Work-life balance has been a buzzword for quite some time now, and I can’t stress enough how important in the teaching profession it is not to work.
If you want to be healthy, efficient, good at your job and happy at the same time, you have to learn to let go. To stop and take a breath.
It is essential for your personal and professional life that you find joy in the work you do. And you can’t enjoy our job if you are permanently stressed and overworked. Your personal life will suffer and afterward, it’s a downward spiral.
How to find the time? Here’s a short list of tips.
1] Prioritise. You can never do all the tasks in one afternoon or evening, you’d be overwhelmed. Chose the most important ones, plan your work, and after you’ve finished them, don’t work.
2] Plan and prepare. Whatever it is, a lesson, a game, your lunch, paperwork, be ready. Prepare before so that you can finish your task effectively. Otherwise, you will improvise too much, panic and lose precious time.
3] Share. If you share your lesson plans and activities with colleagues it is likely they will also share their resources with you. You don’t have to do everything alone.
4] Don’t try to invent the wheel. There are tons of textbooks, grammar books, resource packs, pdfs, lesson plans, videos, apps, podcasts. You don’t have to prepare all your materials from scratch.
5] Delegate. I know many female teachers with families who after they come home from work: cook, clean the house, do the laundry, do the dishes, walk the dog, do the shopping, do homework with their children, etc. I’m sure those of you with older kids could delegate some of these responsibilities to them and be strict about it. Also, I’ve noticed how teachers are considered to have more free time and they are often expected by their partners to do all the housework. Talk to your partner about their expectations and try to find a mutually satisfying solution.
6] Don’t waste your time. Learn to say no and don’t spend time with people who you don’t like. Don’t do things that aren’t important or necessary and which don’t make you feel happy.
Let me know in the comments if you have any other tips how to effectively manage your time.