432 | Time to Recharge! (Sean Allen)

432 | Time to Recharge! (Sean Allen)

Show Notes:

About Sean

Sean Allen is the founder of The Well Ordered Homeschool, husband to his beautiful bride Caroline and a proud father of eight. He has a bachelor of fine arts in graphic design and is passionate about creating materials to assist parents in the incredibly challenging, yet surpassingly beautiful, work of schooling and training their children at home.


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Show Transcript:

Sean Allen Hello. Welcome to the Homeschool Solutions Show. My name is Sean Allen and I am one of the many hosts here on the podcast. Since you're listening to this, I'm guessing you already know that homeschooling is both incredibly challenging and incredibly beautiful. Every week we're here doing a little guidance, some helpful counsel, and a whole lot of encouragement your way as you navigate this busy, yet blessed journey of educating your children at home. Now, even though the show is called Homeschool Solutions, it should come as no surprise to you that we do not have the answer to every homeschool related question. But if you come away with nothing else, our hope is that today's episode will point you to Jesus Christ and that you will seek His counsel as you train your children in the way they should go.

Here's a riddle for you parents: Homeschoolers love them, enemies of freedom hate them. What are they? It's the Tuttle Twins books. With millions of copies sold, the Tuttle Twins helps you teach your kids about entrepreneurship, personal responsibility, the Golden Rule, and more. Get a discounted set of books with free workbooks—that's right, free workbooks—today at TuttleTwins.com/homeschool. That's TuttleTwins.com/homeschool. And now on to today's show.

Well, hello everyone. Welcome back to the podcast. Thank you for joining me today. How are you all doing? How's it going out there? Good? I heard somebody say "good." No, no. Obviously not. That's impossible. I didn't hear anybody say "good." I'm assuming that a number of you are doing well, and that's wonderful. I hope that's the case. Some of you are just so-so. And there's a few of you (I hope it's a few) that are not doing that great. And you're coming to the podcast and you're hoping for something. Hoping for something. Just a little glimmer of hope. Well, I can't guarantee that I'm going to give that to you. That doesn't really... It doesn't come from me anyway, you know? If you receive that glimmer of hope from this episode or any other episode, and I think all of the other ladies, contributors to this podcast will tell you the same thing, that's not coming from us. It's coming from above, through us, if God is gracious enough to use us in that way.

But today, I do think I have something that can be directed to all three of you out there. And by three of you, I don't mean literally three people. I hope there's more than three people listening to this. You know what? What does it matter if it is three people and one of them is my mother? I don't know. And that's okay. What I mean is the three categories: those of you who are doing great, those of you are just doing so-so, and those of you who are struggling right now, I think I have something that applies to all three of you.

But before we get to that, a little update on things on our end. At the time of the recording of this podcast, we're about to head out to go to California, our second to last GHC convention. It is a trip, folks. It is a trip. It's 24 hours straight, so of course that's impossible. Out to California, there are many stops along the way for various different reasons. And it works out. It's probably going to be like 30 hours, all told. And that's a trip. It's a very pretty trip. You know, you get to see... You know, it's different out west. We live in the Midwest. And so we see lots of things as we travel out there that we don't often get to see, so that's nice. And, you know, every time I go out to California, at the conclusion of the convention and particularly on the way back, I'm thinking to myself, I don't think I'm going to do this next year because it just goes on and on. The drive goes on and on and on. Love the convention out there, love going to Ontario and seeing the people out there, and it's beautiful, and all of those sorts of things. But it's just a long drive, you know, and we hook up to a trailer and pull all of our stuff out there, and I feel privileged to be able to do it. But you're tired at the end and I'm thinking, I don't know if we're going to do this next year, and then a year passes and we're excited. So that's where we are right now. We're just days away from leaving for that. We're excited. Caroline is not going to make it to this one either, unfortunately, but she is coming to Texas. That's the plan, at least. So our last GHC convention of the year will be at Texas at Kalahari (I don't know if I'm pronouncing that correctly) and we're looking forward to that, too.

