In a previous post about teacher well-being, we looked at how schools can look after their teachers. Teacher well-being has become an increasingly hot topic that needs to be addressed by all, and when I say by all I mean just that. Even the teachers themselves. In this article we look at how teachers can look after their own well-being without relying solely on their school setting. Teachers, read on to to find out how you can do this…
This may sound selfish to some but it’s really not. You need to make sure you put your self first and prioritise things that are good for you so that you can look after your mental health. In order for you to be able to provide for the educational needs of children, you must above all, be healthy, both physically and mentally.
Do what relaxes you:
Make a pact with yourself that you will do something that relaxes you, if not every day, most days of the week. Whether that is exercising, reading a book or even watching TV, make sure you allow yourself time to do it. The more time you allow for yourself to relax the better you will be able to handle the pressure when you hit the crunch.
Mental health and physical well-being:
These two usually go hand in hand, as seen in the famous ancient Greek saying, “Νους υγιή εν σώματι υγιή” which means a healthy mind is found in a healthy body. Eat well, exercise and look after yourself. Teachers are by default such giving people, that many times they feel guilty if they look after themselves during and during the academic year, they allow it to slip. Most often than not, teachers tend to neglect themselves because of workload and pressure. This should by all costs be avoided. Look after yourself first so that you can look after your pupils better.
Rest over the weekend:
Use your weekends to take time out and switch off. As much as we love our work, it is imperative that we take time away from it. Do not feel guilty for doing so. Organise and schedule your week to avoid doing work related tasks over the weekend. Saturday and Sunday are meant for resting, and you should do just that – at least most weekends!
Organisation is key to keeping control of things. By being organised you can avoid stressful situations that will help you tackle your workload and teach without added pressure.
It is important to prioritise and promote self-awareness and teacher well-being as it will contribute to teachers’ increased productivity and longevity in their chosen profession. Ultimately, this will lead to healthier and more competent professionals that will be fit to teach children and equip them for the future. For those of you who may be wondering if I do all the above, no I don’t. This is an article for all teachers including myself – a sort of mental note. No one is perfect, we can all improve in certain areas and should aim to do so by helping and supporting each other as best we can.
Which area do you need to improve in? Comment below.
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