Organization & Management, Tips & Tricks

7 Tips for Finding Balance As A Teacher & Mom

Being a teacher and a mom is NO.EASY.TASK!!!

I mean motherhood alone is exhausting and challenging!  Now try adding another 8 hours of teaching children into the mix and it’s enough to make anyone go mad… Heck at times life has gotten so hectic that I’ve even gone to work with two different colored shoes. Can you picture that? I don’t even want to think about what my parents were thinking when they saw me   The sad part, is that I didn’t realize it until the end of the day. Sometimes I think it’s only a matter of time before I show up at work in fuzzy slippers!

 

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

So how do we juggle our crazy busy teacher life and are just as crazy mommy life? The reality is, that unless we learn to slow down and find a balance between the two,  we’re headed for a serious nervous breakdown. Trust me, I’m speaking from experience… Been there, done that, and I can tell you that it’s not pretty. I’ve found that by setting some priorities and making a few simple changes, we can lead happier and healthier lives inside the classroom as well as at home.

 

The first thing we need to do is to train ourselves to …

 

Leave Work Behind

You can begin by leaving your school work in the classroom. DO NOT BRING WORK HOME! I’m serious… That means no papers to grade, no teachers editions, no lesson plans to complete, nada!!!!!! Leave all of your teacher worries at school. That’s where they belong in the first place. Your family deserves your undivided attention. {Remember… family first } Let’s be honest, most of the time you take your teacher bag loaded with papers to grade over the weekend and you never even get to it. So why even bother bringing them home? It’ll just make you feel guilty. Leave them at work. I promise they will be waiting for you on Monday morning!

 

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

Do What Makes You Feel Good

As teachers and mothers, we’re used to taking care of everyone else but ourselves. Why is it that we always put ourselves last? We need to stop doing that! We need to love and take care of ourselves. Remember, in order for us to be able to take care of others, we need to be emotionally and physically healthy. That’s why it’s so important that we learn to schedule some “Me Time” in EVERY. SINGLE.DAY.

 

“Me Time” can be as simple as a 30 min bubble bath with absolutely no interruptions. It can also be an exercise class after school. Perhaps your guilty pleasure is an hour at night to watch your favorite Netflix episode. Whatever it is, make time for it! Set an alarm on your phone to go off at a certain time every day just to make sure you don’t get caught up in mommyhood. When your alarm goes off, leave your hubby in charge and let everyone know you’ll be back in 30 min to an hour.  One more thing… don’t feel guilty about doing something for yourself #youareworthit

 

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

Prioritize Your To Do List

I bet you have a To Do List or 2 or 3 lists running at the same time… I know what it’s like because I use to be the same way! The problem was that looking at that list every day just served as a constant reminder of everything I had to do. This just caused me more stress and anxiety. I always felt that as I crossed 2 things off, 5 more magically appeared. I swear they were like Gremlins multiplying every time I turned my back!

 

I’m not suggesting that you toss out your To Do List… With my memory, if I did that I’d never get anything done. All I’m saying is that you learn to prioritize. I like to keep a master list in a notebook dedicated for school stuff. Every morning when I arrive at my classroom, the first thing I do is select 3 goals to complete by the end of the day. I like to call them Today’s Top 3. I then record these goals on a brightly colored Post-it and stick it on my computer so that it’s in my face all day long. Those are the only goals I will focus on for the day! If I accomplish those 3 things, then I’ve had a productive day and can choose to select another Top 3.

 

This method has not only helped me prioritize my To Do’s, but also relieved some of the stress I felt every time I glanced at my ridiculously long list. Since using this system, I have found that I am much more productive. At home, I follow the same process. The only difference is that I might use one Post-it for the entire week rather than one a day. {If you’d like to download directions for printing your own Today’s Top 3, you can do that right here. And if you’d like to read some more about them, check out this post.

 

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

Set A Check Out Time

Choose a time that you will leave work every afternoon. Try to pick something as close to dismissal as possible. You already dedicate 8 hours of your day to work, the last thing you want is to spend an additional 2-3 hours after school. Especially since you’re not getting paid for them and your family is waiting for you.

 

Once you’ve chosen a time,  set an alarm on your phone. When that alarm goes off, it’s time to check out. Forget about all the things on your list you have yet to cross off. Just pick up your bag and go. Also, this means no checking emails at home or communicating with parents. Once you are gone, consider yourself in Mommy mode. Anything that needs to get done will get done tomorrow. The best piece of advice I’ve heard comes from a country music superstar …

 

Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.