So if you're going to be in Texas at the Texas convention, guess what? You get to see Lillian or you have the opportunity to see Lillian if you stop by our booth. And that's our sweet, sweet newest little baby. And, you know, the people who own and operate GHC, they're such wonderful people, and they're always very excited to see our children and they're very gracious about that. And so they want to see Lillian because she just... I mean, who wouldn't? My goodness, she's just the sweetest, sweetest, most precious little thing. You all know what I'm talking about. Oh my goodness, I don't know. I don't know what we're going to do. I don't know if this is our last one or not. And I feel a tangent coming on. I don't know if this... I don't know. We've talked about it being, before she was born and right after she was born, Caroline was pretty much like, "I think this is it," and that's totally understandable. Totally understandable. She has to go through so much more than what I do. But I was always like, "Oh, let's give it some time here." She's never quite been like this. You give her a few days and she's like, "Let's have another." But this one is, you know, we're getting older as far as parents are concerned. And, you know, nine is a lot by any measure, I would say. There's people out there with many more, but there's different considerations now.

And so we're talking about this and I just... Oh, I'd be sad. To think that we wouldn't be able to have a little baby in our lives, you know. I'm just sad thinking about it. I don't know. I don't know what is better than having a little baby in the house. There's just few things. I don't know that you could point to many things. And Lillian is just so unspeakably beautiful and precious and innocent and pure, and I just don't have words. And I'm so thankful. And, you know, I've been thinking about this a little bit here lately — this is definitely a tangent. This is not what I was wanting to talk to you about today — I still haven't fully got my mind around this yet, but man. I feel differently about Lillian than I did about, say, our first born. And I don't mean that in a negative sense. Your firstborn is your firstborn and he or she came for a reason in that particular order at that particular time. And we all know that that's unique, obviously. You know, there aren't other children in the house, you have no experience being a parent (or very little experience), you do not know or you cannot understand or comprehend the demands that that is going to place on your time or your store of emotions and all these sorts of things and what that's going to do to you, how you're going to react to that. So that's very special and unique and God knows how to work all of that out. And so why he sent the one that he sent you first, there's all kinds of just wonderful reasons behind that and wisdom. But then you get to number nine like we have, and in our case, I would say it's nine. And that's another humbling, sobering thing I would say is that these feelings that I have for Lillian and the perspectives that I have with her has not arrived until this time.

And I wonder about that. I wonder, what does that mean? And I say this at talks sometimes: children seem to be pre-wired or are very capable in and of themselves in peculiar ways, to smash every vestige of selfishness that exists in you. That's part of the reason why they're here, I think. There's many other reasons, but that's one of them. Or that's the experience that I've had. Now, you don't have to submit yourself to that process. I mean, they're going to work on you. And I have to believe that it is a very strange parent indeed who is more selfish at the conclusion of their parenting journey than they were at the start. But nevertheless, I feel less selfish — still selfish and it pains me to say that — but I can look back and I can see in very tangible ways, ways that I can perceive, that I'm less selfish. But I say this at talks, like maybe that means I'm an extremely selfish person because I have nine. It's possible. It's very possible.

And also this perspective that I have with Lillian, I think, that I didn't feel quite the same way about the other eight. And I'm not trying to suggest that I love them any less, I don't. But it's different this time, and I can't put that in the words. I'm thinking about it. But I love her so much. What is it? I have more perspective, as I've said. I have more respect for her. I have more patience. Like with your other... And this just might be me. I know I'm talking to a lot of moms out there, and this might appall you, but with the other children that I've had, they're so special and it's so wonderful to hold them, but there comes a point at which, like, I'm done holding you right now and I've got other things to do, and I don't feel bad about that at the time. It's like, I'm done now. And with Lillian, it's hard to let her go. Now, is that a reflection on me? Like it took you nine children to get to that point? I don't know. Here I am talking out loud. I'm kind of baring my soul. And some of you might think that's terrible and some of you, I don't know, maybe you do understand what I'm saying. And I'm more busy — way, way, way more busy than I was when we had our first born or second or third or any of the ones after, and I'm having a harder time letting her go. I think that's wonderful. I'm so glad about that. Actually. And it's genuine. Like when we go to California, I'm going to miss her so much. It's not that I wouldn't have missed the other children. Please do not make me an offender for a word. I absolutely would miss them. This feels different. Maybe it feels like we're getting... This could be the end of the line or near the end of the line and you're like, oh my goodness, this might be it. And you don't want that to slip through your fingers.

