Teachers: Stay Positive and Keep Your Sanity in these Trying Times of Being an Educator.
Are you feeling burnt out? Do you feel as though you, the teacher, has to do so much with hardly any support from your administration, colleagues, or parents? Well if so, stop right here. In this blog post, I will tell you how to persevere in these difficult times of being an educator so you don’t have a mental breakdown. Trust me, I know. I used to be a teacher over seven years ago and I taught for almost ten years. So, I know a thing or two about this. Here goes….
What is it That You Love About Education?
So, when I was a teacher, I experienced times where I just did not want to go to work at all. What helped me the most was thinking about why I even became a teacher. As I pondered the reason why it became clear to me why. I had summers off and all of the holidays, LOL. Not only that, the children that I taught depended on me to make learning fun and they did indeed learn. This is one way to keep positive thoughts about teaching. What is it that you love about being a teacher? Focus on that, and it’ll help you to fall in love with being in the teaching profession.
The object of education is to prepare the young to educate themselves throughout their lives.
~Robert Maynard Hutchins
Find Colleagues that Can Offer Solutions and not Problems.
There’s always someone complaining about the profession and how they don’t get paid enough and blah, blah, blah. I would always say to them, “If it’s so bad, find something else to do and stop complaining. At least you have a job.” I know that there were days when I didn’t want to go to work, however, when I was there I found joy in what I did. So, always try to find colleagues that can give you positive information and will push you to do better or think in innovative ways. Stay away from the naysayers! This will help you to stay upbeat and in a positive state of mind.
If You’re Watching the News, Stop!
Watching the news only makes things worse. You don’t have to completely stop, but at least try to curtail some of it. Pick news that will help you feel better about your profession, not those who drive your blood pressure up. You know, quality news, blogs, or news feeds.
What are Your Limits? Know How Far You Can Go.
Sometimes you have to say “Yes” to some assignments, but sometimes you have the right to say “No” or “Who else will be able to take on some of the responsibilities that I already have?” Know when to say when. This can definitely make a person insane. I’ve been there before. The only person they can seem to count on to get anything done is you and they want to give you every project to complete. Well, you can’t do it all, period. Say something. It’ll help you in the long run. If they change their attitude or the way they work with you because of you speaking up, so what. At the end of the day, your sanity is at risk.
Always Keep the Door Open to Work With Your Colleagues.
I know how it can be and sometimes you just don’t want to be bothered with anyone. You just want to get to work, get everything done for the day and just go home only to get ready to do it all over again the next day. Closing the door to collaboration with your colleagues will only quicken your demise. When you do this, the act begins to deteriorate your ability to see how you can benefit from the help of your colleagues. There are always some teachers willing to help and give you positive feedback. You know, the ones that actually enjoy their job and have the best ideas. These are the teachers you want to keep your door open to, literally.
Once there was a grain of sand that wanted to become a beach, an example of where you can’t always do it all by yourself.
Try Not to Get too Caught Up in Others’ Issues.
There are times in your teaching career where you have some colleagues that have personal issues going on in their life and they want to come and talk to you about it or vent about it and that’s okay. We all experience these times. However, there’s only so much you can take. We all try to help each other in times of need, but you have to first make sure that your cup is full before you begin to pour into others. Take care of yourself first and then offer some help. Allowing people to suck the life out of you can make you crazy, right? I know. Also, find other teachers that have positive outlooks to help keep you motivated, not always the energy drainers.
Thank Yourself for Being Yourself, A Teacher.
Lastly, thank yourself for being you. A great teacher! A great warrior on the battlefield. If you’re feeling unappreciated for all the hard work you do, thank yourself because you know what you did and how it has impacted you, your students and the community. We as teachers work our fingers to the bone and it goes unnoticed a lot or the administration doesn’t recognize you for a job well done and all they do is acknowledge the teachers that they like or are friends with and it sucks, I know. But, at the end of the day, you did damn good and you know it. Thank yourself. Give yourself a pat on the back because without us, where would this world be? You are the sole reason that people know what they know because someone “TAUGHT THEM.” Thank yourself for being the vessel of education, knowledge, imagination, and creativity for children all over the world.
Teachers cultivate the young minds who are responsible for the future.
A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.
~Henry Brooks Adams
So, in conclusion, remember what you love about education. Why did you begin teaching in the first place? Always find a colleague that can offer you solutions instead of problems and complaints. The news can be a good thing if it is quality news that lifts your spirits. Try not to watch too much of the negativity. It’ll make things worse and you’ll feel bad about the profession as a whole. When working with others, keep your door open to ideas and positive feedback from your colleagues. This will help you to keep your sanity and make things easier in the long run. Try not to get too caught up in other people’s drama and thank yourself for being you if at any time you feel unappreciated.