by them as adolescents and adults. Once you accept that you can’t make your child feel happiness (or any other emotion for that matter), you’ll be less inclined to try to “fix” her feelings — and more likely to step back and allow her to develop the coping skills and resilience she’ll need to bounce back from life’s inevitable setbacks. 3-Nurture Your Happiness While we can’t control our children’s happiness, we are responsible for our own. And because children absorb everything from us, our moods matter. Happy parents are likely to have happy kids, while children of depressed parents suffer twice the average rate of depression, Murray observes. Consequently, one of the best things you can do for your child’s emotional well-being is to attend to yours: carve out time for rest, relaxation, and, perhaps most important, romance. Nurture your relationship with your spouse. “If parents have a really good, committed relationship,” Murray says, “the child’s happiness often naturally follows.” 4-Praise the Right Stuff Not surprisingly, studies consistently link self-esteem and happiness. Our children can’t have one without the other. It’s something we know intuitively, and it turns many of us into overzealous cheerleaders. Our child scribbles and we declare him a Picasso, scores a goal and he’s the next Beckham, adds 1 and 2 and he’s ready for Mensa. But this sort of “achievement praise” can backfire. “The danger, if this is the only kind of praise a child hears, is that he’ll think he needs to achieve to win your approval,” Murray explains. “He’ll become afraid that if he doesn’t succeed, he’ll fall off the pedestal and his parents won’t love him anymore.” Praising specific traits — intelligence, prettiness, athleticism — can also undermine children’s confidence later, if they grow up believing they’re valued for something that’s out of their control and potentially fleeting. “If you praise your child primarily for being pretty, for example, what happens when she grows old and loses that beauty?” Murray asks. “How many facials will it take for her to feel worthwhile?” Interestingly, Murray adds, research shows that kids who are praised mainly for being bright become intellectually timid, fearing that they will be seen as less smart — and less valuable — if they fail. The antidote, however, is not to withhold praise but rather to redirect it, Murray says. “Praise the effort rather than the result,” he advises. “Praise the creativity, the hard work, the persistence, that goes into achieving, more than the achievement itself.” The goal, Carter agrees, is to foster in your child a “growth mind-set,” or the belief that people achieve through hard work and practice, more than through innate talent. “Kids who are labeled as having innate talent feel they need to prove themselves again and again,” Carter observes. “Whereas studies show kids with a growth mind-set do better and enjoy their activities more because they aren’t worried what people will think of them if they fail.” Fortunately, Carter says, research has shown it’s possible to instill a growth mind-set in children with one simple line of praise: you did really well on X; you must have worked really hard. “So we’re not saying don’t praise,” Carter stresses. “Just focus on something within your child’s control.” 5-Allow for Success and Failure Of course, if you really want to bolster your child’s self-esteem, focus less on compliments and more on providing her with ample opportunities to learn new skills. Mastery, not praise, is the real self-esteem builder, Dr. Hallowell says. Fortunately, when it comes to the under-4 crowd, nearly everything they do is a chance to attain mastery — because it’s all new to them: learning to crawl, walk, feed and dress themselves, use the potty, and ride a tricycle. Our challenge is to stand back and let our children do for themselves what they’re capable of. “The great mistake good parents make is doing too much for their children,” Dr. Hallowell says. While it can be difficult to watch our kids struggle, they’ll never know the thrill of mastery unless we allow them to risk failure. Few skills are perfected on a first try. It’s through practice that children achieve mastery. And through repeated experiences of mastery, they develop the can-do attitude that lets them approach future challenges with the zest and optimism that are central to a happy life. 6-Give Real Responsibilities “Happiness depends largely on the feeling that what we do matters and is valued by others,” Murray observes. “Without that feeling, we fear we might be excluded from the group. And research shows that what human beings fear more than anything is exclusion.” In other words, people have an innate need to be needed. So the more you can convey to your child that he is making a unique contribution to the family, from an early age, the greater his sense of self-worth and his ultimate happiness. Kids as young as 3 can play meaningful family roles, Murray says, whether it’s refilling the cat’s dry-food bowl or setting out the napkins at dinnertime. If possible, assign a role that plays to your child’s strengths. For example, if your little one loves to organize things, give him the job of sorting the forks and spoons. If he’s particularly nurturing, perhaps his role could be entertaining his baby sister while you get dinner on the table. So long as you acknowledge that he’s making a contribution to the family, it will heighten your child’s sense of connection and confidence, two prerequisites for lasting happiness. 7-Practice Habitual Gratitude Finally, happiness studies consistently link feelings of gratitude to emotional well-being.For a child, keeping a journal may be unrealistic. But one way to foster gratitude in children is to ask that each member of the family take time daily — before or during a meal, for example — to name aloud something he or she is thankful for, Carter suggests. The important thing is to make it a regular ritual. “This is one habit that will foster all kinds of positive emotions,” she assures, “and it really can lead to lasting happiness.” Copyright © 2008. Used with permission from the May 2008 issue of American Baby magazine.