So anyway, I'm still thinking about that. I'm just expressing to you some of the feelings that have been coursing through my heart here the last six, seven, eight weeks since she's been born. It's going by so fast already, and I don't know how you could love another human being more than what we love her. Thank you, God for these little babies. So, like I said, this is not what I wanted to talk to you about today. What I want to talk to you about today is I want to give you permission. It's nice to be able to hear somebody else talk about something, and it just gives you permission to do something. You don't need my permission, obviously. I mean, what am I to you? Nothing. You will listen to me on occasion, or maybe this is your first time, or it doesn't really matter. You get as much permission from me as you allow me to give you is how this works. But I have no authority over your life. I'm not an important person in your life. I'm not a family member or anything like that. But nevertheless, sometimes you hear things from other people and you were already thinking it, but you just needed to hear... You needed an added witness. You needed an "amen" added, to that direction that you kind of felt you were being tugged in in your heart.

Well, I'm just going to put it to you very simply: you need time for yourself. Okay? Let me say it again. You need time for yourself and you need to be deliberate about it. Please. This is not a one time thing — this is a deliberate, pre-planned, scheduled routine thing. There are many different ways in which this can be broken down. First of all, this time for yourself, it needs to take place on a daily basis. Okay? That's baseline time for yourself. Now, I'm getting ahead of myself. What you're going to find is, if all you do is take time for yourself on a daily basis, it's probably not enough. Okay? And we're going to look at this from the perspective of we're just going to compare you, and myself for that matter, to a battery. You've got a battery. Have you ever felt like that? Like you've got a battery? And at the end of the day, you're just 5%. Or you got that little charge icon that's in your battery just flashing. That's where you're at at the end of the day and I've got to recharge it. How do you do that? Well, you take time for yourself maybe? That's another kind of time that we're going to talk about here in just a minute. And you go to sleep, you go to bed and the batteries are filling up. So your batteries charging throughout the night, you're filling up, you get up in the morning and you feel better. The question is like, what's your percentage? Where are you at? You probably or not, most likely, probably not in 100% when you wake up in the morning. There's a lot of different factors that go into that. There's no way for me to go through all of those different factors. I have no idea what you're up against or what you're struggling with and some things are just... It's unavoidable. Like, it's a constant drain on your battery.

So you might be fighting a losing battle. Maybe you're not getting enough sleep. Is that possible? How many hours are you sleeping anyway? If you've got a little one like us, you know, it's not a lot. I have been working so hard on some new products and getting ready for these conventions and everything. The last two nights, one night I was up 'til 4 a.m. working on some stuff, and the next night it was 3 a.m.. And I don't know what tonight's going to be. There are just so many things. Well guess what? Your battery is not running at full capacity if you do that for very long. You know, so how many hours are you getting? You got to get back to getting sleep, that could be a help. You get up in the morning, maybe you feel like you're at 75%. 80%, I don't know. What is it? Maybe it's 65%. That's not good. Can you run the whole day on 65%? Just think about your phone for a little bit. You wake up in the morning, you see your phone on 65%. Are you going to make it to the end of the day? Probably not. Well, you're no different. You're waking up at 65%, at the end of the day... You know, mom, dad, they might just be, like, short circuiting on the couch. I don't know. You need more than that.

So you get up in the morning, and you have some devotion time. Hopefully. That would be nice. Is it five minutes? Is it ten minutes? Some people are an hour. I don't know, have something. That's also going to help. That can do wonders right there. You might jump another 20% just right there by having quiet time alone with your heavenly father. So you need that time for yourself. That's the daily time for yourself. Okay? I'm going to leave off the nighttime stuff where... Or maybe it's even throughout the day, which, by the way, I wouldn't recommend that. You're stealing away to get a little social media hit here and there. You're spending 15, 20, 30 minutes in the bathroom on your phone and to you, that's like recharge time. That is low return recharge time. I'm not saying that your percentages won't go up a little bit. There is also the possibility, and I want to suggest to you, that that time is actually draining on your battery as well. Yeah, isn't that a thought? And you thought, I have just got to decompress here and I've got to go do something that I want to do. And it might be helpful. You might want to examine that though, that might be also draining on your battery. Or it might be like rewriting the code (this is getting a little deep isn't it?) on how your battery operates and that your battery only is serviceable towards tasks that meet certain ends. What do I mean by that?

