Too often it feels like nothing more than a new calendar in which to write down pages of non-stop activities, project deadlines, social obligations, and commitments made by someone other than yourself.
It’s time to plug into something that YOU choose—something that can renew your batteries and refresh your interest in work and life. Unlike the bobble-headed figures that nod “yes” at every touch, you DO get to declare “time out” and place yourself first.
Recharge Your Energy Idea
Experience something far afield from your teaching profession. Take a class or read a book that is NOT in your chosen subject matter or related to teaching. Select something that piques your curiosity. The notion is to look for connections or ideas that might stimulate a new way of looking at your work or your life. For instance, a former elementary teacher studied ventriloquism and discovered a new way to teach adults!
Grow as a Person
If you take an exercise class once a month, try going two more times. If you cook the same food the same way, alternate with a new cookbook or a few new ingredients. One father saw himself as totally ill-equipped to ride anything that had less than four wheels. But he took motorcycle lessons with his teenage son and his sense of personal accomplishment grew along with the bond to his son.
Practice your art or use your creative side every week. Everyone has a form of release from the “real world” that create stress. It might be hammering nails, singing in the shower, painting a picture (even if it isn’t great). It might be designing a garden or helping a friend in need. But it uses a talent you’ve got and when this talent is engaged, you burn brightly. You leave the time refreshed and mark it down as a personal “no matter what” on your day timer.
Think of the new year as a year you will take control over what energizes your batteries and renews your brain and energy field.