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I found my inspiration for tonight’s blog post while watching one of Hallmark’s Christmas movies. Cheesy, I know, but every now and then you find a nugget of gold and tonight a line that was repeated over and over was “Work to live, don’t live to work.” This line really resonated with me because there are often times when I become absorbed in what I do at school and forget to put it to the side even after I get home for the night.

Today, however, after an afternoon of meetings (we had a school improvement day, so no students in the afternoon) I met up with some of the ladies from my alumni sorority group. One of these ladies I also went to college with and we took some time for ourselves to catch up, share teaching stories and enjoy a girls’ dinner out. Once again, this is not something that I normally do, but it felt good to not be caught up in my work all day and to give myself some “me-time.”

I believe that as teachers we do everything we can to help make a difference in our students’ lives each day. However, we need to remember as well that in order for us to take care of them, we also need to take care of ourselves. If we don’t take even those few moments to watch a cheesy Hallmark movie, spend time with our furry friends, or remember to set aside the laptop for quality time with our families, we don’t help our students in the long rung because we become tired and burned out.

So instead, you need to remember you and try not to forget about what’s best for yourself no matter how much you want to make a difference in their lives. Show them that a person can love what they do but that we also have our interests outside of the classroom. (I do know that many students are always surprised when they see their teachers out in public…no, we do not live at the school even though it feels like it sometimes:) )

On that point, I challenge you to take a few moments in between making quizzes and lesson plans, to have a cup of hot chocolate or apple cider (it’s cold in Illinois right now), turn on the Hallmark channel or A Charlie Brown Christmas and take a few moments for a “you”-break. Happy Teaching everyone, and here’s to a happy you!