Is this all there is? How do we make teaching revolve around your life and not the other way around.

                In the midst of overwhelm, stress, anxiousness and overall misery that comes from feeling overworked, we can often find ourselves saying, is this all there is?

                Is it any wonder that we say that?  Of course overwhelm, stress, anxiousness and overwork isn’t all there is. We know it. But our life doesn’t seem to reflect it.

                There is lots of good time-management and productivity advice about dealing with overwhelm. Here are 3 common pieces of advice about what to do so that  teaching doesn’t dominate our life.

  1. Take a stand. Decide that you don’t want teaching to take over your life and instead be clear about what it is that you want to have as a priority in your life.
  2. Prioritize what is important to you – in your personal life and teaching life – and keep your focus and activities on those priorities.
  3. Enforce limits. Put boundaries around how much time you spend on teaching-related tasks, strategize on how to structure your day so that you maximize time and focus.

                I’m sure we’ve all heard this advice before. So the question is why don’t we follow it? Becacuse, although those feelings of stress & burnout are real, but they’re rarely, truly about the workload.

We are conditioned by our programming (from our families to schooling to society to our training) to work from unhealthy programming. This is the programming that makes us work with perfectionism, people pleasing, procrastination, guilt and overwhelm. Until we can clear this programming and reprogram it to reflect a healed and healthy sense of being in the world we will keep falling into patterns (by default) of falling into overwork, over functioning and self-neglect – whether we see it or not. It’s largely an unconscious pattern that has been normalized as a template of how we go about our daily lives.

                It’s this wounded programming that overwhelms us. When we ask “is this all there is?” that is a life-saving question. It comes from the part of us that knows truth from bullshit. That part might be covered up in conditioning and programming – but underneath all that there is a core part of you that knows how to be healthy, happy, whole and healed.

How do we start to listen to this core voice? Here are some ideas

  • Explore what’s making you unhappy
  • Explore your core wounding patterns
  • Tune into and follow your instinct
  • Say YES only to things you really want to say yes to
  • Learn to say no
  • Tune into your spirit with moments of silence
  • See yourself through the eyes of your creator and don’t listen to anyone else’s story about what your life means.

                Without a sense of this part of us as a core and important aspect of who we are, we flounder. We feel invisible. We feel neglected. We feel unfulfilled. We feel we don’t belong and don’t fit in. We feel misunderstood. We feel something is missing. We feel that life is not coming together.

                Burnout isn’t about workload. It’s about the voice of the core self being drowned out. Burnout becomes the breakdown when we ignore that voice. Burnout becomes the breakthrough when we listen to that voice and heed its advice.