Thursday, October 29, 2015

I am a WIP

Is there life after teaching?

After 21 years of being a special education teacher, I am nearing the end of my third month of my one year Leave of Absence.

Over the summer I began dabbling in my exploration as a grant writer.  I took classes, read various books and websites, began networking.

Then I was asked to assist an equine assisted therapy center in organizing and running classes. It was a blast!  Working not only with horses, but children and young adults with disabilities.

I kind of lost my way with my grant writing dream.

This week it dawned on my what my problem is.

For 21 years, my life has been ran by deadlines set by someone other than me:  start of school, lesson plans, posting of grades, report cards, progress reports, special education paperwork, daily and weekly notes to parent, and the list goes on.  Anyone who's ever been in education understands that it is a career shaped by deadlines.

I don't have that now.  Other than random deadlines like grant proposal due dates, I don't have any set schedule.  I can show up in my office when it fits.

Some days it just doesn't fit!  Yesterday Mom had doctor's appointments - I will never understand how two 30 minute appointments can take all day!  But that's what it was.  I love that I can take her to appointments, support her, go shopping between appointments, eat lunch out and enjoy our time together.  All the while NOT getting text messages from my assistants about how my kiddos are falling apart in my absence!

Some days I have nothing planned; and that's what I get done - NOTHING!  That is not saying I don't have things I need to get done, I just don't have a plan of what and when they will get done.  My to do list continues to grow, becase I don't have a plan to get them done.

This week, I decided I will channel my inner-time-manager.   I do, after all, want to get my freelance grant writing business up and running!  I would love to be able to replace my teaching income with writing.

First, I decided that my planner needed a boost - I need color.

I went from this: 

to this:

The colors make me smile! That long list is for today!

I also researched various suggestions from an info-graphic posted on Federation of Independent Business called Powerful Productivity.  

Today, if you look, I have a long list of things to do.  Sadly, it is almost 10 am and I'm still in my pj's!  I need to get dressed and start my day.  I have a frog to find and eat, a pomodoro to set my pace and give me breaks, an Action plan (Method) to get things done, and I have to be like Seinfield and not break the chain!  

I have a plan - but I guess I have to work that plan now!!


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