Seven Self Care Ideas for Teachers
As rewarding as it is to teach the next generation of learners, it can also be mentally and emotionally draining. In fact, a recent poll showed that 46% of teachers experience high daily stress levels, which ties them with nurses for the most stressful occupation in America.
As an educator, you’re constantly putting students’ needs first, which is why it’s important you take every opportunity to prioritize your mental health and practice self care for educators.
At LifeCubby, the team behind our award-winning software is full of former childcare professionals who understand how important it is for staff to treat themselves after they’ve left the classroom for the day.
And to help you do just that, they’ve put together this list of easy and effective self care ideas for teachers:
● Disconnect yourself: Relaxing without technology is a great form of self care for educators. Give yourself a break from your phone, computer and TV. Instead, substitute those things with reading, cooking or being outdoors. “Unplugging” will rest your mind so it’s recharged by the time you return to work the next day.
● Do something you enjoy: Find what makes you feel good and integrate it into something that’s already part of your routine. If you have a skincare routine, seek products that will put a smile on your face knowing they’re good for you. If you work out in the morning, listen to a playlist that will get you excited for the day. Choose a form of happiness that adds to what you’re currently doing so you can look forward to it during the week. This is just one of the many self care ideas for teachers that allow you to unwind individually and completely.
● Rest your body: Oftentimes as educators, we don’t hit the pause button because we feel there’s always more work to be done. As a result of keeping the ball rolling, teacher burnout can take effect and leave you feeling overwhelmed. Learning when to rest is a crucial form of self care for teachers. One of the best self care ideas for teachers is to make an effort to include rest in your schedule to drive productivity. Your body will thank you, and you’ll feel refreshed.
● Practice mindfulness: Being present is an act many of us take for granted. It’s common to constantly worry about the future, but when you do, you’ll forget to focus on what’s happening now. Set aside a few minutes each day to meditate before you leave for class or as soon as you return home. Set the mood by lighting candles and playing relaxing music. Once you start including mindfulness into your routine, you’ll be able to put your full attention on your students.
● Daily affirmations: Instead of doubting your ability, remember to praise all of the things you do well everyday! These types of self care ideas for teachers really help to bring about happiness and positivity. We’d never say most of the negative things we say to ourselves to another person. So, replace those thoughts with positivity. Celebrate yourself and your hard work by reciting a mantra (that you believe in). This exercise will change your mindset and allow you to become more optimistic in your personal and professional life.
● Treat yourself: Set aside one day each month to take yourself out to a nice restaurant and indulge. Allow yourself to take in the ambiance and delicious food before returning to your responsibilities. You don’t need a reason to give yourself a treat once in a while — just do it because you deserve a break. Having a monthly reward will give you something to look forward to and appreciate once the time comes.
● Journaling: Self care for teachers is vital and being able to reflect on day-to-day emotions can be empowering. There’s so much that goes on each day that we’re often unable to process everything in the way we’d like. Writing your thoughts and feelings in a notebook is an effective way to grow as an educator and as a person. It’s also a great way to look back and see how you’ve conquered hard times that seemed impossible in the moment. Making an effort to express yourself once you’re home (while it’s fresh) can help you gain a new perspective.
No matter how you spend your “me” time, remember self care for educators is important to be the best version of yourself for your students.
Another great way to practice self care for teachers? Cutting down on the time you spend completing tedious tasks around the classroom. With LifeCubby’s easy-to-use childcare management software, you can free up hours each week to spend on yourself and your students. Click here to schedule a free demo and learn more today!