How to be The Best Homeschool Mom You Can Be

homeschool balance

 

Creating and maintaining balance in your homeschool will depend a lot on mom and how strong she is mentally, physically and spiritually.  In simpler terms:

“Ain’t mom happy, ain’t no one happy.”  Or so the saying goes.

I am often surprised when I speak to moms about how tired and wiped out they are.  I’m not sure why I’m so surprised.  For a long time, I was exhausted too.

I was an exhausted mom, running on caffeine and afternoon chocolate like some domestic junkie.

It dawned on me one day that, as the mom of 8 kids, I was going to be at this parenting and homeschooling thing for a LONG time and that I couldn’t go on the way I was for another 15 years with out some serious problems.

With age and fatigue does come wisdom.  Here are my top 10 sources of healthy, energy:

10 Tips for Increasing Energy Naturally

1. Get up before the kids

Not so simple you say? Well, if this night person can do it, so can you! Even getting up 30 minutes before the busyness of the day can give you just the head start on the daily madness to make for a more peaceful day. If you need more convincing about the power of getting up early, read these 10 {Good} Reasons to Get up Earlier.

2. Go to bed earlier

Before Thomas Edison’s invention of the electric light in 1879, most people slept ten hours each night, a duration we’ve just recently discovered is ideal for optimal performance. When activity no longer was limited by the day’s natural light, sleep habits changed. Research has shown that adults need between 8 and 10 hours of sleep each night for optimal alertness, energy, mood, body weight, perception, memory, thinking, reaction time, productivity, performance, communication skills, creativity, safety, and good health. Sounds like a good investment of time to me!

3. Exercise – even a little bit

Last year I set a goal to exercise more. I purposed ahead of time to make a 30 day commitment to exercise at a specific time and place 3 times per week, scheduling it into my daily plans and not leaving it to chance. Once I mastered 30 days, I reevaluated my goal and set another 30 day goal – time, place, etc. This simple yet intentional focus on fitting exercise into my weekly routine has made a world of difference in my health and energy levels.

4. Drink more water

The human body is believed to be anywhere from 55% to 78% water and the brain is as much as 90% water. Every cell in your body needs water to function well. Knowing that fatigue is a classic sign of dehydration is good reason in and of itself to endeavor to drink more. Coffee may be good for short-term energy but keeping hydrated by drinking more water keeps your energy levels up for the long haul.

5. Moderate caffeine

I realize that this is not a popular saying and please know that I am an avid morning coffee drinker. After an initial spike in energy the first hour after you drink coffee, it lingers in your system between 3 and 8 hours. Tapering off your caffeine intake in the afternoon results in a better night’s sleep.

6. Limit refined carbohydrates

I don’t know if it is my age that make me more sensitive to simple carbs but I know that concentrated sources of sugar like soda, candy, fruit juice, jam, and syrup can create radical spikes in your blood sugar – which often leaves you feeling tired a couple of hours later. With a large, busy family I cannot afford to have my energy levels crash in the middle of the day. Limiting carbs and focusing on whole foods full of natural fiber helps my energy levels remain strong throughout the day.

7. Stop rushing

I have nowhere near mastered this one but I have had brief experiences of simply slowing down and it is uniquely reviving. You know what I’m talking about. You have your day so tightly scheduled that even though you are purposing to spend ‘quality’ time with your kids by playing alongside them, you are secretly tidying up all around them while you ‘play’. Have a single focus and take more time to just be – enjoying the present.

“Being in a hurry. Getting to the next thing without fully entering the thing in front of me. I cannot think of a single advantage I’ve ever gained from being in a hurry. But a thousand broken and missed things, tens of thousands, lie in the wake of all the rushing…. Through all that haste I thought I was making up time. It turns out I was throwing it away.”
― Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are

8. Get outside

Not only will your kids love you for this, sunlight stimulates the brain to release chemicals that elevate your mood and give you more energy. Don’t forget your sunscreen!

9. Pray often

If you are a person of faith, it stands to reason that plugging in to the all-powerful Creator of the universe is going to be an energizing source like no other. Consider reading through the Bible in a Year for day-to-day encouragement too! I have found no better way to be encouraged than by spending time with my Creator.

10. Practice giving thanks

Watch carefully what you are focusing on each day. Are you focusing on your hardships or your blessings? Choosing to be thankful throughout the day has been scientifically proven to result in higher levels of positive states of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, attentiveness and energy. Try keeping a list of thanks in your journal. Listing 3 things per day will result in over 1000 thanks in a year!

I have really enjoyed this weak on the blog.  I think of all of you as I write and pray that you are finding peace and rest in the place that God has you right now.  Being in the trenches of motherhood, especially when we choose to homeschool, is one of the most rewarding experiences we will ever have – despite the hardships.

How about you?  How do you find more energy for your busy days?

This series on Creating and maintaining balance in your homeschool is part of the iHomeschool Network’s Summer Hopscotch series.  To read the whole series from the beginning, click here.  Click on the image below to read more great homeschool posts.

5 day IHN

 

 

 

Marianne Sunderland

Intentional Homeschooling: How to Give Up Good Things so You Can Have The Best

homeschool balance

  This week on the blog, we're talking about creating and maintaining balance in our home schools. We all have 24 hours a day and, in large … [Continue reading]

Homeschool Scheduling for the Busy Homeschool

homeschool schedule

This is not a typical post on how to make a homeschool schedule.  If you need a post like that, read this post I wrote last year called Creating Your … [Continue reading]

What is an Educational Philosophy?

homeschool method

One thing I love about the summer break from school is the extra time I have to step back and think about how and why we are homeschooling. Over … [Continue reading]

Build Your Bundle Homeschool Curriculum Sale Begins Today!

The "Build Your Bundle" - Homeschool Edition sale is here!For one week only (July 21-28) save up to 92% on bestselling homeschooling products, … [Continue reading]

5 Days of Creating Balance in Your Homeschool

homeschool help

You may be wondering why I am writing about balance in the homeschool while we are still enjoying our summer breaks and, more likely than not, … [Continue reading]

Announcing a New Way to Save on Homeschool Resources

The BIGGEST digital homeschooling curriculum sale EVER is coming! Mark your calendars! Save up to 92% on popular homeschooling curriculum! ONE … [Continue reading]

Are You Inspiring?

Being an Inspiration

  I recently had the pleasure of traveling back to the city where I lived a good part of my formative years.  As I drove throughout the towns … [Continue reading]

16 Zucchini Recipes Your Kids Will Eat

kid friendly zucchini recipes

  Our summer garden is blooming and bursting forth with organic goodness.  This year we assigned each of our kids a plot to garden for … [Continue reading]