Sunday is my favorite day of the week. It's a great opportunity to rest and reflect. I remember my first few years of teaching and feeling the impact of the Sunday Scaries. I was filled with anxiety in anticipation of the upcoming week. I spent most of my day lesson planning and grading, so naturally, I was not well rested for the week ahead. Before I knew it, it was Monday morning and I was just as tired as the previous Friday. The cycle continued for YEARS until I decided to reject the unproductive thoughts that were not serving me. I had to shift a few things about my mindset and work habits. Was it challenging? Yes. Was it worth my peace of mind? Absolutely.
I had to LEARN how to rest, ALLOW myself to be AVAILABLE for rest. Then, actually rest. That's always the hardest part for me, lol.
Here are some ideas to beat the Sunday Scaries:
If you need to catch up on work, schedule work time for your Sunday. Put your phone on Do Not Disturb, turn the TV off, focus on your to do list, and get things done. Determine what is most important in order for your Monday to run smoothly and knock those tasks out. Give yourself permission to be okay if you don't get everything done. Let's be honest, there's always something that needs to be done.
Make the most of your planning time. Create a POWER list that contains your most important tasks that need to be done in order for the following work week to function. Don't overload it with more than you can handle. Use your prep period to get things done. This means setting clear boundaries around your time and being very careful with how you spend it.
Only grade what is necessary. I remember spending hours grading papers. Why? Because I thought I had to. Turns out, I didn't! Provide meaningful feedback to scholars on their progress, but don't waste your time off grading work that doesn't yield high impact on student achievement.
Set time frames and stick to them. Are you constantly thinking about work? Maybe even dreaming about work? In December, we featured advice from Patience Riley, LPC in our subscription box. She shared a tip with me that I believe can work for you. Schedule WORRY time. This can be 5-10 minutes of journaling. See her post here.
Give yourself permission to rest. Let's be honest, you're not on the clock right on nights and weekends. You are an educated professional with an impressive set of skills, but you're also a human being with needs. Tend to those needs every day and enjoy every single minute.