Well first, let me apologize for the bossy title.
I’m not normally so forceful, it’s just that I happen to have encountered a lot of moms lately who are dealing with burn-out.
Like, drag-me-up-off-the-floor-to-make-a-quesadilla level of burn-out and exhaustion.
I think a lot of things can cause us to burn out, and right now, I think a lot of us are still coping with pandemic exhaustion.
Yesterday I was talking with some friends and we decided that the pandemic has made everything at least 15 percent harder.
Some things are even harder than that.
- My son opening a bank account – at least 40 percent harder than it used to be.
- Our family just bought a car – minimum 50 percent harder than it was two years ago when we bought a car.
And this applies to everything right now.
Yesterday on the way to physical therapy, I realized I forgot a mask, which is still required at the clinic. I found one ON THE FLOOR OF MY CAR, picked it up, inspected it, and put it on my face.
Near my mouth.
Where the food goes.
(Speaking of food – food is just always hard. Forever. Send Doordash.)
So if you are like me, you are always looking for ways to make things a bit easier.
That’s where this post comes in.
And my bossy tone.
Because none of us feels like it’s OK to give up, right?
Our culture tells us moms are supposed to work hard, be exhausted, surrender to the messy house and messy bun, and then start drinking wine at 4 p.m.
Yikes. (Yikes about the wine being the answer – I have proudly rocked a messy bun pretty much every day of my life since college).
We’re constantly told that to BE ENOUGH, we have to DO “ENOUGH.”
Now, I wrote a whole book about how this is not true, but still, I get haunted by the lies. They sneak up on me like ninjas whispering: “your bathroom sink is gross right now, you are a Complete Failure As a Human Being.”
Doing less in your homeschool
A while back, I sent out an email to my blog friends (you guys!) asking about your Number 1 struggle with homeschooling.
It was kind of incredible – the answers varied, but many, many of them said the same thing: being consistent.
Now I’m not saying I have all the answers, but I definitely think I have an answer to this:
Doing less it just easier than doing more. It’s a lower barrier to entry. It’s attainable and therefore less intimidating to start.
I know – we think homeschooling isn’t supposed to be easy, because then we aren’t “doing enough“.
But I promise you, that isn’t the case.
And if trying to do it all is causing you to feel exhausted and burned out, you’re kind of shooting yourself in the foot, friend.
The past several weeks, my daughter and I have been doing a pared down, simplified version of homeschooling.
And amazingly, we’ve been really consistent about it.
Here’s the thing: Less is more when you do it more often.
And you know how I know it’s enough?
Every day Almost every day, we get through everything we set out to do.
Is it perfect? No.
Is it fancy? No
Is it infinitely Instgrammable? Gosh no.
Do those things really matter?
Hell to the No.
A mindset shift
So as you plan our your days and weeks, I have a few resources for you to simplify things:
- Cactus Schooling – my gentle approach to homeschool planning.
Sending virtual hugs friends, and a reminder that you don’t have to do it all to homeschool really well.
I promise. 💙
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Great message Kara! And a very realistic one. I say, let’s not be robots but real humans!
Donnesa McPherson says
This is gold Kara ❤️ Thank you for sharing and taking out all the fancy bumbo jumbo that can be found in some homeschool circles. I have come away from watching some of these homeschool day in the life on YouTube and felt like a failure and there was no way to measure up. When I get to read about other homeachoolers that are taking a gentler approach to teaching their children, it makes my heart and mind happy. I know I can’t be the only person and appreciate what you write and am loving your book! It’s part of my read before the new school year starts Monday ❤️❤️❤️ Thank you again ❤️❤️❤️
Kara, will you share a bit more about writing? That is always my concern. Did your son do a lot of writing? I’m planning to have my daughter take an online class this year, but have heard several recommend this book. Obviously, that would be less expensive than an online class. I would love to hear more about writing, if you have time. Thanks!
Kara S. Anderson says
We have done very little formal writing here. For a while, I worried I was falling down somehow, but then it occurred to me that I’m a writer by training, and whether I’m correct or it’s just hubris, I feel like I know how writing actually works in the real world, and every writing program we tried sucked the enjoyment out of writing and sometimes reading. 😣
So instead, we’ve read a ton, read-aloud a ton, listened to audiobooks and the kids write for fun. When my son was 16 and entered college early and needed to write a paper, we used the Commonsense Press guide and it was plenty. He got As on his first two papers and has been doing great writing at the college level.
Of course, this is just my limited experience with one kid, but I hope it helps a little. 💚
Thanks so much for replying, Kara! Encouraging words!