7 Secrets to Raising a Happy Child Give your child the skills to rebound from setbacks and pave the way to success. By Marguerite Lamb from American Baby *What Makes a Child Happy? We all want the same things for our kids. We want them to grow up to love and be loved, to follow their dreams, to find success. Mostly, though, we want them to be happy. But just how much control do we have over our children’s happiness? My son, Jake, now 7, has been a rather somber child since birth, while my 5-year-old, Sophie, is perennially sunny. Jake wakes up grumpy. Always has. Sophie, on the other hand, greets every day with a smile. Evident from infancy, their temperaments come, at least in part, from their genes. But that doesn’t mean their ultimate happiness is predetermined, assures Bob Murray, PhD, author of Raising an Optimistic Child: A Proven Plan for Depression-Proofing Young Children — for Life (McGraw-Hill). “There may be a genetic propensity for depression, but our genes are malleable and can be switched on or off depending on the environment,” he says. “The research clearly shows that happy, optimistic children are the product of happy, optimistic homes, regardless of genetic makeup.” What can you do to create a home where your child’s happiness will flourish? Read on for seven strategies that will strengthen your child’s capacity to experience joy. 1-Foster Connections The surest way to promote your child’s lifelong emotional well-being is to help him feel connected — to you, other family members, friends, neighbors, daycare providers, even to pets. “A connected childhood is the key to happiness,” says Edward Hallowell, MD, child psychiatrist and author of The Childhood Roots of Adult Happiness (Ballantine Books). Dr. Hallowell points as evidence to the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, involving some 90,000 teens, in which “connectedness” — a feeling of being loved, understood, wanted, acknowledged — emerged as by far the biggest protector against emotional distress, suicidal thoughts, and risky behaviors including smoking, drinking, and using drugs. Fortunately, we can cement our child’s primary and most crucial connection — to us — simply by offering what Dr. Hallowell calls the crazy love that never quits. “It sounds hokey, and it’s often dismissed as a given,” he says, “but if a child has just one person who loves him unconditionally, that’s the closest thing he’ll ever get to an inoculation against misery.” It’s not enough, however, simply to possess that deep love; your child must feel it, too, Dr. Hallowell says. Hold your baby as much as possible; respond with empathy to his cries; read aloud to him; eat, snuggle, and laugh together. Meanwhile, provide chances for him to form loving connections with others as well, advises sociologist Christine Carter, PhD, executive director of the University of California at Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, an organization devoted to the scientific understanding of happiness. “We know from 50 years of research that social connections are an incredibly important, if not the most important, contributor to happiness,” Carter says. “And it’s not just the quality, but also the quantity of the bonds: the more connections your child makes, the better.” 2-Don’t Try to Make Your Child Happy It sounds counterintuitive, but the best thing you can do for your child’s long-term happiness may be to stop trying to keep her happy in the short-term. “If we put our kids in a bubble and grant them their every wish and desire, that is what they grow to expect, but the real world doesn’t work that way,” says Bonnie Harris, founder of Core Parenting, in Peterborough, New Hampshire, and author of When Your Kids Push Your Buttons: And What You Can Do About It (Grand Central Publishing). To keep from overcoddling, recognize that you are not responsible for your child’s happiness, Harris urges. Parents who feel responsible for their kids’ emotions have great difficulty allowing them to experience anger, sadness, or frustration. We swoop in immediately to give them whatever we think will bring a smile or to solve whatever is causing them distress. Unfortunately, Harris warns, children who never learn to deal with negative emotions are in danger of being crushed by them as adolescents and adults. Once you accept that you can’t make your child feel happiness (or any other emotion for that matter), you’ll be less inclined to try to “fix” her feelings — and more likely to step back and allow her to develop the coping skills and resilience she’ll need to bounce back from life’s inevitable setbacks. 3-Nurture Your Happiness While we can’t control our children’s happiness, we are responsible for our own. And because children absorb everything from us, our moods matter. Happy parents are likely to have happy kids, while children of depressed parents suffer twice the average rate of depression, Murray observes. Consequently, one of the best things you can do for your child’s emotional well-being is to attend to yours: carve out time for rest, relaxation, and, perhaps most important, romance. Nurture your relationship with your spouse. “If parents have a really good, committed relationship,” Murray says, “the child’s happiness often naturally follows.” 