This time of the year is always hard as a teacher with burnout. As educators, we give our entire hearts to our profession and our kids. As a result, sometimes we neglect to take care of ourselves. In the process of caring for others and teaching others, we get lost somewhere and I know that in the winter, burnout really starts getting to a lot of teachers, myself included. These past two years of education have been difficult, to say the least, and it is vital that we as educators take care of ourselves so we can be our best for our students – just like on an airplane, you put on your mask before you put on your partner’s.
Here are a few different ways you can reset and refresh yourself to get you through the rest of the year.
When I start feeling burned out, one thing that helps is to put down technology for a solid day, cellphones and television included! Taking a day to just be with the ones around me always makes me feel more refreshed and helps me focus on the now. It can be hard not having your cellphone on you for a day but going on a walk and having the ability to clear your head is always rewarding and good for your heart.
Learn Something New
Another thing that always helps me when I start feeling fatigued is to try something new that interests me. You can try out a new recipe, start a puzzle, read a new book, or even try to learn a language! Learning new things always helps my brain push the reset button and helps me focus more on the now. Hobbies are another thing that always helps to lower my stress levels and decompress to prevent burnout. I like to go for a run or knit a scarf during this cold season!
Make Time for “Me Time”
One of my favorite things that helps me to prevent burnout is to schedule “me time” daily. This could be on my drive home from work with the radio off and not talking on the phone, or just laying down in bed for ten minutes when I get home. Taking time to just decompress and remember why you do what you do is so important and is something that you can do daily. Additionally, during that time, I like to say at least one positive thing that happened that day and take a moment to be thankful.
Care for Others
One last thing that you can do to help prevent burnout is by doing something positive for someone else. Doing something like making cookies for firefighters, writing a positive note to a fellow teacher that is also struggling, or volunteering are great positive things to do that not only give back to the community but also help your heart fill back up.
Education is hard, but so rewarding! Remember to take care of yourself and don’t give up! We have been through so much these past few years and taking time for yourself is beneficial to your mental health and will benefit your students as well!