Thursday, November 12, 2015

Finding Balance

As educators, we work long days and we give tirelessly of ourselves. We are relentless when asked to support the teaching and learning of our colleagues and our students. As a leader of educators and a teacher of students it is in our DNA to be present in all that we do. We give.

As educators, there is no calm, there is no rest. Our days are filled with welcomed chaos. The job never remains the same. The challenges and opportunities are in abundance. We don't say "no" when asked to take on a task. We do.

With this in mind, I encourage you to pause and to reflect and to consider the importance of balance.

As educators, finding balance in our lives can be the difference between our happiness and our demise. Finding balance can be the source of our greatness or our failure. When our lives are not balanced, we are not at our best. Lack of balance between work and home can ruin relationships, increase our stress and drive us away from what we are working to achieve. Lack of balance is a formula for disaster. In order to find balance, we must make it a priority. We act.

So, when push comes to shove, what gives? How can you devote the time and energy to each aspect of your life yet still have balance? If you truly want balance in your life, you might want to start here:

Commit.
Prioritize the tasks at hand. You know what needs to be done and when and you know what can wait. Stay true to that, the rest will fall into place. Be committed to your schedule and to what matters most.
Model.
Practice what you preach. If you encourage others to take time for themselves, there is no need to wait yourself. Whether at work or at home, allow yourself to walk away from the tasks. Tomorrow is only a few hours away.
Rest.
Unplug and step away from your device, the computer and most importantly, the emails. If being connected is part of your balance, enjoy that time but be cognizant of the time . Avoid sending working emails to your colleagues. If you send them, they read them. Give them a break too. 
Lead.
Promote and permit those around you to explore all aspects of their work. Building these relationships and supporting others is significant in creating culture and working to find balance in leadership. Finding leaders within allows the tasks to be shared amongst many.
Move.
And finally, get active. If you truly want balance in your life, make sure you are on the move throughout your day both at work and away from the office. Whether it be a scripted routine, heading to the gym or moving about your classroom and your building. Get up and get on your feet.

Finding balance is half the battle. Maintaining that balance is the true test of your commitment to your work and to your health. There are aspects of your day that you have no control over, balance is not one of them. Therefore, find it. You will be glad you did.