4-Praise the Right Stuff Not surprisingly, studies consistently link self-esteem and happiness. Our children can’t have one without the other. It’s something we know intuitively, and it turns many of us into overzealous cheerleaders. Our child scribbles and we declare him a Picasso, scores a goal and he’s the next Beckham, adds 1 and 2 and he’s ready for Mensa. But this sort of “achievement praise” can backfire. “The danger, if this is the only kind of praise a child hears, is that he’ll think he needs to achieve to win your approval,” Murray explains. “He’ll become afraid that if he doesn’t succeed, he’ll fall off the pedestal and his parents won’t love him anymore.” Praising specific traits — intelligence, prettiness, athleticism — can also undermine children’s confidence later, if they grow up believing they’re valued for something that’s out of their control and potentially fleeting. “If you praise your child primarily for being pretty, for example, what happens when she grows old and loses that beauty?” Murray asks. “How many facials will it take for her to feel worthwhile?” Interestingly, Murray adds, research shows that kids who are praised mainly for being bright become intellectually timid, fearing that they will be seen as less smart — and less valuable — if they fail. The antidote, however, is not to withhold praise but rather to redirect it, Murray says. “Praise the effort rather than the result,” he advises. “Praise the creativity, the hard work, the persistence, that goes into achieving, more than the achievement itself.” The goal, Carter agrees, is to foster in your child a “growth mind-set,” or the belief that people achieve through hard work and practice, more than through innate talent. “Kids who are labeled as having innate talent feel they need to prove themselves again and again,” Carter observes. “Whereas studies show kids with a growth mind-set do better and enjoy their activities more because they aren’t worried what people will think of them if they fail.” Fortunately, Carter says, research has shown it’s possible to instill a growth mind-set in children with one simple line of praise: you did really well on X; you must have worked really hard. “So we’re not saying don’t praise,” Carter stresses. “Just focus on something within your child’s control.” 5-Allow for Success and Failure Of course, if you really want to bolster your child’s self-esteem, focus less on compliments and more on providing her with ample opportunities to learn new skills. Mastery, not praise, is the real self-esteem builder, Dr. Hallowell says. Fortunately, when it comes to the under-4 crowd, nearly everything they do is a chance to attain mastery — because it’s all new to them: learning to crawl, walk, feed and dress themselves, use the potty, and ride a tricycle. Our challenge is to stand back and let our children do for themselves what they’re capable of. “The great mistake good parents make is doing too much for their children,” Dr. Hallowell says. While it can be difficult to watch our kids struggle, they’ll never know the thrill of mastery unless we allow them to risk failure. Few skills are perfected on a first try. It’s through practice that children achieve mastery. And through repeated experiences of mastery, they develop the can-do attitude that lets them approach future challenges with the zest and optimism that are central to a happy life. 6-Give Real Responsibilities “Happiness depends largely on the feeling that what we do matters and is valued by others,” Murray observes. “Without that feeling, we fear we might be excluded from the group. And research shows that what human beings fear more than anything is exclusion.” In other words, people have an innate need to be needed. So the more you can convey to your child that he is making a unique contribution to the family, from an early age, the greater his sense of self-worth and his ultimate happiness. Kids as young as 3 can play meaningful family roles, Murray says, whether it’s refilling the cat’s dry-food bowl or setting out the napkins at dinnertime. If possible, assign a role that plays to your child’s strengths. For example, if your little one loves to organize things, give him the job of sorting the forks and spoons. If he’s particularly nurturing, perhaps his role could be entertaining his baby sister while you get dinner on the table. So long as you acknowledge that he’s making a contribution to the family, it will heighten your child’s sense of connection and confidence, two prerequisites for lasting happiness. 7-Practice Habitual Gratitude Finally, happiness studies consistently link feelings of gratitude to emotional well-being.For a child, keeping a journal may be unrealistic. But one way to foster gratitude in children is to ask that each member of the family take time daily — before or during a meal, for example — to name aloud something he or she is thankful for, Carter suggests. The important thing is to make it a regular ritual. “This is one habit that will foster all kinds of positive emotions,” she assures, “and it really can lead to lasting happiness.” Copyright © 2008. Used with permission from the May 2008 issue of American Baby magazine.

