Push Yourself - Rest - Repeat


It's 12:37am as I write this sentence. I'm tired. I should be in bed, but there's a lot going on still. Well, not really, but umm... for this to make sense we're going to have to rewind a bit.

I was a band director for most of my teaching career. Absolutely loved (most of) it, but teaching band takes its toll. Not only that, but I was feeling both complacent and restless. It was time for a change. A new challenge.

I went back to school... you know... because being a full time band director, husband, and father wasn't enough on my plate, now I was going to add more work. I was going to add more commitments. I was going to add more things that require time, but had nothing I could let slip to be able to get that time. I was insane. I wrote reflections on bus trips with the high school marching band. I woke early while on family vacations to head to the hotel lobby to get an hour of quiet time to read. I took tests on a laptop while the kids were swimming in the pool with the rest of the family.

I pushed myself. I earned my Ed.S. It was time to rest.

Rest didn't last long. It wasn't long before I was moving out of the band room and into the STEM lab. I had new toys to learn, new projects to try to fund, and three curricula to write. Time to push again. I pushed hard in the first semester, took my lumps on ideas that didn't pan out, reflected, revised, and hit it again the second semester. The second semester was more restful. The second time around is always easier, more relaxed, less stressful. Rest while you can.

That summer, I made a decision. I had never applied to present at a music teachers' conference. I didn't feel like I had anything important enough for people to come sit and listen to me. Maybe I didn't think I had the clout. Perhaps I lacked the wisdom, or just wasn't interested in making a name for myself. Nothing against the people that do that kind of thing, but I never considered it as a band director. Now that I had moved to the tech lab, and had a year under my belt, I had ideas to share. I had opinions about what others should be trying, and best of all, I had no idea if any of it was any good or not. I decided to apply to present. I decided that I was going to step in front of groups of people and tell them what I do in my classroom, why I thought it was a good idea, and how I managed to pull it off. Maybe I was crazy to think people would listen. Maybe I hadn't met anyone that knew what they were talking about, so all my ideas seemed great to me. Maybe I was well rested.

Why does being well rested often end up being restless?

I applied. I presented. I am going back for more. Next week I'll be presenting three sessions at a conference nearby. I can't tell you how excited / terrified I am about it. That's also why I'm up this late. I just wrapped up four more presentation applications (two different presentations at two conferences) and I'll probably write a couple more tomorrow night... but not during the day. Tomorrow is my mother's birthday, after all.

Time to push myself through these applications, and the presentations next week. Then rest and repeat.

Take time to make the world a better place every day.

Comments

  1. I can so relate to this. It's hard for me to sit still for too long. I'll bust my butt to accomplish one thing with intention to rest and before I even get to the rest my brain is working on something new. It's a good thing in that I'm always pushing myself but I'm also always spreading myself thin and I honestly think now that I don't feel "normal" unless things are crazy.

    Anywho, no real input here but just wanted to comment to say I can relate to all of this!

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    Replies
    1. I'm with you, Beth. I have a really hard time reminding myself to take that rest between major projects. I guess that's just something we have to remember to work on.

      Thanks for reading, and taking the time to comment.

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