It’s natural to feel a duty to your students and other people in your life, but it’s also important to remember this time of year that your mental and physical health should be a priority. See if you’re hitting all the must-dos on this list of self-care tips!
Why is Self-Care So Important?
Much like putting gas in the car enables us to drive from one place to another, keeping yourself healthy mentally and physically enables you to be the best version of yourself and the best teacher for your students. Of course, filling up a gas tank is a bit simpler than living an emotionally and physically healthy life, but the time invested in self-care is sure to pay off in more ways than one.
Many teachers find themselves overwhelmed by a busy schedule, a million items on a never-ending to-do list, and a high standard for performance in both their professional and personal lives. However, there are steps that can be taken to help prevent burnout and feelings of anxiety.
Six Tips for Second Semester Slump
Check out some of these tips and suggestions for fighting the second semester slump and keeping yourself healthy and mentally fit all year round.
You know where your schedule could use a little help. Whether it’s in the kitchen or your sleep schedule, planning ahead can help you greet new challenges and feel prepared for the day. Plan out healthy lunches or meal prep at home. Consider writing out a reasonable daily to-do list of things and preparing your work bag at night before you go to bed. Create emergency lesson plans in case a substitute teacher has to step in, and bring snacks to keep in your desk to fight off those mid-afternoon yawns.
Fitting exercise into an already busy schedule can be a struggle. Instead of trying to set aside a half hour or full hour to exercise, fit in small bursts of activity throughout the day. Try involving students in mini activity bursts to release energy and join in. Take a few minutes a day to speed walk around your school or dance to a song in the morning while getting ready for work. Any movement is good movement, and activity helps to decrease stress and makes for better sleep.
Get Enough Sleep
Getting in activity throughout the day is part of the equation, but the other part is getting adequate rest. Your body needs time to refresh after a busy day, and quality sleep is an important factor in staying healthy and keeping stress levels low. Try to follow a semi-regular sleep schedule to train your body to get as full of a rest as possible, and take some time to unwind by reading a book or meditating before hitting the pillow. Try to avoid looking at your phone watching TV right before bed.
Connect with Friends
Of course spending time with friends is a good time, but it’s also an important part of maintaining your health and wellbeing. A busy schedule might mean planning ahead, but getting together for a meal or a cup of coffee with a friend is a great way to refresh or vent after a busy week or month. Plus, looking forward to a friendly get-together can make a tough week go by more quickly.
Fuel Your Body
A crammed schedule can make it tough to have the right foods on hand. However, making body fuel a priority will not only give you more energy, but can save money. Grabbing a quick bite from the drive thru is tempting when time is short, but a little planning ahead and pre-packing of healthy snacks will help to make the drive-thru less tempting. Try almonds or fruit for a quick snack, or keep a granola bar or two in your bag or desk for a little fuel in a pinch. The key is feeding your body with foods that give you the energy you need to be the best you can be.
Set Realistic Goals
When it comes to making changes to improve your overall health and mental wellbeing, it’s important to ease into the changes. Start by making small shifts in behaviors and creating new habits, and write down realistic goals. Try putting your goals somewhere visible so that you are reminded of them often, and so you can check them off as you hit them and set new ones. The second semester of the school year comes with its own struggles, but with some dedication it can feel much less stressful.
Find More Self-Care Advice
If you’re looking for more advice and tips for keeping yourself mentally and physically fueled to be the best educator you can be, stop by our blog site home page and browse other related posts and the most recent content. We’re sure you’ll find something interesting to read, and maybe even some new ideas to try out!