As I begin to contemplate the next school year, and in life in general, it can sometimes seem overwhelming. I can begin to think of the slew of email I’m sure are waiting in my school email, open-house hectiness (not sure that’s a word but I’m sure you understand), IEP’s, RTI, and allllll of the various acronyms I’m sure to learn about in the year to come. However, I have to find a way to keep moving. Some people move along easily, but what if it just seems impossible? Do we “dig deeper” or take a nap? I personally believe it becomes a bit of both!
At no point in life are we supposed to become SO overwhelmed that it isn’t fun, but in education burnout is common. It becomes apparent motivation and rest must be equally shared and here are a few keys to remain motivated.
1. Set small goals. There is nothing like the feel of sliding on a pair of jeans that’ve been too tight for awhile or completing your first half marathon, but all of these come after completing a group of small tasks. Those jeans may only fit after you’ve chose to eat right for three weeks in a row, incorporated two extra workouts a week, or maybe just decided to get moving. That half marathon can only be successfully completing after various increases in your runs, learning how to fuel your body, or maybe getting in a running group. Choose one new thing to start and stay consistent for a set amount of time before you measure growth, it’s bound to happen.
2,You have to start somewhere, but the key is starting! So, you’ve spent all Summer perusing the beautiful classrooms on Pinterest and you aim to have yours as the model classroom on the hall…then you suddenly realize I have no idea how to make this happen on my budget. Often we get so overwhelmed with the overall picture, we forget there are various small things we can do in the process of completion. Pinpoint a few things you CAN accomplish from your inspiration and do them! Then go back and revisit the idea, chances are you will find a way to make it work if you’re still in love with the idea or perhaps inspiration will have struck again! Just start!
3. Phone a friend. In education and in life in general, everything is better in two’s (or more). As long as I’ve been teaching, I can remember having a “work-mom” or a core group of teachers I can communicate with. We have communicated via text, send reminders for meetings, and are simply an ear at times, but in general we are just there for each other. These aquaintances often become much more than friends, but they are also motivation when we’re feeling down which is key when feeling unmotivated. Find a buddy, phone a friend and push each other to triumph.
What keeps you motivated?
Share your keys to remain motivated in tough times!