Monday, January 24, 2011

End of the rope

This week question for the blog cruise is:

“How do you avoid burn-out?”

Thought subject I find.

But it needs to be talked about because contrary to what probably most people think, homeschooling is not always easy. We have times when we doubt our decision while other times we feel overwhelmed with either the responsibility or the fact that you have three kids with different levels to teach.

Yes there are days where I feel totally and entirely inadequate.

The worse for me is always in February.   So what do I do…?

It simple and easy at the same time.   Take you days one at a time and reduce the quantity of work to be done.  Then you won’t see a HUUUUUUGE mountain in front of you but a little hill instead.

Okay the analogy is probably not the best but I think you get the idea.   When I know that the “blues” are hitting home, I just put the books aside and I would read to the kids or give them a free play.   We don’t do many snow days during the school part of the year, so taking a day off when mom is overwhelmed is good.   It reduce the possibility of having my tone of voice going up a notch….  Seriously though, when you feel you have too much on your shoulders, check your schedule and see if there is anything that could be removed.   Too many activities outside the house would be a good place to start.   In our family, I stick with swimming lessons and AWANA for now.   Time will tell if we will add something else eventually but I seriously doubt it.

Burn-out is important to recognize.   And it is also important to talk about it.   I hope that your spouse is supportive and is willing to listen to you if things are not going the way you would have hoped.    When I feel that I am burned-out, I need some time alone.   That’s when I let the kids watch a movie or play games.   Or I would cook something chocolaty and we would eat some together.  Another idea would be to take a bubble bath which is always a treat for me.  

I did had black days – like I call them.  Days that I wanted to throw everything and just send the kids to school.   As much as it would be easier to do, I know deep down that I would not honour God by doing so.  Why?  Simply because I know that God has called me to homeschool my kids right now.  Will it be like that forever?  I don’t know.  Maybe.  Our hopes is to homeschool in high school as well but we leave it in God’s hands for now.  After all, we still have a few years before coming to the high school years.

I find the important thing is to take one day at a time.  It is not working today?  Don’t worry.  There is always tomorrow.   Take a break.  Go walk outside.   Pray and ask God to guide you and your children.    Read the Bible.  You will be surprised how much peace will come over you during that time.   And don’t forget a bit of chocolate is always helpful!  

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