So you're in the middle of the day spending 10,15, 20, 30, however many minutes or an hour or more on pursuits or things that you like to look at and do, let's just say social media. And when you break that spell or something comes along and breaks that spell and you realize, you know what, I don't have the heart for this anymore. That's what I mean: your battery is dedicated towards other pursuits. And when your children are there, oh, we got to keep doing the school or oh, we've got to deal with this meltdown or... You know what? I don't even know if I care anymore. I just don't have the care that I used to have for these necessary pursuits. I would much rather be doing whatever. And so you got to be thinking about that. Maybe it's not charging your battery, maybe it's draining your battery. So you know, the night time — let's watch a movie, let's watch a TV show. I don't know, we'll leave that up to you. It's something worth exploring though. Is it making you feel better? Is it helping you? Do you really think that that is a source of strength when you go into your new day? It might not be. Might not be.

So when I'm talking about time for yourself, I'm talking about that time in the morning for the devotions. Now, that's not the only time. Let's say you started the day at 65, 70%. And your devotions, what? Added 10, 15, 20%? We're still not at 100%, folks. And over time, if you get hit with a processor intensive task, so to speak — you know, you've got a problem child, you've got a family dilemma, you've got debts, you've got bills, you've got you know, whatever it is — and something like that hits, and it's putting a heavier load on your battery than what it would generally be accustomed to, well, now you're you're dealing with diminishing returns, aren't you? Okay? You're dealing with diminishing returns, and if you operate under those conditions for an extended period of time, you know what else happens to your battery? We have iPhones, so. Yeah, we're blue bubble snobs. And, you know, you can go into settings (I'm sure Android's the same way, or Google phones or whatever they are) and you can look at your battery capacity. Like, you know, what's that running at? You bought the phone, I suppose presumably it was 100%. Over time, your battery performance degrades and so it's like, oh, my battery is operating at 85% capacity. Well, 100% of 85% capacity is not the same as 100% of 100% capacity. Does that make sense? And so you're operating under less than optimal conditions. It's placing a greater strain on your "system" (we're just using this as an analogy here) and what you're finding is, is that your battery capacity is degrading over time. You are not the person that you used to be or that you could be.

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Now, thankfully in human terms, can our battery capacity degrade? Absolutely. Can we add to or increase our battery capacity? Yes. That's not true when it comes to phones. Gradually it's just going to wear out and you have to put a new battery in. Well, I think that God is able to add percentage points over time if we're doing this right. So we're talking about the daily time for yourself. You need that. You need sleep. Okay, please hear me: you need sleep. We all need sleep. This is coming from the guy who was up at 4 a.m. and 3 a.m. the last two nights. Okay? I don't know that I have a lot of moral authority here, but I know it's true. You know it's true: you need sleep. You can't be running on fumes all the time. That's the daily thing.

Now, I also want to say you need more than daily time for yourself. You need, I don't know, monthly? Quarterly? See, people in business do this all the time. They take a hiatus, they take a vacation. You know, companies build this into their employees work schedules because, you know, "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy." And so are they doing this to be nice? No, they're doing this for productivity. Because if you get burnt out, what good are you to them? And the same is true of your children. If you get burnt out, what good are you to them? You're less good. That doesn't mean that you're not good, it just means that you're less good than you could be. You're 85% good. You're 65% good. Now 100% of 65%, hey, we'll take it. But you could be 100% of 85, 100% of 90. 100 for 100. Wouldn't that be amazing? So I mean, few of us operate at that level. I know that I don't. But you want the highest capacity possible. How do you do that? You got to plug in. You got to plug in.

If you had to write down on a piece of paper (and you might do this, it would be an excellent exercise) just draw a little battery icon. Okay? Draw a little battery icon and then — it's simple. It's a rectangle with a little nub on the end. Right? — and then I want you to draw the level. What is the level? Where does the line go in the battery indicator? Is it near the front? It's in the middle? Is at the very bottom? You know when your battery thing flashes red? That means you've got to plug in. And for some people, plugging in is progress. Did you hear what I said there? For some people, plugging in is progress. They're operating at like 15% capacity. It doesn't take very long to charge to 15% capacity, but you are not very effective. And so it doesn't take much time. Have you ever felt like this: you get up in the morning, "Okay, it's a new day. We're going to go at this again. We can do this. We can do this." And the first thing that hits, "I'm done. I can't take this anymore. We're already back there. The day has just started." I'm in a bad place almost instantly. That means you have low capacity.

