When I started my blog, I wanted it free of drama. No, not free of emotions or tears because I do have them.
But I want it to be a place where I can give you the heads up when homeschooling becomes tough. The ups and downs of homeschooling or when homeschooling is not an overnight success can make you feel defeated.
Focusing on feeling utterly defeated at times is not about what I didn’t do for the year. It is about the lessons I learned from my failures.
Do You Cheat Yourself?
It’s about empowerment and it is the way I stay stoked about homeschooling. I do believe in the power of positive thinking.
Look at these ideas I pull up from deep down and bring to the surface when I feel defeated at times.
It’s About the Journey, Not the Destination.
The destination is important, but it is what is done day to day that matters in the end.
Did you know the destination can change? I don’t mean homeschooling, but I do mean when a child becomes an adult sometimes their plans are not what you planned.
Focus on molding them to be the person you want instead of the plan.
Learning and building character is like layering. Each layer takes painstaking time to build.
Before I started homeschooling, I had an idea that I wanted my teaching days to be rigorous, but filled with practical learning activities.
It didn’t happen overnight, but I did think success happened quicker. I’m a bit delusional, I admit.
It’s not because I had unrealistic expectations, but I did have high expectations. That is a fine, but subtle difference.
High expectations can be a trap of discouragement.
Not everybody coming to homeschooling has unrealistic expectations, but even “ambitious” homeschooling has a way of biting you back.
Look at my article, Homeschooling for the Love of Learning – Does it Really Work.
I have never wanted my sons to abandon the freedom to learn at home; so I have had to reevaluate realistic expectations.
During the grueling years of homeschooling, I learned that my homeschool vision or ideas can fade.
Each year I have to remind myself to refine my expectations to achievable so that I don’t fall into the trap of disappointment.
Refining expectations, showing up at the teaching table each and every day, focusing on the very short time together before your kids are out of the house and the magnificent moments of today are huge motivators for me each day.
Mistakes are Proof that You’re Trying.
Making mistakes are part of homeschooling. Many times mistakes are made just because of a lack of knowing. There is nothing wrong with that.
We learn from failures and we improve. I have made many mistakes.
- I didn’t match the right curriculum to one of my son’s learning style.
- I over planned for the day and ended up frustrating myself and my kids too.
- I said said something to one of my son’s in anger.
- I pushed my sons because I wasn’t sure they were giving me their best.
The point is I can accurately define each one (admit them) and do something about them.
Do You Want a Positive Guarantee That Homeschooling Will Be Successful?
It’s not the mistakes that kills the joy of our homeschooling, it’s not changing or correcting the mistake.
You don’t expect your kids to not make mistakes, so don’t make a different standard for yourself. Keep balanced about what you expect from yourself as a teacher.
Like your child, you do expect them to learn from their mistakes.
I would rather risk a change or mistake then to complete my homeschool journey and live with “what ifs” or regrets.
I would rather live by the saying, “The Man Who Makes No Mistakes Does Not Usually Make Anything”.
The Good and Bad of Comparisons.
I have said it often that comparisons can rob you of homeschool joy.
There are probably less than a handful of people that can say they know your exact circumstances when it comes to homeschooling.
Even saying that, I too can be guilty of comparing myself with others whose circumstances are completely different than mine.
Comparisons hurt because they can reflect our short comings or where we may have failed in homeschooling.
However, comparisons can have a positive effect if we use it like a measuring tool.
I ask myself can I do better? Do I need to take the criticism or comparison and apply it to myself and do better?
Sometimes what I think I am doing and what I am actually accomplishing do not equal.
I need to take a closer look at what I am doing because a comparison can spur me on to be better. Not stress me, but stimulate me is what an objective comparison should do.
Homeschooling is still scary at times. Some days, I still feel like I am navigating uncharted waters. But I would rather take the risk.
Our adventure reminds me of another saying that I keep tucked away too and remember from our study of the American Revolution.
The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave.
What do you keep tucked away deep down and bring up when you fight the feelings of disappointment?
Hugs and love ya,
Look at some more ammo: