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Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Dec 04 2011

Burnt out? My advice…

Take 2 weeks off of work.

No I don’t mean to LITERALLY take off work for 2 weeks. I mean cut down your work hours outside the school day GREATLY.

2 weeks ago when I thought I had reached my breaking point I decided cut down my hours dramatically. Was I nervous I wouldn’t be as well planned? Absolutely. Was I feeling guilty for putting in what seemed like even less than the minimum? Yes. Could I have been frowned upon for the lack of effort I was putting towards some things? Probably.

However. 2 weeks later I can feel my second wind coming on. Because I have started seriously balancing my personal and work life I can tell my body is getting to a point where I’m going to be sprinting again. Not only that, I can tell the atmosphere of my classroom is changing. I laugh with my kids and there are moments where we can just joke around. And I also enjoy teaching them. Nothing has gotten easier, I’m just rekindling my sanity.

And you need to too. Because I promise you are doing nothing for those kids when you are miserable. And it is going to be worse if you have to leave for health reasons and they are replaced by subs daily (at least what we’ve been dealing with in our building. Maybe your school is better about re-hires).

Take care of yourself, that means if 2 weeks isn’t long enough try another. Find the things that can wait and LET THEM WAIT. I feel like I’m finding myself again and my love for my kids is growing much more.

Have faith. And do it.

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