Camp has been an opportunity for me to think about the old work-life-balance. Camp is exhausting, however it is not overwhelming and all consuming. I do not take camp home, camp does not appear on the weekends, and camp doesn’t call me or text me or request interviews. I work about the same amount of hours due to travel during the week as I would teaching, the difference being is when I come home I am truly at home.
Teachers put in a lot of time during the school year, and summer months. Countless of my colleagues are teaching or in class themselves, planning for the fall, or at least thinking about some of the above. Tonight I was able to arrive home, have a meal with my family, and watch my daughter chase a ball in the backyard for twenty minutes before putting her to bed (alright I was technically playing fetch with her, but that sounds lazy on my end). I want to see if I can find this balance during the school year, this feeling of productive accomplishment without overwhelming feelings that I am always behind and never ahead.
I think I need to do a few things next fall to help achieve this. I understand I will always have this balance issue as I tend to have trouble saying “no”…which has been the subject of previous posts. I reflect on my previous two years and have come up with a few things…
- Plan on my planning time. This sounds simple, but planning time can often be used for a variety of extra-curricular items. I need to simple just plan, either by myself or with a colleague. No more skipping lunch during lunch and using part of my planning time to eat. I can say this now with nothing scheduled during my lunch, but I am aware of how quickly opportunities come up (I’m already not saying “NO” just thinking about it).
- Chunk out time during the week at home. This may seem like a conflict with balance…however I want to achieve a balance where I have more time with my child. I have the luxury of her going to bed at 7am at her age…so I can fit in some work between 7-8pm. This will relieve some of the weekend pressure to focus on work.
- Create lists and finish them. I am like scrambled eggs sometimes, my desk was a reflection of the “I will get to that soon” mentality. Sedimentary rock was comparable to the stacks of piles (in chronological order) that piled up. I am great at starting something, but give me a minute and I will be moving onto something else. This blog has actually helped me commit to writing more and staying accountable to that goal.
I feel like we all have this good intention at the start of the year, and then it quickly gets ahead of us. Perhaps that will be the case, it may take me a few more years to find this balance. I understand some weekend w…
…I was almost finished this post when Abby decided sleep was not her plans at my scheduled time. I suppose striking a balance is a constant pursuit that often lands you just shy of your goals. One day!