You know how your children can get totally absorbed in what they’re doing so that the hours pass like minutes? Whether it’s making complex Lego creations or writing fan fiction or putting together cosplay ensembles or drawing pictures, they’re purely—and happily absorbed—in their work. You can borrow a little of that happiness-boosting power for yourself by remembering the obsessive activities of your own childhood.
Did you spend hours writing stories? Or exploring the woods? Or taking photographs? It’s probably not hard to think of the things that fueled your passions during childhood—you know, the things that you put aside for a sensible, career-focused college major or the more practical work of adulthood? So often, we lose track of the things we really love because the rest of life gets in the way, but going back to those joyful basics can be a key to opening up a happier now.
Take some time this week to think about what you really loved as a kid, whether it was designing fabulous fashion doll outfits, or reading every mythology book on your library’s shelves, or stargazing at night—focus on the thing that you could do for hours without even noticing the time passing, and start looking for ways to get that back in your life. My friend Liz loved photography and reignited her passion by committing to posting one photo on Instagram every day for a year. If you loved writing, start a blog or write down the bedtime stories your kids are always asking you to make up. If you loved fashion, take a sewing class or learn how to knit. If you loved building, buy your own set of Legos. Don’t worry about how these things will translate into anything else—avoid worrying about what’s useful or practical or a priority in your homeschool life, and just concentrate on how to do what you really love a couple of times a week. Chances are, your newfound passion will inspire your homeschool in ways you couldn’t have imagined, but whether it affects your homeschool or not, it will boost your personal happiness to make something you love part of your life. And trust me, a happier you means a happier homeschool for all.