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Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Keeping the Balance

Do you struggle with maintaining a healthy work/home life balance?  Sure, there are times in the school year requiring more of your time at home than you would like; however, are you the teacher that works at home most if not every night?  Well if I've just described you then you need to continue reading this post.  If not, then I would love to hear what you do to maintain the balance.  I'm always looking for a more efficient way to get it all done. :)

Tip #1:  Write a list with things you will get done every day in your classroom, for your family/spouse/or child, and something you will do for yourself EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.  Yes, you heard me correctly!  You are important too!  By writing down reasonable goals to get accomplished you have a higher likelihood of checking them off your list each day.  Below are a few pictures of what I use to keep the anxiety down, the since of accomplishment up, and keeping me in the mix as being important as well.  It's super easy to become a/an slave to the classroom overly dedicated teacher that comes in at dark, leaves at dark, and continues the party at the house after all commitments are taken care of.  DON'T BE THAT TEACHER!  At the end of the day, being a teacher is just a job.  It's definitely my passion, but nonetheless it's still a job.  God, family, and friends are more important and cannot be replaced.  Jobs can be replaced if needed.  When reflecting at the end of your life, you will never think "I really should have worked more".  Most people wished they had more time to be with family, friends, and visit all the awesome places the world has to offer; not "data dive", answer parent emails, and attend professional development that could have been delivered in an email.
"Keeping the Balance" has been a huge life saver.  It holds me accountable to tackle small manageable tasks each day in all parts of my life.  You can grab your free copy by clicking here or on the picture below.

Tip #2:  Set a timer and stick with it!  I set the timer on my phone for 15-30 past the required work day and that's it!  The only time you will catch me staying significantly longer is during the few peak times of year (back to school, parent conferences and/or report cards, and end of year). Obviously if there is a staff meeting it's unavoidable; however, I'm fortunate enough not to have those very often.  I've found if you work under a timer you are more efficient.  When the timer goes off, it's time to LEAVE the building.  Nothing will ever be super perfect and that's okay.  DO NOT judge yourself against any "super teachers" you may follow on Periscope, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or blog.  You have no idea what their daily life looks like or resources they may/maynot have access to.  It's no fun trying to "keep up with the Joneses'".  I believe you should do YOUR best each day you're in the classroom.  Be 100 percent present for your students and then be 100 percent present for family, friends, and yourself when you leave the classroom each day.  Also, give yourself permission to "let it go" of anything you didn't get to or wished would've done different. Reflect and then move on.  There's always tomorrow.  More times than not, only you know if things didn't go perfectly during the day.  Most people will be overly impressed with everything you do have going on in the classroom.  Focus on what's going great and not on what's not so fabulous! :)

Okie dokie!  I will leave you with those two very important time saving tips.  I hope you find them helpful.  I truly believe both tips will lead to a happier and healthier you for everything you are to so many people.  I would love to hear any timesaving tips you have; and you know you have something to share with us!  

Have a fabulous week teachers...we are on the downhill slide to Christmas break!