-Dolly Parton

 

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

Learn To Say No

This has been one of the hardest lessons for me to learn. I’m the type of person that likes to help others. When my admin calls me and asks me to join a committee or attend a PD, I’m there. However, I’ve quickly learned that because I am always saying yes, my free time is quickly filling up with tasks for everyone else but myself. This has resulted in more of my “free” time being taken away, higher stress levels, and more anxiety! Can’t tell you how many sleepless nights I’ve had thinking about a PD I have to organize and present all while completing my regular teaching duties.

 

I have come to terms that when you are a responsible,  hardworking individual who says yes a lot, your workload automatically doubles and triples. Why? Because everyone and their mothers come to you to complete the tasks that they know others are not willing to do. That is, until the day you learn to respectively say No!

 

It took me a very long time and quite a few meltdowns to finally realize that it was in my best interest to be selective about what tasks I choose to take on. So learn to say no to your admin, learn to say no to your colleagues, learn to say no to those responsibilities that do not bring happiness to your life. As a result, this will free up some time for you to say YES to those commitments that bring you the most amount of joy! Life is too short to spend it doing other peoples work.

 

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

Organize Your Days

Children and adults strive for routine. Not only does it help us know what to expect, but from a planning perspective, it makes things so much easier to prepare for. So learn to organize your days.

 

Begin at school by deciding which tasks you’re going to complete on each day of the week. For example, on Mondays, I like to begin planning for the following weeks ELA lessons. Tuesdays are set aside for prepping for math instruction and Wednesdays are for content (science or social studies). Thursday is my copy, grading, and filing day. On this day I make sure I’ve prepared all the copies for the following week, graded some papers, and filed them away. Then on Friday, I sort all my copies for the upcoming week and make sure nothing’s missing. I also use this day to catch up on any tasks pending from the week.

 

I also keep a dinner schedule at home. On Mondays, we always eat a meal that includes chicken.  Tuesdays are Taco night… so something with ground turkey it is. Wednesdays are our meaty night so I usually create a dish with flank steak or pot roast. Thursday is reserved for leftovers (Yay, mom gets a rest!) and Friday is pizza night. Saturday is family night, so we usually go out to eat (Yay, another day off from the kitchen!) and Sundays I usually make Italian sausage or meatballs… something that’s somewhat precooked and easy to prep is what I look for. Especially since sometimes I use Sundays to pre-cook meals for the upcoming week.

 

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

Meal Plan

One of my stressors is getting home from an exhausting day at work having to figure out what to make for dinner. That’s why I’ve committed to planning my weekly meals on Saturday. Not only does this eliminate the “I get home starving and down a bag of chips before I can even think about dinner syndrome”, but I’ve found that it also encourages me to cook healthier meals. As a matter of fact, those weeks that I do NOT meal plan are just a disaster in my house.

 

There are 2 apps that I absolutely love to use while meal planning. The first one is Pinterest. My family is not the easiest one to feed. I mean my husband has a gluten allergy, my daughter does not eat seafood at all, and my son loves healthy options. So coming up with new meal ideas can be frustrating! That’s why I like to count on my trusty friend… Pinterest. He never lets me down 

 

This is where my second favorite app, Paprika comes into play. It cost about $4.99 but has been the best $5 investment I’ve made so far. With Paprika you can save any recipe you find on the web. Once you copy and paste the URL of the page where you found the recipe, Paprika automatically imports a picture of the meal, an ingredients list, and the directions. This means you no longer have to scroll through an entire post just to locate the recipe.  Oh, and you can also save your recipes into folders such as Chicken, Meat, Seafood, etc… Can you say lifesaver! After you’ve made the recipe, go back in and give it star ratings based on your families reviews. If you need to double or triple a recipe, it’s also as easy as clicking on “scale and convert”. Paprika will then automatically convert the ingredients list for you. Can I please get an AMEN?!?!

 

Do you have a few tricks of your own for juggling mommyhood and your teaching career? If so, I’d love to hear from you!!! I’m always on the look out for new tricks of the trade…

 

 

Pin the image below to be able to save this post and come back to it later…

Are you struggling with being a teacher and a mom? Do you feel like you’re always being pulled in both directions? Are you left feeling physically and emotionally drained at the end of the day? If so, than this post is for you… It shows you 7 easy time management tips that will help reduce your stress and encourage you to find a teacher work life balance.

 

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