What Do I Do Just For Me?

My Much Needed Alone time post had this comment left by a colleague:
Good morning Sally. You get a lot done in your alone time! Your post really captures the tension between satisfaction of being useful to others and useful to yourself and your own agenda. I would like to hear a little more about your alone time that is not work-related 🙂 What do you do just for you?

What do I do just for me?

1. March 19th I am going to TCRWP Saturday Reunions (and have attended every Oct and March Reunion since I discovered TCRWP in 2009), not because it is work-related (which one could say it is) but because I love learning from really bright people and that day, a plethora of smart people are gathered and they just happen to be speaking about best practices in literacy.
2. This Sunday I am meeting a colleague for brunch and we will talk about our work and I do this for me because it gives me positive energy.
3. All summer long, I drove to meet 3 other ladies (one of them is the author of the comment above!) at a Starbucks and we wrote and shared and I enjoyed working on my writing life in the company of others who enjoy writing, too. I did this for me and not because I am a teacher of writing workshop.
4. I participate in twitter chats related to literacy because I get energy from the ideas of other bright educators.
5. I blog (and often it is about my work) but I blog because it is fun and I figure things out as I write.
6. I read the latest literacy-related resources, not just because of my job, but because I get lots of energy from planning the best for those students who I am teaching.
7. I read LOTS of children’s literature because I have fun discussing books with young kids (which is one of the perks of my job!).
As I started this list, I wondered how long it would become. I’m going to stop at Lucky #7
To be honest, I do spend LOTS of my time doing what others see as work-related things. But I am OK with this because I don’t think of my work as just a paycheck. I don’t think of my work as something I only do from 9-5pm. I am a teacher and it is my career. I enjoy it and want to keep doing things to make me better at it. And yes, at times it exhausts me. But I can’t think of rewarding work that wouldn’t exhaust me. So I am glad this is how I choose to spend my time – some of it alone, some in the company of bright, literacy-minded people – doing these seven things just for me.
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13 thoughts on “What Do I Do Just For Me?

  1. Aileen Hower says:

    So I am glad this is how I choose to spend my time – some of it alone, some in the company of bright, literacy-minded people – doing these seven things just for me.

    I think many of us are here and doing the same things for the same reasons. It's wonderful to belong to a like-minded community – and how you describe them is perfect!

    Like

  2. Elisabeth Ellington says:

    I find such a tension between what I do just for me and what I do for work because there is so much crossover. One thing I do just for me is read books published for grownups–can't really use them at work, don't really recommend them to students.

    Like

  3. parkers says:

    What a beautiful way to articulate and celebrate your teaching and learning life! I have had to make a shift this year from my focus on my student's writing to my own reading and writing. I never thought about how this could inform my teaching more positively. It has given me the energy I needed to sustain me.

    Like

  4. parkers says:

    What a beautiful way to articulate and celebrate your teaching and learning life! I have had to make a shift this year from my focus on my student's writing to my own reading and writing. I never thought about how this could inform my teaching more positively. It has given me the energy I needed to sustain me.

    Like

  5. Rachel T. says:

    What you do for you sound eerily similar to what I do for me (minus the TCWRP-a bit too far for me). I am glad I am not the only one who mixes “my time” with my professional growth. I think that is what truly makes us professionals. I also love learning and reading and sharing and writing. I enjoyed your post!

    Like

  6. Ashley Brown says:

    It's nice to know there are others out there who share the same passion for living and breathing our work. Since leaving the classroom, I feel as if a part of me is missing. I'm trying, through Twitter and things like this, to reignite that passion – and all you lovely people help!

    Like

  7. Deborah says:

    Great post! You passionate dedication is admirable and relatable (for me). Teaching can be a life's work, I think. Growing professionally in this work can be deeply personal and rewarding. It's time well spent getting to know self and self as teacher. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Like

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