Homeschoolers make a lot of decisions....
What curriculum to use, which books to read, what time to start, when to end, which things to say no to, how much is enough, when to hold the kids accountable, when to let them play, which classes to sign them up for, and on and on.
It can be complicated and confusing, but today I want to give you a roadmap for making decisions. This will simplify everything.
Ready?! Let’s go:
When you have an idea, ask yourself these 5 questions:
1. Do I want to do this?
If the answer is yes, move to the next question. If the answer is no, do NOT do it.
And yes, I even mean if it is teaching math. If you do not want to do something, I suggest not doing it every time.
Now I'm not saying never do math, but I am saying that if you don't WANT to teach math, you need to ask different questions. What other options are there for learning math that do not involve you teaching it?
2. Do I enjoy doing this?
If the answer is yes, move to the next question. If the answer is no, ask yourself: Can I make it more enjoyable? If you can, move to question 3.
If the answer is still no, do NOT do it until you can make it enjoyable.
3. Do I have a clear result I will create?
If the answer is yes, move to the next question. If the answer is no, pause here until you do.
You need to define what the end result of making this decision will be.
By result I mean “I’ll finish the book” or “I’ll finish 100 hours of homeschooling the kids” or “I’ll complete the history lessons for year 2” or “My children will participate in practices and performances for this class this semester”.
Defining what you will do is important. Do not skip this step.
4. Will I make time for it?
At this point you know what I am going to say right?! If the answer is yes, move to the next question. If the answer is no, do NOT do it.
There is no point in deciding to do something if you know deep down that other commitments, or household chores, or relationships, or any other number of things are going to be more important than what you are considering adding.
You have to make time for for the new thing, or else it is just a wish.
Do not add wishes to your to-do list.
Adding wishes leads to overwhelm. Only schedule commitments in your calendar. (I’ll do a whole post on that topic!)
So if you aren’t willing to schedule time for it, do NOT do it.
If you’ve answered yes to the first 4 questions, you’re ready for the last one:
5. How long am I willing to commit to this?
Do not add something to your plate without clear guidelines of how long you are going to do it before you reevaluate.
Will you do it for an hour with your kids? For a week? Is it a semester long time investment?
If you can’t pick an amount of time, do NOT do it.
We like to pretend that we can do things indefinitely. This causes resistance because everything we decide to do has something that is hard. We can't get out of the hard part.
When things are hard, part of your brain will want to do nothing other than eat a snack, get on your phone, or take a nap.
(Brains like to rebel like angst filled teenagers.)
Choosing a timeline helps eliminate the need for rebellion. Since you’ll know that this decision is only temporary, and that you’ll get to re-evaluate in the future, you can settle down and go all in right now.
Once you’ve answered these questions, you are ready to make a decision.
Once you do, write down 4 things:
Then go all in! It's that simple.
If you have questions about how to implement this process, I would love to help you make any decision weighing on you. I offer free mini coaching sessions. It’s like meeting a friend for lunch because we chat and have fun, but I will teach you skills that can help you make real progress, so it's even better. Schedule one today by clicking here.
I’ll see you soon.