Now, you thought you were fully charged. Like, I'm ready to go. Here we go. And then, boom, the first thing hits, it's just drained. Depleted. And you've got that little flashing red icon. Well, for some people, plugging in is progress. You don't even plug in. You've got to plug in. When you see the status indicator on your screen, that pops up when you plug in and it shows the battery and it shows that it's red, that's progress. Hey, what else does it show? It shows that little lightning icon. Hey we're charging. We're charging. That's good. Some of you just need to charge. You won't even charge. You're thinking, I don't have time for this. I don't have time to charge. All I have time for is, you know, some me time in the evening, up late, go to bed, sleep for a few hours — four, five, six hours. That's not enough. It's not enough for what you're doing because you need a good attitude. You need joy. You need cheerfulness. You need a smile on your face, and you need to mean it. Your children need to see that. They can't see you tired and worn out and beat down all the time. Do they need to see that sometimes? Yes, because that's real life, but if they're seeing that all the time, what kind of an inspiration is that for them for the future? Are they going to want to follow or pursue the same path that you're walking? You know, when it comes right down to it and they get married and they start a family of their own and they're like, do we want to homeschool? Okay, let's rehearse this in our minds. Well, the only experience that I can draw from is that of my mother's, and I'm thinking back... Nope. Nope. Actually, no. No, don't want to do that. I'm not putting myself through what she went through. Now, hopefully if they've got some perspective, they might be able to put the pieces together and understand why the experience was that way and they could find workarounds, you know, to get there. But we don't want to make it hard on them. Right? So you've got to plug in. You've got to charge. You've got to do that daily. Okay? And every day that you don't do that, just understand, it's unavoidable — you have reduced capacity. Or you didn't even charge to full, whatever your capacity is.

So draw a full battery icon. This is what I should have told you to do. Draw a full battery icon. Draw what your capacity is. So draw a line. That's what your capacity is. So in other words, 80% of this battery’s usable, the rest of it is gone right now. And then draw what your charge level is right now when you're listening to this. And you might keep that up every now and then. Do it in the morning. Do it in the middle of the day. Do it at night. And give an honest assessment. If you have to and you really think you've got a good handle on this, take that piece of paper, show it to your husband. Put it in his face. Say, "Honey, this is where I'm at right now. I'm at 25%." Or call him up, "I'm staring at my battery indicator, it's just this little exercise that I'm doing. I drew a line, I'm at 35%, and it is 10:30 a.m. in the morning. It's not good. It's not good. Please, what can we do about this?" Okay? What can you do about that? You need to be deliberate. Maybe you take a weekly... I don't know. What do you need to charge? That's the other thing: how long does it take for your battery to charge? You know, I don't want to belabor this point, but this is the best way that I thought of to convey this to you.

You know, there's a lot of talk now about electric vehicles, and I don't understand all of the jargon, but not all electric vehicles charge at the same rate. There's different technologies out there, and there's different wattages and all these different things. I'm probably messing this up, but, you know, some, like the older ones, charge much more slowly. They don't even have the capability of charging at some of the higher rates. They can't handle the electrons, so to speak. And now the newer ones that they're coming out with, they can charge much more quickly. You plug in and you can get, you know, 80% of your mileage within 20 minutes or whatever. It's going faster. So what is the rate at which your battery charges? How long does it take for your battery to charge? And if you don't do this very often, if you're not accustomed to taking time for yourself... And I know that sounds selfish. It's just like, I don't have time for myself. It's not about me. Well, no, that's not the point. This isn't about you. It really is about your children. And that's why you're taking time for yourself, for them. Because you want the most capacity possible, right? And you want to set a good example for them so that they can continue in this same way. Right?

Again, if you're not accustomed to this and let's say you take a day off, "All right, I'm finally going to do it. We're taking a day off." And then you get to the end of the day. You wake up the next day and you're like, "I feel a little better. But I don't feel as good as I should. And this charge that I received or that I took from that hiatus is not going to be enough." Well, for people like that, that means that you haven't charged in a very long time. And you need more time. The day that you took off might actually be the equivalent in terms of, you know, phone performance or car performance, really all that was, was you plugged in. Right? You plugged in and you know your cells are so drained that it's taking you a very long time to get back up to max capacity, and you need more than one day, folks. It's okay. So you need a day this month and you need a day next month and the month after that. Or maybe you need a week every quarter. I don't know. What's so bad about that?

