Saturday, November 22, 2014

Panic City, Population: 1

The first year I taught kindergarten we had something called New Teacher Induction. Sounds like you're joining some sort of clan, right? Whatever. Anyway, the one thing that stuck with me was this: For the first while, you will be in survival mode, but please, don't stay there forever. 

Little did I know that the first year teaching would test all my philosophies and patience, as well zap all my energy. My after school activities included staring blankly at the computer screen and trying to summon the energy to drive home. 

Ten years later, you'd think I'd have it all figured out. Nope. With my days spent with crazy kindergarteners and my nights spent on book promos, I'm at my limit. Vegging nightly with Netflix, though tempting, isn't feasible. And since for several reasons I can't afford to live in Meltdown City, something must be done. So, this is my advice for me and anyone else in the same boat:

Treat yourself: Get a cupcake, get your toes done, go to dinner with a friend, catch a movie. Whatever. Just do something for yourself.

Talk to friends: Speak to someone about what's bothering you. They may be able to help or they may just listen, but connecting with another human makes the process so much more bearable. And Siri can't answer everything. Plus she kind of has a lot of attitude.

Don't rant on Social Media: I did recently post Consider yourself ranted. But that was about it. Ranting makes you look unprofessional and, frankly, unhinged. Slap on the happy face for online encounters and use the phone a friend option for venting. Plus your friends already know that you're crazy, so they won't judge.
Stay healthy: Admittedly I'm not staying healthy right now...but I'm trying to rest up, get out of work on time, and put my feet up. Hitting the gym a few times a week, eating your fruits and veggies, getting a full night's sleep, and taking your vitamins really does solve a lot of problems. And hey, just step away from the pan of brownies.

Find an outlet: Books, games, hobbies, music, writing/journaling, underwater basket weaving, etc. really help to freshen your mind and recharge your batteries. Even a few minutes a day/week will turn you into a proficient basket weaver. Seriously.

Ask questions: Don't shut yourself off from people who could be of help. Suck it up, ask them for what you need! There are no stupid questions, just the ones you're too stupid to ask, Big Dumby.

Take a night/day off: Pick your poison. Are you addicted to British television, 80s movies, or romcoms? Bring it. You deserve it. And things will run smoother if you take some time out every now and then.

Yes, life is hard. But will I give up, either on my day job or writing? No way. Uh-uh. Not happening. I'll keep it together, paste on my happy face, jump in with both feet, and only occasionally have a big girl meltdown and down way too much chocolate. It's all good. 

What do you do to survive the hard, crazy, busy times? Thanks for dropping in! 


  1. Ah, my dear. Thirty years later, you'd think I'd have it figured out. Do put those feet up. With their well done toes. And have a lovely Thanksgiving. (P.S. - Greatly enjoyed the picture of Lucy and Ethel reading Becoming Beauty at the Beauty Parlor. Which one is supposed to be you, and which one Raylynn?)

    1. Apparently I'm Ethel even though I've expressed that my preferred old lady name is Myrtle. And yes, she's Lucy. I do love that picture though. :)

    2. This is such a great post & so true! And yes, Paula, I am Lucy and Sarah is Ethel. This Myrtle stuff is news to me....

    3. Whatever. Why do you think I say, "Punch it, Myrtle!" in the car? Just for funsies...OK, it is fun too! But yes, Myrtle is my chosen old lady name!