24Nov
2015
1
Top 10 tips to make the most of your weekends Make the best use of your time off! Your weekends are precious — you’ll want to make the most of them. You’ve probably worked all week with one target in mind — getting to the weekend and then doing something useful with it! Yet often when you actually reach the weekend, it tends to fizzle out and not quite live up to your expectations. The following top 10 tips aim to help you make the most of your weekends — so that by the time Monday comes, you’ll feel refreshed, on top of things, and fulfilled about what you’ve done in your time off. Weekend tip 1: Make plans Decide during the week exactly what it is you’re aiming to do at the weekend. Jot everything down so you know what your weekend plan is well in advance. This doesn’t mean you can’t allow for a bit of spontaneity here and there, of course, but in the main you should know what it is you want to get out of your weekend. If you don’t have any plans, you will very often end up doing nothing! Weekend tip 2: Meet up with your friends We nearly always have the best time with our friends, yet sometimes we put off making that phone call to arrange something because we can’t be bothered. If you make the effort, though, you know it will be worthwhile! And if you’re short of ideas of what to do with your weekend, it’s likely that once you all get together you will be able to come up with a plan. Weekend tip 3: Get outdoors Admittedly the weather is not always on our side — but if you’re prepared for whatever the elements might throw at you, then you shouldn’t be too concerned about getting out into the fresh air. Simply get outdoors and go for a walk, run, hike, cycle — or anything else you can think of! It’s amazing how getting a bit of exercise and fresh air will leave you energized — and if you share the experience with others, then that’s an added bonus. Weekend tip 4: Avoid drinking too much alcohol There’s no denying that most of us enjoy a drink, and the temptation when we reach Friday night is often to have a few too many. However, the next day you’ll probably feel a bit off-color and spend most of the day in bed or nursing the hangover — and so the day will pass without you having done anything. Our advice is therefore to take it easy when you’re drinking. A little alcohol can help you to relax at the weekend — but don’t let it rule your time off! Weekend tip 5: Allot some ‘you’ time Rushing around and filling your time with all sorts of activities can be great fun, but will also be tiring. You may even feel at some point as though you’ve overdone it — and being constantly surrounded by activity and people can certainly take its toll on you, both mentally and physically. So, try to set some time aside for yourself, when you can indulge yourself in a book, listen to some music, or just chill out. Make the best use of your time off! Weekend tip 6: Allow yourself some catch-up time Weekends are about having fun, but can also be a good time to catch up on those things that have been niggling away at you for some time. Make use of your weekend by fitting some of these activities in — whether they are DIY jobs that you’ve been putting off, or financial issues that you need to sort out. Actually getting down to it will make you feel a lot better, as you’ll feel as though you’ve achieved something during your weekend. Weekend tip 7: Put some things off There are some things that can be done at any time — not just at the weekend. If you arrange your time in the week sufficiently well — for example by doing some small jobs during your lunchtimes — then that should leave plenty of time at the weekend to do the things you really want to do. Doing a bit of a job every day or night of the week can prevent you having to do it during your precious weekend! Weekend tip 8: Avoid routine Our lives sometimes get in a rut, and we do the same old things week-in, week-out. Often this is because our jobs force us into these routines — but at the weekend, you will have time to break them. Jolt yourself into a whole new weekend frame of mind by trying something different, taking up invitations, and avoiding the thoughts of what you usually do on a Saturday or Sunday. Weekend tip 9: Find a new hobby Getting a new hobby can help you fulfill some of the other tips mentioned here. If you join a club, it’s likely you’ll have set plans most weekends and will have new friends to meet — plus your activity could well be outdoors. It will also help to break up a dull routine, and will give you something to look forward to. Alternatively, your new hobby could be something that you enjoy doing by yourself, and could be the ‘time out’ that you need in your weekend. Weekend tip 10: Get sporty! Admittedly, not everyone will be able to carry their legs around a football field for 90 minutes on a Sunday morning, but if you can do a little physical activity, you will feel great and get good health benefits. Alternatively, you could get outdoors and watch some sport first-hand, rather than watching it on TV. The weekend is when most sporting activity takes place — so why not get out of the house and see a game of football, rugby, basketball or another sport? It may even inspire you to start playing the sport yourself! #realbuzz.com  #strivingforexcellence

