Sunday, June 29, 2014

Are You A "Yes" Man?

I am. I am the first to offer to help, to volunteer, to take on the next task.
I proudly stand and wave my hand if there is a job to be done.
Here's the problem with that.
When I was younger,  I had such energy and enthusiasm that I could balance university full-time, working full-time, a full - time social life, dating, volunteering and family with a smile. Sure, I wasn't sleeping, and every year or so I would hit a wall of exhaustion and be hospitalized with some asthma - related issue....but I somehow crammed it in.
Then I became a wife, mom and a teacher. Suddenly the energy became laser - focused elsewhere and I quickly forgot the Shannon beneath the Mom, Honey and Madame. I still tried to be Mrs. Yes, though.
As educators, it is our job- nay - mission to be role models. I fall short of what I expect of myself as a teacher. Of course, I expect myself to be nearly perfect.
As a mom, I do the same. I do not ever want my child to feel that she was forgotten, put second, dishonored as a result of my "other 200 kids"- her own words.
This has caused me to cram parenting, teaching, report cards, marking, cooking, wifely duties, cleaning, dog - walking, baseball tournaments, shopping, commuting, volunteering at baseball and school council bingos, church, organizing and buying a group gift for my daughter's teacher, sending emails and organizing things as president of Alberta Teachers of French, cleaning and packing up the temporary classroom home that I had this year, rewriting all my documents, scanning old ones, submitting all of them and applying for jobs and going for interviews.
All in the last two weeks. Exhausting read, n'est - ce pas?
Where does that leave me?
Well, suffice it to say there are moments for us "yes men" when the Big Rocks simply DO.NOT.FIT. Everything felt important to me.  How could I be forced to choose?
I managed this with relative sanity, but my "Health" Big Rock got tossed out for the time being. My "Happiness"  Big Rock was temporarily suspended. And I felt like my mother, wife and, most importantly, SELF Big Rocks suffered the most.
So last night, with my classroom jammed into corners of my house, I sat down and literally went through my Big Rocks.
I took them all out, washed them with love, re-labelled them and meditated upon them.
It was then that I realized that I had a rock for happiness, health, family and students, but had none for me, my husband, my child,  my friends. So I labeled the family one with friends too- as my friends are like family. I made one for my kid, one for my husband, one for me. There are seven and that number cannot change. How I achieve happiness will change and embodies my Habit 7. Health needs will evolve.  So will all my life, but now, my priorities are set.
As a yes man, I want to add more rocks- but for now, the seven I have are absolutely all my bucket will hold.
It is summer break, and it is time to get back to knowing my Big Rocks closely again!
Have you labeled your Big Rocks?
À la prochaine, mes amis!
Mme Poulet