Updated: Dec 28, 2021
Data analytics, classroom and project management, lesson design and facilitation, and the list goes on. Teaching should undoubtedly be a six-figure profession. Throwing a pandemic into the mix and watching the transformative work of teachers further stamps this point. Nevertheless, it's winter break. I am writing to share how I think you amazing and fearless agents of change should spend this time.
Y'all literally should not be doing anything work-related. Not a conversion with a colleague, lesson plan, email, should be entertained during this period. If anything must be done, I'd push you to wait at least until a day or two until break is over. Teaching has always been a both rewarding and stressful career, but this year has hit different. Spend this time doing things that you enjoy.
This is the time! Reflect on where you are now AND where you'd like to go. Consider the following:
Where do you see yourself 3-5 years from now?
Where do you want to live?
Will you still be teaching? If not, what professions are aligned to your niches?
What professions interest you, but are not aligned with your niches? You can perhaps seek coursework, experiences, and fellowships to gain knowledge in these fields.
Use my piece 10 Careers In Education, But Out of the Classroom to guide your thinking as you reflect.
Create a Personal and Professional Vision
This year I learned a very hard, but important lesson about work-life balance. We are more than professional beings. We are friends, children, siblings, partners, spouses, and most importantly, humans. Of course we want to work in fields where we make a difference, love what we do, and get compensated a nice coin to do so - but its important to consider who we are and want to be as people, and create a vision based on this information. Consider the personal and professional life you'd like to curate for yourself by thinking about the following:
Joy and Rest
Do the Work
Create a vision board. Align your conversations with God, your therapist, and your journaling/on-going reflection with this vision.
Live in the Present Moment While Planting Seeds for the Future
This is one of my favorite chapters from Don't Sweat the Small Stuff...and It's All Small Stuff. The gist of this chapter is to not spend our time worrying about past problems and future concerns. However, just because you are not worrying doesn't mean that you should not be planning. In fact, planning helps to eliminate worry and frustration. For example, if someone is working towards becoming a more altruistic person, their ongoing work may include asking God to help them correct selfish thoughts, and actively listening in conversations instead of preparing to share a similar experience of their own. For someone who struggles with managing and saving funds, they might consider learning more about financial literacy and investing to become financially comfortable in the future. These people are doing the work to ensure their future selves are individuals who are more selfless, considerate, and responsible.
The goal here is to find a balance between personal and professional development, while also practicing gratitude for our journey and all that we have now. There are always so many things to be thankful for.
Speak abundance and peace over your life. I've listed four affirmations below that support me in this work.
I am exactly where I need to be.
I am extremely loved and blessed.
I have so much to be thankful for.
I will have everything that is meant for me.
Thank you for reading! Sending so much love and wishing you all a wonderful holiday and happy New Year. <3