Off Balance

I wasn’t going to post tonight (I already missed yesterday) because I’m in a bit of a funk today. But that’s the thing about this blog, we try to be honest, even when things aren’t going as great as we wish…

I’m feeling off balance these days and I’m struggling to get back on course. Since my issues with anxiety two years ago I have been really good at trying to maintain balance in my life. I just feel a bit overwhelmed these days and I think that sometimes writing everything down helps so here it goes:

1. Teaching

I absolutely love my class right now and I am so grateful that I was given this opportunity – BUT I’m stressed out at work. I can’t seem to get a handle on my marking pile and I don’t want to short change students and not give them my full comments and feedback. I am in the middle of a really fun and interesting unit that I am very proud of but I feel like every day I’m adjusting my vision and needing to prep more and do more. Technology is a wonderful thing but sometimes it doesn’t work out and needing those back up options had me stressed out today. On top of this I have the typical social-emotional worries for all of my students and I never feel like I have the time to help them individually as much as they need.

2. Running

Running is my stress relief, my mental health break, and a necessary part of my life. I love setting goals and accomplishing them, too! Marathon training has been a crazy process so far and there have been many ups and downs. Right now I’m feeling a bit down with it. My running is going well but the amount of time it takes to complete the training is driving me crazy. Some days I just want to stay home and curl up in a ball instead of throwing on the runners and getting out the door. It was also easier when it was winter time and I had nothing else to do in the evenings – now there’s softball games, barbecues, etc.

3. Health

In the past week I’ve been to massage, physio, and the doctor’s trying to sort out a variety of things. I’m on antibiotics and two different allergy medications. My body is sore from running, exhausted from fighting off infection, and tired from too many nights of not enough sleep.

4. Everything Else

The past few weeks have been a wonderful mix of friends and family visits. I love spending time with everyone and HATE missing out on things so I always say yes even when I really need to stay home and relax or get things done. It’s so hard to balance my needs versus wants when it comes to free time. I feel so much better when my place is clean and laundry is done and put away but when it comes to spending the time to do that everything else seems to take priority – school work, blogging, friends, sports… Whew!

So what am I going to do? Take things one step at a time to get back on track.

Tonight I will come home early from something even though I know I will want to stay late. I am going to set aside time to do my coursework when I won’t have any other distractions. I will remind myself what I love about running and enjoy the time I get to spend doing that. I am going to take time for myself and not worry about all the “should do’s.” And I’m going to try harder to get a full nights sleep each night.

Anyone else feeling the “end of year” push already?

How do you get yourself back on track when you’re off balance?



9 thoughts on “Off Balance

  1. Meaghan, I’m sorry to hear you are feeling this way! I can definitely empathize… maybe not so much with the marathon training, but definitely with the anxiety. One thing I have always done, and that I think pretty much saves my life, is I always always set aside 8 hours for sleep. Often, more than that. Sleep is so essential for our bodies and minds, I feel like we are better able to tackle any of our other daily stresses much better! My sleep has been much better lately thanks to a memory foam mattress topper… like a cloud!! I hope you start feeling better soon, love.

  2. Meaghan- Thanks for your honesty. Sleep is very important as is the word “no”.
    Think of teaching as teaching practise not perfect teaching( I learned that from my yoga teacher who talks about yoga practise, not yoga perfect- the same could go for running) You don’t have to mark “everything”, sometimes students can critic their own work and that is interesting to read.
    Teaching requires so much giving that replenishing our cups is so necessary.
    We have to take such good care of ourselves. Do you take days off when you are sick? I hope so. Do some wonderful things for you on weekends or evenings too, whatever feels good, a pedicure, a nap, a bath with bubbles…be well…

    • Thank you Karen! I really like the idea of “teaching practice” and it makes so much sense to think of it that way. I think I need to take more “me time” then I have been lately. Me time that doesn’t involve running or social time.

  3. I cannot put into words (without tears) how much reading your blog when I’m off balance helps. I am experiencing feelings of ineptitude as a teacher because I have not yet landed a contracted position that allows me to cover living expenses and student loans. Many days I feel like a hypocrite in front of the classroom as a substitute teacher for the day encouraging that students invest time, attention, and neurons in education. I also do volunteer work to get back on balance. Using the education, time, and attention I have received to help others definitely helps turn my frown upside down. Finally you have inspired me to incorporate wwaalkk/rruunning?! into my life. I have done it on random occasions just to get out of a funk. I feels so good. I am working on making it more regular and maybe into a marathon?! Thank you again for all of your lovely, healthy, positive, realistic, sharing via this blog. Best wishes, Carry on!!

    • Thank you so much for your comment Annie! I had another rough day and your kind words just totally lifted my spirits! I am so happy that I can help you in my small way along your journey. Being a substitute is such a hard, often thankless job and I think it’s so easy to get bogged down in everything you’re up against. You will get there to the full time job but it can really be a struggle. Keep it up! You can do it!!

  4. Meaghan, I can relate on some level with so many of these things. When I first started teaching at OSU, I was required to develop multiple classes all at once with little to no time. I was staying up until 2am and then waking up at 6am. It was a train wreck. I got the work done, but never saw the light at the end of the tunnel. It sounds like you are at the point where you probably feel like you need two of you to accomplish everything this is important to you. What I started doing was prioritizing each day. I made a list of things that had to get done, followed by those that could wait until I had time. And know that there IS an end and you WILL make it. It can take time. Do not pressure yourself to do and be all. Do what is best for you. People will understand.

    • Thanks Kristen! I have really tried to start prioritizing and breaking everything up into measurable pieces. I think cutting myself some slack is probably going to be the most important piece!

  5. Pingback: The Vacation to a French Speaking Country | Tale of Two Teachers

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