I guess in this post I will tell you what I have been up to and why I haven’t been up to since I haven’t been blogging as consistently as I was previously. January of this year I set certain goals pertaining to this blog, my career in fashion, and the overall brand of Her Goody Bag. Of course God had a different plan for me and I wasn’t sure if I was ready to accept it. Many of you know that I am a teacher and have a sincere passion for educating today’s youth. Things in education reform across the country have people wanting to “jump ship” and pursue a career where they will make more money, have less stress, and be respected. Well I felt like “jumping ship” plenty of times and it wasn’t the summers off that made me stay. After I set my goals for the HGB brand in January, God quickly changed the direction of the path that I was taken. Late January I found out about a Masters Program at Columbia University for pursuing a degree in Educational Leadership. I had intended on getting my 2nd Masters in about five years, but God said “No, you’re going to do this now.” Long story short, I had about two weeks to get transcripts and recommendation letters, and write a personal statement to meet the February 15th deadline.
Fast forward to March of 2013. I was scheduled to have my virtual interview the day of my mother’s birthday. We had planned a huge dinner for her and I tried to reschedule, but to no avail. March 25th was my interview and about two weeks letter I was accepted into one of the most prestigious programs across the country. In May, I began my first semester, but that was only with pre-course work. I started classes immediately after the school year was over and was in school Monday-Saturday 8-5 (somedays 6:30) with the exception of a few days for the month of July. It was intense, but amazing.
So here we are, October of 2013 and I feel like I am drowning in work. Not only am I grading papers constantly, I’m planning lessons, going to meetings, facilitating meetings, doing school work, and much more. I fee like every area of my life is suffering, not because of the program, but because I do not have balance. I knew this year would be extremely difficult, but it feels like whenever I think I have a grasp on everything that I need to accomplish and I am finally “together,” I am set back. I have a long year ahead of me and I need to get everything under control sooner rather than later.
My spiritual life is suffering, my blog is suffering, my relationships are suffering, my health is suffering (I’ve been sick twice already , I’m always in physical pain, and let’s not talk about the weight gain). I know that I won’t be able to do everything exactly as I have done in the past, and I know that I will have to make sacrifices, but today is the day I get some of my life back. Here is my plan on how to achieve balance because “Balance is Essential to Life.”
- Assessment- I had to look at the areas of my life that i pay the most attention to, the areas that could use more attention. You have to acknowledge that there is a problem.
- Write Goals- what do you really want to achieve? You have to write it and make it plain. So it’s like creating a balance vision board
- Set a schedule for EVERYTHING-I have three planners in addition to my calendars on all of my electronics. If I don’t schedule time to do something I will forget and it won’t get done. I even have to schedule time to eat. I haven’t been eating properly lately, especially at work and we all know how much I love food. I schedule dates, relaxation time, pampering sessions, social gatherings, etc. I have a color coded planner so I can see where most of my time goes, and I try to reorganize my schedule so I don’t feel overwhelmed or like I can’t meet deadlines.
- Disconnect- I am not on my social media channels as frequently as I used to. I realized how much time I was spending scrolling and double tapping on Instagram. I a lot a certain amount of time each week (somedays I really don’t go on to avoid distractions) for Social Media.
- Prioritize I look at my schedule and see what is most important. Then I create a plan to get things done.
- Set a Timer- When I’m grading I allot a certain amount of time to spend on a class or a specific assignment. I set a timer on my phone and I feel great when I get all of my work done before the timer goes off. I do that with everything now.
- Say No- This is probably one of the most valuable lessons that I have learned. I get asked to do things and go places all of the time. I used to feel guilty when I said no, but now i see the importance when it comes to achieving balance.
I pray that I get it together soon. I feel like I’m talking about balance every other day lol. I hope this post helps!