Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and Steady Mom
Have you ever just wanted to quit? Throw in the towel–hand in your resignation?
I have. Just a few weeks ago, in fact.
Maybe it had something to do with it being February, the notorious homeschool burnout season. Or perhaps the fact that my husband had two work trips to Asia with Love146 in the month, leaving me to single parent for several days. Maybe because I launched a new e-book, which has occupied mornings, evenings, and in-betweens for quite a while.
Or maybe we’re all just a bit stir-crazy, longing to see leaves on trees and flower buds once more.
Know what I mean? Have you ever experienced any of these burnout signs?
- Complaints from your kids, more than usual
- Everything seems harder than usual
- More tears around, from you and/or the children
- You find yourself escaping–to the computer or the TV or the pantry
How should we handle the times when we feel like quitting?
1. Consider school.
That’s right, I said the “s” word. It’s fine to consider the pros and cons of the educational options you have.
Last year I spent time visiting the public and private schools in my area–just to see. Doing so showed me the options, and also ended up confirming even more our choice to homeschool. We always want to remain open-minded to the venue that will serve our kids’ learning best.
2. Don’t make any rash decisions.
Sure, consider school, but don’t sprint down the street and drop your child off on the sidewalk!
There’s no need to rush into a decision without proper time to evaluate what is best.
3. Write a list of what you love about homeschooling.
At times when I’m tempted by school, I remind myself of all we love about our current lifestyle–the flexibility, the individualized education, the ability to go at the children’s pace. In spite of the challenges, it’s a pretty good thing we have going on here.
Bring out your family’s mission statement and review your motivation and purpose behind why you’ve made the choices you’re living with.
4. Take a break.
Traditional school teachers can’t just choose to take a break when students (or themselves) are getting antsy. But we can.
Maybe we need a day off, maybe a week, maybe a month. What really matters is to take what you need. Three months off in the summer is overrated anyway.
5. See what spring brings.
I am often astounded at how a simple change of seasons can make life seem easier. We’re well into March now, with spring right around the corner. Days are longer and life is brighter.
We may find the hard aspects of life lighten up all on their own.
Have you ever had a period when you wanted to quit homeschooling? What steps did you take to bounce back?