Being a teacher has always been difficult, but today it’s even more difficult than ever. The COVID-19 pandemic didn’t help with that either. The high stress that teaching tends to bring has led many teachers to burn out, which isn’t healthy. Burnout can lead you to feel cynical about your job, making something you might have loved before something you hate now. The last thing you want is to hate your job, especially when teaching is a career that can be extremely fulfilling. While burnout might seem inevitable in positions like this, there are plenty of ways that you can manage it and possibly even avoid it all together. Here are a few tips to help you avoid burnout as a teacher.
Talk About Burnout
As with any form of stress, the last thing you want to do is keep it bottled up. If you’re beginning to feel burnout from teaching, you should talk about the way you’re feeling. This can be with anyone you feel comfortable with, whether it’s a friend, a family member, or even one of your teaching colleagues. Get all of the negative feelings out, whether they involve anger, stress, or sadness. Talking about these things can help you confront them and oftentimes make you realize you’re not the only one who feels them.
Learn To Take Breaks
One of the most important things to do when you start to feel burnt out is take a break. It can be hard to do this with teaching, but it’s absolutely necessary. Leave your work at work, and do your best to avoid thinking and talking about work when you’re not there. Your entire life can’t be teaching — you need to make time for yourself so you can recharge. Read a book, watch a movie, go on a hike. Whatever it is that makes you happy outside of teaching is what you should focus on.
Focus On Your Health
Staying healthy is a must if you want to avoid burnout. This means both physically and mentally. Daily exercise is one great way to keep yourself healthy, and exercising can even be a great way to relieve any stress teaching may bring you. Your diet also plays a big role in your health and how it affects burnout. Having a healthy, balanced diet will help keep your mood stable and your energy levels high. Avoid eating lots of fatty or sugary foods, and make sure you get plenty of fruits and vegetables in. Most importantly, make sure you get a solid amount of sleep. Teaching can be an exhausting job, so you need your energy levels to be at their peak.
Recognize That You’re Good At Your Job
Experiencing burnout in teaching (or any job for that matter) can have a large impact on your self-esteem while working. This will only make your burnout worse. When you begin to feel the pressure of your job weighing on you, take a moment to acknowledge what you’re good at in the role. Maybe you’re good at connecting with the kids, or perhaps you’re great at explaining various concepts. Maybe your students enjoy the creative side of your class. Whatever it is, think about that and remember that you’re a skilled teacher who is better than your anxiety and stress make you feel.