As an educator, our job asks us to be nurturing, flexible and energetic. A great role model that helps develop our students to learn and perform at their full potential. These daily challenges often result in burn out from workplace stress. Being stretched to their limits can have a negative impact on both physical and mental wellbeing.
Educators face high demands in managing disruptive classroom behaviors, challenging workloads, lower wages, and lack of professional recognition. It all begins with feeling tired, stressed, and overwhelmed. When we’re under stress we often become insensitive and unresponsive to children’s needs. So by lowering stress, educators can feel more positive, energetic and overcome negative issues or situations. Stress often leads to major health consequences such as chronic illnesses; obesity, headaches and depression, to name a few. It is important to recognise signals of stress and take proper steps to purposeful self-care strategies.
Balancing work and life, easier said than done. Take a look at how you can maximize your time and energy by reevaluating your needs. And for starters, take time out for yourself. Develop healthy habits for wellbeing such as eating well, exercising, or meditation. Surround yourself with support by meeting friends or family and talk with colleagues that understand your position.
WORDPIE picks on being healthy:
1. Engage in physical activity. Regular physical activity can relieve tension in the body and mind. We suggest walking, swimming, biking or dancing.
2. Laugh. Laughter makes you feel good! There’s a sort of freedom that comes from laughing out loud at a joke or a movie. Let go and laugh at yourself too!
3. Slow down. If you take some effort planning ahead, you won’t feel like you’re in such a rush all the time. Pace yourself.
4. Say ‘bye bye’ to bad habits. Too much of anything isn’t good, so if you do own bad habits try to do them in moderation. That includes caffeine, alcohol, cigarettes and biting your nails.
5. Sleep. We understand those whose creativity blooms in the wee hours of the night. But getting more hours of rest really does wonders to reduce stress and depression. You may find physical activity improves the quality of sleep.
6. Connect. Stay in touch or get your daily dose of friendship. Call your friends and family to share your feelings, what’s going on in your life, or what’s in theirs. Talking and listening both keep you connected.
7. Accept. And let go of the things that you cannot change. This is the hardest one of all but once you can it opens up more room in your mind and heart for better things in the world. Such as future goals, important tasks, and maybe even love.
It’s ironic how educators are required to care so much for others and in doing so, end up with less time to nurture their own wellbeing. Don’t live to work. Stop over-exerting your time and energy and start changing something in your routine today. And finally, let’s appreciate and celebrate our educators, they certainly do it for us!