Summer: Tips for Balancing Family and Work Without Losing Your Mind

Summer sunflower


The glorious goal teachers look forward to each year. The finish line. The light at the end of the tunnel.

Summer is bittersweet for teachers. We will miss the students we have worked with all year long. However, it is a much-needed break from all of the effort we put in for 180 days of the year. Let’s face it. Teachers work very hard and are under a lot of pressure and stress. Summer is a reprieve for us.

Summer is the time of year to which many teachers look forward. After working hard for ten months, we aresummer flip flops eager to see the days where we can sleep in, spend time with family, stay up late, and work on projects we put off from August to May (or September to June depending on where you live). This is also a time where we can reflect, focus on professional development, and make plans for the upcoming school year.

Work vs. Family

I for one sometimes find it hard to turn off work mode – I still check emails, work on presentations, and learn as much as I can before the new school year begins. Sometimes, as the summer progresses, I realize I have not spent as much time with my family as I would like. Somehow the things on my list don’t seem to get checked off.

Every summer, I say that I am not going to work. I plan all of these wonderful activities to do with my family. Every summer, I fail to say no to someone and I end up working on presentations or special projects for various people in my school district. Each summer, I have a list of apps to try, ¬†websites to browse, and professional development to attend. I’m not even going to mention projects in my house. How can I find time to get all of it done and still have time to enjoy my family? It’s tough, but I try to get it all (well most of it) done.

Tips to Balance Family and Work

  1. Create a schedule. I know. It sounds basic but developing a schedule will help you to see where your time is going. I schedule time for cleaning, time for activities¬†such as reading, outside time, and inside time and yes, professional development and blogging time. I find that if I don’t create a schedule NOTHING gets done.
  2. Get up early or go to bed late. In my house, I get up super early, I know, I know. It’s summer I should enjoy sleeping late. However, I actually like getting up early because of it’s the only time I really have to myself. I allow my kids to stay up late and sleep a little later than usual, but the morning is mine. I’m more focused in the mornings since my head is clear.summer balance
  3. Stick to your schedule. I am guilty of not sticking to my schedule and I always regret it. It is so easy to say, “Just 5 more minutes,” and an hour later your kids are staring at you wondering about breakfast.

Make Family Plans

  1. Make a family bucket list. Gather your family and create of list of things you would like to do together. If you have something to look forward to, you will quickly finish those last few things that you wanted to get done today. Hang up the list in a place where everyone can see it. It’s fun to dream up adventures and cross them off your list together.
  2. Be present. When you have family time scheduled, have a no phone and no work policy. Do activities that require you to talk to each other and interact with each other. Don’t think about emails or social media. Enjoy your time together.

How do you balcance your fmaily with work in the summer? Leave a comment below to share your tips.

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