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Creating Margins

I recently finished a devotion series about creating margins in your life.

What does this mean?

Well, it means that you put boundaries around yourself so you can have time to relax and recharge.

This is something I have not done well…or at all…since I began working on my college degree in 2006.  I’ve pretty much worked non-stop.

All work and not as much play have taken their toll on me, and I am finally recognizing the need to plan better and slow down.

It’s challenging because teaching does not allow for much free time.  I get paid for 7.5 hours of work each day.

This is laughable.

I work between ten and twelve hours a day and still cannot get everything done.

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m beginning to prioritize.

Lesson plans always come first followed by things with deadlines (my IPDP is due on the 24th…I’m done already).  The rest of the things on my to-do list come last.

Lesson planning is hard for me.  I’m very meticulous and try to envision how the lessons will come across to my students.  Planning for ninety-minute class periods, five days a week, is a lot of work.  I cannot imagine how elementary teachers plan for entire days with multiple subjects to cover each day!

I’ve begun working on my lesson plans on weeknights and try to finish before the weekend.  This is allowing me to create a buffer of two days during which I do not allow myself to do ANYTHING work-related.

It’s been refreshing to come home and just be

I’ve managed to do some knitting in the middle of the week…after my lesson plans have been finished…

I even made a healthy dinner, although I’ll admit that it was my second choice, eaten only AFTER my local Mexican restaurant totally screwed up my phone-in order and added cheese to my bean burritos.  This happens frequently…and they had the nerve to charge me even when I went back to get a refund.  I’ll be the unpleasant person raising a ruckus later today…

Friday afternoon, I got my nails done after school (before I headed home to grade my last set of reading logs and head to the football game)…

Go ahead and be jealous of my bejeweled nails…

Relaxing, though, is tough.  It’s hard to catch up on rest when you constantly deny yourself the pleasure of sleeping.  Evidence of this manifested itself at the game when I heard an announcement over the PA system that someone had lost their keys and a sheriff’s deputy could be seen about it.

I decided to do a look-see to make sure I had mine.

Of course I didn’t.

The keys were mine, and I’d had no clue…less than eight minutes before the end of the game.

God is good, is He not?

I’m slowly learning the importance of saying no to things.

I don’t feel badly for not taking on additional responsibilities such as club sponsorships at school.

I know myself well and don’t think I can manage anything else.

Being self-aware is a good thing, I think.

I may change my mind when I get to work and take another look at my to-do list…

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