Administration Self Care at Camp

It’s the most stressful time of the year

Written by Patti

This is how I feel at the moment.

To be honest, this is how I feel every year at this time. It doesn’t seem to matter how much I try to do in advance, it never fails that April and May are just… bonkers!

It feels like I have hundreds of things on my To Do list, and dozens of them are super, ultra, major, high importance. And time just keeps on moving forward – camp is sort of like the theatre, regardless of whether you’re ready or not, the show must go on. The campers are going to show up with their suitcases and high expectations and we have to be able to deliver. 

And life keeps happening (so to speak… ) sometimes things happen where I have to take a step back and make time for family and loved ones, but the work stuff doesn’t go away. It just sits, and waits, and grows. 

Even though some of my favourite things take place during this time of year like getting to know new staff hires, getting ready for staff development week, hyping up camp for campers and returning staff – it’s also by far the most stressful time of year too.

And unfortunately this little blog, that I really enjoy writing, always ends up taking a back seat to the super, ultra, major, high importance things on my list, and to my family obligations. So I’m sorry for that, I have about 5 or 6 posts that just aren’t quite ready to share yet, but are in the works (and have been for a while… hahaha… sorry)

 

Unfortunately this is not one of those times where I might have a bit of advice about something I’ve learned from these situations in the past. This is just me… venting? complaining? making excuses? stating facts? All of the above, I guess.

All I know is that this is my hardest time of year every year, and if you’re feeling it too – I sympathize. 

And if you have any tips or suggestions, feel free to share them in the comment section below, or just vent, that works too.

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4 Comments

  • I feel ya! When I was in camping 4 years ago, this was crunch time and I always beat myself up about wasting all winter when I should have been getting this stuff done.
    Because you asked for some advice, here’s what I do when the stressed out crazies hit: Carve out 30 minutes-1hour to sit down with paper and pencil. Write everything down. Get it all out. Everything on the to do list, any feelings that need to be written down, everything. Take a deep breath and look at the list. What must be done by you? What can you delegate? (Get creative and call on veteran staff if you need to-they’re excited for camp and probably want to help.) Is there anything on the list that you need to let go of and say not this year?
    Lastly, identify the “frogs” that need to be eaten. What tasks have you been putting off that are imperative to the success of your summer? Tackle one or two of these a day, in the morning when you are fresh and before you even open your email. It’s about more than checking off your hundreds of to-do’s. It’s about doing the tasks that really make a difference to the success of your summer program.

    • Thanks so much Sara. I really appreciate your great advice! I’ll be sure to try to “eat some frogs” this week.
      So now that you’re no longer working in camping, what keeps you busy these days? (besides offering awesome advice to struggling directors 🙂 )

      • I work in Student Life at a community college, managing student clubs and advising the leadership society. I’m starting a blog to help camp people be awesome and I’d like to offer coaching as well to help people work through problems with camp. Sometimes we just need an objective person to listen and help figure out the next steps.

        • Sorry for the late reply Sara, I’m just seeing this note now. That’s awesome that you’re giving back to the camping community. Perhaps we can work together on something in the near future. 🙂

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