My goal for this school year is to keep life as low stress as possible. I set some goals for myself, so the trick now is sticking to them. So far, the first week went well. I stuck to my morning routine of waking up at 5am so I could drink coffee and eat a little something in the peace of the morning (although I have to admit that this was hard to do on Thursday). We went away for this long Labor Day weekend, so I made sure not to bring any work home so I could really rest and enjoy our trip to Maine.
I have to say, the trip was so restful and relaxing. We had rented an apartment in Cape Elizabeth, and while we were there, I found myself thinking about how life could be simpler with less clutter and “stuff.” I could also be happier with less distraction. With that in mind, I made some decisions about separating my time and school time. I removed my school email from my personal devices so I can’t mindlessly check them, which at times has been a cause for stress. Realistically, I have a school issued chromebook that comes back and forth with me, so I should be able to do all my school related communication on that if I need to – this will just force me to be more thoughtful about when and how I engage in school communication during my time.
As August comes to an end, I am in my last week of summer vacation and thinking about going back to school. As always, summer is, for me, a time of rest and reflection, in part about my experience as a teacher. The last school year felt overall very stressful for me. I’m not sure exactly why. Was it because I was doing too much? Was it because of things happening in the world around me? Was I not making enough time for myself? Maybe it was some combination of all these things.
Every year, I make new school year resolutions, with varying degrees of success. This year, of course, will be no different, except that I am hoping this is one of those years where I succeed in the things I tell myself I will do.
Here are my plans to ensure a less stressful and happier school year:
- No committees. I even made sure I will follow through on this by sending emails indicating that I cannot fulfill these time commitments.
- Stick to as most 2 after school days per week.
- Go home on time on the other days.
- Take at least one hour per week to work on something creative – whether this be writing, drawing, or crafting. And of course, more than one hour is even better!
- Read a little at night before bed.
- Be ok with doing some school work at home if it means I have more time in my house.
- Keep the weekends as fun time.
We’ll see how successful I am! I think it will help to remember that I am a better teacher and human when I take care of myself.