Teachers are known to be caring professionals. They give so much time and energy to caring for the needs of students, colleagues, family members, and friends at the expense of their own needs. Often times, they give so much to others that they are completely spent and burn out.
The best way to fight the burn is with a regular routine of revitalizing self-care. In their book Fostering Resilient Learners: Strategies for Creating a Trauma-Sensitive Classroom, authors Kristin Souers and Pete Hall identify the top four components of a self-care plan (pp. 196-197):
- Health. It makes good sense that we must meet our health needs to avoid burnout. Regular periods of exercise, proper nutrition, and regular times of rest help to keep our minds and bodies in optimum condition for managing the stresses of life.
- Love. Regularly spend time with family members and friend. Reward yourself with something special in order to rejuvenate your mind and spirit.
- Competence. Challenging yourself to learn something new will take you out of your comfort zone, but it will help you to grow. As you grow, you will feel a sense of pride in your accomplishments, and you can share your new experiences.
- Gratitude. Every day we all can find something for which to be grateful. Take a moment to write it down. Finding those silver linings can improve our moods and carry us through the day.
As you plan for next week, be intentional regarding your own self-care. Build into your schedule time to exercise, time to spend time with family members, and time to learn something new. Set aside a few moments daily to write down the things for which you are thankful. You will find it to be tremendously beneficial!