Building Better Work-Life Balance as a Substitute

As a substitute, there are days–and even weeks–when you don’t know whether you’ll be working or not. Since teachers can’t always schedule concerns like illness, you may get last-minute calls that interrupt your plans for the day, leaving you scrambling off to work no matter what you had going on, simply because you can’t afford to miss an opportunity to work. Building work-life balance, therefore, can be a challenge. By following these strategies, you can help build better balance between your career and your regular life.

Set boundaries with your schools. Are there days when you simply aren’t available to work? Are there classes that you really don’t want to sub in? As you build a stronger relationship with the schools where you work most often, they’ll respect those boundaries–and respect you for being willing to set them.

Set boundaries for yourself. There are days when you can drop your plans and head in to work at the drop of a hat. There are also days when you simply can’t–and you shouldn’t be expected to. While it’s important to be available to the schools where you wish to work–and repeatedly turning down those schools may decrease future opportunities–you also need to know where to set your personal boundaries regarding which days you can work and which days you can’t.

Build a life outside of work. It can be difficult to develop relationships with your colleagues when you never know where you’ll be working or you’re in a different part of the building every day. Building a life outside of work, complete with friends, hobbies, and activities, is one of the most effective ways to improve work-life balance.

Know when to turn it off. Most teachers struggle with bringing work home–and substitutes, who need to have plans in place for classrooms that might not have sub plans and materials to provide for students, are no exception. It’s important, however, to know when it’s time to stop working. Set specific work hours for yourself, and when they’re over, turn back to the things you’d rather be doing! You’ll quickly discover that this is more effective than constantly working and helps you keep perspective on your job.

Your job is important, especially if you love what you do and want a better interaction with the students and schools you work with. By building work-life balance, you’ll be able to improve your odds of job and life success. Want to learn more about finding those important jobs as a sub? Contact us today to learn how we can help.

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