Tips for Keeping Burn out at bay…

homeschool stress“Casting all your care upon Him, for He careth for you.” I Peter 5:7

I know homeschooling isn’t the easiest job I’ve ever done. Though it is very rewarding, it requires so much of me… personally, physically, emotionally, etc. Sometimes, I need to just step back and review what I’m doing and how my life is going. If I don’t… well, let’s just say I feel like I’m holding my breath!

Here are a few things that I do on a regular basis to keep myself sane, and to keep the stress at bay… (You can find more along these lines at Time4Learning)

1) Make time for the important things in your life… your family, God, your spouse. Don’t just mark off a time slot in your busy schedule, slow down, take a walk, play a game, do something completely relaxing and enjoyable and TALK with those your love! Seriously… take time to smell the roses! Don’t just rush through your day, live in every moment.

2) Don’t allow the small pesky things that will tend to keep us crazy busy… to build up. Say “no” to things that aren’t all that important… (just don’t forget to return the 40 library items that you checked out last month… or you might have a $30 bill!)

3) Adjust your educational goals if they are just not doable for the time being… (You won’t believe how freeing this can be. If you have set goals and are not able to make them, an automatic level of stress accompanies this. Formally change your goals. Write it down if you need to. You won’t believe how big of a difference it makes!) Make a no stress plan for your life.

4) Take a moment to just enjoy life… take a warm bath… sip a cup of cappuccino… light some candles…paint your toenails a wild shade of purple…take a bike ride and enjoy that sunset… do something completely relaxing! Enjoy the blessing of life!

Expectations…

When I began this journey of homeschooling, I thought I had to have everything perfect. I have that tendency anyway, but since I had been a teacher for many years… I thought my homeschool had to operate like a classroom. My expectations of our day ran along the lines of a June Cleaver crossed with the Waltons.

I thought that my days should all be perfect… where I would get up early and have quiet time, exercise, get my shower and be dressed all before the kids woke up… And when I woke them up, they would be eager and ready to learn.  HA!!!! It didn’t take me long to realize that I was crazy. After just a few months of trying it this way, I was so tired I couldn’t get out of bed in the morning. It took everything I had in me to just bark at them to get out of bed in the morning.

I also realized pretty quick that the children didn’t WANT to learn, and they didn’t always get along. So, a few months into this homeschooling endeavor… brought a realization that my expectations just were just too high. I had to reinvent a model of homeschooling that fit our family, our lifestyle, and our needs. I couldn’t be LIKE anyone else – I had to be me… and I had to homeschool in a way that reflected who WE are.

Have your expectations caused you to stress out over homeschooling? Don’t let them, homeschooling is made to meet our needs… not the other way around.