Top 10 tips to make the most of your weekends Make the best use of your time off! Your weekends are precious — you’ll want to make the most of them. You’ve probably worked all week with one target in mind — getting to the weekend and then doing something useful with it! Yet often when you actually reach the weekend, it tends to fizzle out and not quite live up to your expectations. The following top 10 tips aim to help you make the most of your weekends — so that by the time Monday comes, you’ll feel refreshed, on top of things, and fulfilled about what you’ve done in your time off. Weekend tip 1: Make plans Decide during the week exactly what it is you’re aiming to do at the weekend. Jot everything down so you know what your weekend plan is well in advance. This doesn’t mean you can’t allow for a bit of spontaneity here and there, of course, but in the main you should know what it is you want to get out of your weekend. If you don’t have any plans, you will very often end up doing nothing! Weekend tip 2: Meet up with your friends We nearly always have the best time with our friends, yet sometimes we put off making that phone call to arrange something because we can’t be bothered. If you make the effort, though, you know it will be worthwhile! And if you’re short of ideas of what to do with your weekend, it’s likely that once you all get together you will be able to come up with a plan. Weekend tip 3: Get outdoors Admittedly the weather is not always on our side — but if you’re prepared for whatever the elements might throw at you, then you shouldn’t be too concerned about getting out into the fresh air. Simply get outdoors and go for a walk, run, hike, cycle — or anything else you can think of! It’s amazing how getting a bit of exercise and fresh air will leave you energized — and if you share the experience with others, then that’s an added bonus. Weekend tip 4: Avoid drinking too much alcohol There’s no denying that most of us enjoy a drink, and the temptation when we reach Friday night is often to have a few too many. However, the next day you’ll probably feel a bit off-color and spend most of the day in bed or nursing the hangover — and so the day will pass without you having done anything. Our advice is therefore to take it easy when you’re drinking. A little alcohol can help you to relax at the weekend — but don’t let it rule your time off! Weekend tip 5: Allot some ‘you’ time Rushing around and filling your time with all sorts of activities can be great fun, but will also be tiring. You may even feel at some point as though you’ve overdone it — and being constantly surrounded by activity and people can certainly take its toll on you, both mentally and physically. So, try to set some time aside for yourself, when you can indulge yourself in a book, listen to some music, or just chill out. Make the best use of your time off! Weekend tip 6: Allow yourself some catch-up time Weekends are about having fun, but can also be a good time to catch up on those things that have been niggling away at you for some time. Make use of your weekend by fitting some of these activities in — whether they are DIY jobs that you’ve been putting off, or financial issues that you need to sort out. Actually getting down to it will make you feel a lot better, as you’ll feel as though you’ve achieved something during your weekend. Weekend tip 7: Put some things off There are some things that can be done at any time — not just at the weekend. If you arrange your time in the week sufficiently well — for example by doing some small jobs during your lunchtimes — then that should leave plenty of time at the weekend to do the things you really want to do. Doing a bit of a job every day or night of the week can prevent you having to do it during your precious weekend! Weekend tip 8: Avoid routine Our lives sometimes get in a rut, and we do the same old things week-in, week-out. Often this is because our jobs force us into these routines — but at the weekend, you will have time to break them. Jolt yourself into a whole new weekend frame of mind by trying something different, taking up invitations, and avoiding the thoughts of what you usually do on a Saturday or Sunday. Weekend tip 9: Find a new hobby Getting a new hobby can help you fulfill some of the other tips mentioned here. If you join a club, it’s likely you’ll have set plans most weekends and will have new friends to meet — plus your activity could well be outdoors. It will also help to break up a dull routine, and will give you something to look forward to. Alternatively, your new hobby could be something that you enjoy doing by yourself, and could be the ‘time out’ that you need in your weekend. Weekend tip 10: Get sporty! Admittedly, not everyone will be able to carry their legs around a football field for 90 minutes on a Sunday morning, but if you can do a little physical activity, you will feel great and get good health benefits. Alternatively, you could get outdoors and watch some sport first-hand, rather than watching it on TV. The weekend is when most sporting activity takes place — so why not get out of the house and see a game of football, rugby, basketball or another sport? It may even inspire you to start playing the sport yourself! #realbuzz.com #strivingforexcellence