For those of you who have been keeping up to date with my blogs or who know me well will know that I have worked within education for 18 years and am planning on starting a year long sabbatical this July. This week was half term and will be the last school holiday that I will have before finishing. An odd feeling!
For me and most people who work within education, term times are a pattern that you live your whole life by. You start the term ready to rumble and well prepared to make a difference. You start that first Monday at 100mph and pretty much stay at that speed until you break up for the next holiday in 6-8 weeks. We all of course count done the weeks and feel a huge sense of relief on the drive home on that last day of term. It usually takes a good chunk of the holiday to slow down and really become yourself again. My wife talks about me being two people a lot; one, in term time and another the rest of the time. You could argue, that in this line of work, certainly the way I manage it, I am never actually me, just extreme versions of me.
I met a friend who is also in education this holiday and we talked about how life for some people has really high highs and very low lows. It started me thinking that working in education is a little like this. I work at full capacity during term time and as much as possible, have to stop during the holidays so I can do it all again next term.
Well… as I said, this was the last one, for a year at least. It has been interesting! My feelings and actions have been really different for this one. I have been more settled, consistent for the people around me and have felt less need to just stop. I have just continued getting stuff done but having fun doing it. It feels good!
The weird thing is, I always kept busy during half terms in the past. I had to, there is always so much to do. I did it, but, and its a big but…… I resented it. The resentment has gone and I love it. Everything is getting better and I haven’t even finished my job yet in fact I am working harder than ever.
There are two bits of learning for me here.
- Its not how hard you work and how much you have to do. Its your head! Keep your head in a good place, top of the list.
- Live in the present and enjoy what you are doing, it doesn’t have to feel like a job. If you look too far ahead, you will trip over what is under your feet today.
So….. I tidied extended my shed while Charlie played in the garden, built a new door for the kitchen with Mirielle, made a chair with my brother in law, caught up with some friends, and took Mirielle to Dartmoor for the night while picking up some more wood for making more projects. It has been an effortless and healthy balance of work and play. It cant go this well next year, surely? Stay tuned to find out