Workin’ It Wednesday: Balancing Work and Home Life

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March 8, 2017 by thebolinbunch

Happy Wednesday!  I feel like I haven’t been consistent with blogging as much as I would like lately, but things have been crazy busy!  Volleyball, cheer, and baseball season are keeping us pretty active.  Also, Emily came home the other day and said she wants to try track this spring to see if she likes it or not.  She hardly ever wants to try something new, so if she is serious, we are going to let her {even though it means EARLY Saturday track meets}!  Oh, AND we are also in the process of selling our house and looking for another one, so we haven’t had a lot of free time.

Today I am linking up with Shay and Erika for our monthly Workin’ It Wednesday post. Today’s topic is how to balance your work and home life.  Here are the rest of the topics if you want to join us next month!

workin-it-topics

I feel like balancing your work and home life is a challenging topic, especially when you work full time.  I am an 8th grade math teacher, so sometimes I find it hard to balance being mommy, wife, and teacher.  I am going to share a few things with you that makes it easier for me to keep my life balanced between work and home.

Have grace! 

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The most important thing with balancing your work and home life is to have grace with yourself.  I am the first one to give grace to others when they mess up, but I am so hard on myself when I feel like I didn’t complete everything I should’ve.  I am constantly telling myself I should’ve done something better or I shouldn’t of spent so much time with this, etc.  However, I am learning to give myself the same grace I give others.  I am human and will mess up and won’t get everything accomplished, and it’s okay!

 Get a planner!

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I am still old fashioned and like a paper planner.  I am also cheap and usually just find the cheapest planner I can get at Target or Marshall’s.  Here is my exact planner I have this year.  It is like the picture shown, only in pink.  I write everything down in my planner.  Then, each month I write a monthly calendar for all of our activities and put it on our refrigerator.  That way it is easy to look at and know what’s going on when planning ahead.  I would be lost without my planner!

Stick with a routine!

my-daily-routine

HA!  I wish that was my to-do list, but mine NEVER looks like that!  I am very routine based and I think that it helps me with being more efficient with my time.  I like to make a to-do list every day and get a lot of joy checking each thing off my list.  Having a routine also makes my girls know what is expected of them.  They know after school, they can have about 30 minutes of playing before we have to do homework.  Supper is also always on the table at 5:30-6:00 every night.  Then after supper they have more time to play, showers at 7:00, read their AR books at 7:30, and lights out at 8:00.  Do our nights always look like this?!?!? NO WAY!  But when we are home and nothing is going on, I stick to our routine like crazy.  I also follow a strict morning routine and give myself 30 minutes of quiet time to read my Bible, pray, and just sit in the silence before the crazy starts.  This really helps me have a better attitude about the day before all the gazillion questions I encounter starts.

Leave work at work and home at home.  

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This is SO hard being a teacher.  My first few years of teaching I literally brought EVERYTHING home that I didn’t get done for the day.  I quickly figured out that with teaching, I am NEVER caught up.  There is always a paper to grade, a parent to email, something to be laminated, and the list goes on and on.  I have had to learn to leave work at work and not bring it home.  There are occasions where I have to bring papers home to grade, but I try to limit those days.  My number one rule is that I won’t leave school until I have everything ready for the next day.  I make sure my desk is cleaned off, the papers are copied that I need for the next day, and everything is neat.  This helps me know that when I walk into school the next day everything is ready.  With Chris and I both teachers, it is really easy to get caught up in talking about “school” stuff at home.  We have really had to just focus our attention on the girls and our home and leave school issues at school.  It is also hard to go out into the community and not get recognized since we are both teachers.  This makes me feel sometimes that I am always “Mrs. Bolin”, but it’s something I have just learned to deal with.  I like seeing students or previous students at Wal-Mart or sporting events and they are excited to see me and tell me hi.  I knew going into teaching that would be a big part of my life.  I don’t like that it is usually always that I see my students at Wal-Mart when I run in without my make-up on and in my sweatpants.  HA!

Also, this goes the other way to have good balance between home and work.  I think we have to do a good job as teachers to leave home at home.  With Chris and I working in the SAME school district in the SAME building, it’s sometimes difficult to separate home and work because I CONSTANTLY see him.  However, teaching is my passion and I know that from 7:30-3:30 every day I am Mrs. Bolin, the teacher, not Chris’ wife.  I want kids in my classroom to receive the best possible care while they are in my class.  I owe it to them to give them their full attention and help them succeed in math and other areas of life, so I leave my personal  issues at home.  Even though my husband is right down the hall and it might be easy to talk to kids about him since he is their teacher too, I really make it a habit not to do this.  I also think that kids should never really know if you are going through a hard time.  When I was going through losing our foster kid, my dad’s declining health, my mother in law breaking her leg, I still put my teacher face on and made it through my day.  I bet most of my students never even knew I was having a rough time outside of school.

Make time for “me” time.

MeTime

Every morning I set aside 30 minutes before anyone else gets up in the house to have my quiet time with the Lord.  However, I also set aside 30 more minutes each day just for myself.  This is something that truly helps me balance everything in my life.  This is the time where I can focus on just me.  I might read a book, watch Netflix, paint my nails, take a bath, go for a walk, etc.  Whatever it is, it helps clear my head and it’s the time I look forward to every day where I don’t have to tend to someone else and I’m just “Jen”.  I’m not wife, mom, teacher, maid, NOTHING!  I usually try to find this time right after school while the girls are playing or in their rooms.  Or I will stay up a little later than anyone and enjoy the quiet while doing whatever my heart desires.

Well, there you have my Workin’ It Wednesday post.  I don’t think I have any major secrets, I try to really just use my time wisely and know my boundaries.

Hope you have a great rest of the week!  We are enjoying these few days of sunshine before possibly SNOW this weekend?!?!?!

Thanks for stopping by!

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