Now, you've got to be deliberate, though. You can't just say, "Well, we're going to randomly take a week off. Let's make it this week." No, you have got to make plans. I'm going to take three days. And it doesn't have to all be about homeschooling, obviously. "We're just going to take three days. We're going to go to a hotel, we're gonna go find a Airbnb or whatever, and I'm going to do some lesson planning. I'm going to do some reading. I'm going to do some sleeping. We're going to do some cooking, whatever, and we're going to I need these three days." I do it at the beginning of the school year, I do it in the middle of the school year, I do it at the end of the school year, and then we have a week long vacation in the summer or whatever. That's what I need. That's what it takes for me. And I know, I've tried this many times. That's what charges my battery.

You need to be deliberate. You need to be thoughtful about this. And if anybody out there is listening to this and you're not doing anything... Hmhm. Well, if you're one of those people who says, "Well, I don't need to do anything," I'm not sure that you are of this earth. I don't know, that's strange to me. Maybe it's true. Maybe it's true. But the thing that I know about homeschooling, and raising children in particular is that it is an inherently selfless endeavor. Here's something else that I know — that this inherently selfless endeavor is generally performed by selfish beings. And so there is a great wrestle there between the endeavor and the one carrying out the endeavor. And that being true, it probably means that it's placing a strain on you, however small or great, and you almost certainly need charged. So it's nice to say things like, "I don't need breaks. I don't need this time. I don't need this time away or time off or anything." It's nice to say those things, but it's almost certainly not true. And if you feel guilty about it, like, well, we're not going to do any vacation stuff and we're not going to do any fun things. Okay, well, fine, just step away and do lesson planning all weekend, I don't know. If that makes you feel better. That is, you know, that's useful. That's pragmatic.

But here I am, I'm really trying... I'm really working on you here. I'm trying to convince you: you need time. And it's going to look different for all kinds of people. And it really, you know, what that amounts to is that we're all dealing with different situations, and there are different levels of strain placed on our systems. And some of us are, you know, more capable of handling those strengths and others. And so what does it matter? You're dealing with your circumstances and you're dealing with your trials and who's to say that anybody could do that better than what you're doing? I don't know. Your situation is very unique. Your children are unique. You're unique. You live in a unique locale at a unique time and so on and so forth. And so who's to say? You're dealing with it the way that you're dealing with it? And so that being the case, you need to take a unique approach to, how much time do I need and when do I need it?

But I will say, I will be very hard-nosed about this: you need it regularly. You need it at intervals. It's not a "Oh, I feel myself, I'm going there again. I'm crashing. Time to charge." Nope, that's too late. That's what you want to avoid. You don't have time? You don't have time for this? Do you have time to crash? Do you have time to endure the long, arduous, slow grind of difficulty and of days in which you feel as if you were at variance with your own flesh and blood? Do you have time for that? What do I mean by that last statement? I mean, you feel as if you're about to break down, "I don't know if I could do this anymore. I can't spend one more day in this house with this child," kind of place. Do you have time for that? Did you plan for that? I bet you didn't. That's probably because you have not made plans for yourself so that you can be fully charged. And you can also be clear headed about how to deal with that problem child. I don't like the term problem child, but we have children and they present problems, don't they

So, I'm sure you all know this too: like you step away for a little bit... Well, here, just as a very small example, how many times have you felt very low at the end of the day? It's night time, you're getting everybody to bed, you're getting ready for bed yourself, and you've got all these stresses and strains just weighing on you, just attacking your mind: Oh, this is bad and that's bad, and the other is bad, and I don't see any way out. I don't know what we're going to do. Woe is me. I've been there many, many, many times. You go to sleep, you wake up in the morning and it's almost like, I feel so much better. Whoa. Where did all that go? The seeming reality of the sky falling at night just vanished, didn't it? Because you took time away. And it changes your perspective. Like the clouds just dissipate. Where did they go? Nobody knows. It's like it's in your head and you can see more clearly. And I can almost promise you, if you're deliberate about this and you step away for a time, get out of your house, get away from your children for a little bit. And I'm sure the devil comes along and he's like, "Oh, you want to get away from your children? You must be a terrible mom. You must be a terrible dad. What's wrong with you? Why would you ever want to get away from your children?" I want to get away from my children for my children. So that I can be a better mother or father to my children. And also because I don't trust myself. I don't trust that I have the best judgment right now. And I'm going to step away, I'm going to take some time away with my husband. Maybe you take a weekend with some friends or something, you go to a homeschool convention — I know I've plugged that many times, but this can really change your perspective — you go listen to some wonderful speakers, you take three days away, you tour the convention hall, you go out to eat. You know, all these different things. It's a different environment. You've removed yourself from the thing that is partially responsible for dragging you down and it's like a whole new world. You come back, you're revivified. You are re-energized. You are ready to recommit. This is not about giving up. You were never about that. Nobody's suggesting that you are. But it's, like, you feel so much better. And your children are probably whispering to each other, you know, or they're going to their room, like, "Wow, Mom. She's really upbeat, isn't she?" Well, that's what you want. Isn't that what you want them to say? Don't you want them to be amazed? Like, "Wow, mom, is just... This is great. This is wonderful. I'm really enjoying this." Because here's the sad thing is, is that your mood affects their mood. Your mood is their mood probably is what the case is. And the lower you are, the lower they are. And it's hard to recharge when you're in a situation like that.

So I have probably spent too much time on this. I think I've spent more time on it because I get the sense that some of you out there are not convinced. And it's very hard. I know some of you people. Not personally. Well, I've met some of you. But I just know that there are those of you out there that exist who are very stubborn. You're very hard headed about this, and to be fair, you don't feel right about it. You feel guilty about it. Like, "You want me to do what? How often? Well, that's just selfish. I don't know if I can justify that." Well, take a look at your home. How are things? How's it going? Do you have a situation that's just totally got you stumped? Do you feel as if you're kind of on a downward slide? Look at your children. Look them in the face. I'm here to tell you this will bless them. Do you want to bless them? Yes you do. We know the answer to that. So do them a favor by doing yourself a favor: take some time. Deliberately and at intervals. Plan it. Do it. Don't miss it. Don't skip it. This should be a non-negotiable thing and your children will be so blessed. Will they have less time with you? Well, yeah, technically. Less time with you, but the time that they do have, well, we could also apply this same analogy to that. The time that you have with them is now at 90% capacity, whereas before was 65. 100% presentness of you at 65% is not nearly as good as 100% presentness at 90%. I hope that's not too confusing to you, I hope you understand what I'm saying there. Redeem the time.

So, you can do it. I know you can do it. I know it's also hard, but you heard it from me: run this by you're your husband, or if you are husband listening to this, run this by your wife. Talk to them about it. And there's probably a good chance that they will agree that you need this. And it'll just be good for the two of you. You know, I'm not even talking about marriage here. We're just talking about homeschooling. This is the Homeschool Solutions Podcast, not the Marriage Solutions podcast. But this could also help in your marriage too. Be good to spend some time together. So, my phone is beeping and ringing and all kinds of things. That's probably my cue to wrap this up. So thank you very much for your time, for listening to me today. I hope that you will take some time for yourself, and that it will be a great blessing to you and to your home. Yeah, I can't say enough about it. But I have said enough, so that's why I'm stopping. So have a good day and we will talk to you again very soon. Bye bye.

Thank you for joining us this week on the Homeschool Solutions Show. You can find show notes and links to all the resources mentioned at Homeschooling.mom. Don't forget to check out my friends at Medi-Share because you deserve health care you can trust. To learn more about Medi-Share and why over 400,000 Christians have made the switch, go to GreatHomeschoolConventions.com/Medi-Share. That's GreatHomeschoolConventions.com/Medi-Share. If you haven't already, please subscribe to the podcast. And while you're there, leave us a review. Tell us what you love about the show. This will help other homeschooling parents like you get connected to our community. And finally, tag us on Instagram @homeschooling.mom to let us know what you thought of today's episode. Have you joined us at one of the Great Homeschool Conventions? The Great Homeschool Conventions are the Homeschooling events of the year offering outstanding speakers, hundreds of workshops covering today's top parenting and homeschooling topic, and the largest homeschool curriculum exhibit halls in the US. Find out more at GreatHomeschoolConventions.com. I'll be there. I hope to see you there too.

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