Teachers face some stress in their day-to-day job, and like any profession, they should look after their mental health.
While teachers have an enriching career, it can take its toll. In fact, studies suggest teachers are more likely to suffer job-related stress than other professions. I can’t imagine these studies have improved at all since the pandemic!
It’s worthwhile for teachers to look at some simple ways to improve their mental wellbeing. Here is some advice based on some guidelines from the NHS.
Simple Ways To Improve Teacher’s Mental Wellbeing
Meet With Other People
According to Web MD, relationships are crucial for your mental health; in fact, loneliness can be as bad as smoking fifteen cigarettes in one day.
There are many ways to meet other people. You could spend time with family and friends or get involved in activities in your local community. Even a video or voice call can be a way of connecting with others and build your sense of belonging.
Teaching might be mentally draining, but are you also finding a way to keep physically active? The great thing is that it doesn’t even need to take hours, as studies show that exercising even for 75-minutes per week (which is roughly 10 minutes per day) can allow us to reap the health benefits.
You can find a sport that you like, whether it’s dancing, pilates, or running, and make an effort to spend just a fraction of your day, even if it’s on your lunch break.
Everyone can benefit from mindfulness, otherwise known as being present and aware.
We can be mindful by taking a few deep breaths, focusing on what we feel, hear, see, taste, and touch. Spending just a few minutes each day on mindfulness practice reduces stress and helps us feel calmer in everyday situations.
Learn New Skills
Learning can keep our minds engaged and provide us with a sense of achievement. Learning can allow us to step out of our comfort zone and try something that we have never tried before, which can be a daunting yet exhilarating experience.
Maybe there was something you wanted to try before but never dared to do so. Or possibly your skill could be something more simple, such as learning how to cook a new recipe or work on a DIY project. You might even like to learn how to tutor online.
Learning a new skill can connect us to our sense of purpose and act as a worthwhile outlet at the end of the day.
Give To Others
Giving to others has been proven to improve our own wellbeing. Even just a small act of kindness can go a long way, allowing us to form a deeper connection with others.
You could try sending somebody a gift, or a special thank you note. You could also spend time with those in need by volunteering or offering someone a hand.
Giving to others is a selfless yet fulfilling act that can do the greater good for another person or a community.
These are just some of the many ways that teachers can practice self-care and help their wellbeing.
Especially now amidst the pandemic, there has never been a better time for teachers to look after their mental health.
Teachers need not feel guilty for putting themselves first sometimes. By learning to care for their own mental wellbeing, they will have a greater capacity to take on the day’s challenges and look after their students.
While teaching is a wonderful profession, teachers need to look after their mental health as it impacts their careers and life.
Having a healthy outlook and wellbeing can improve the quality of teaching and performance and provide an excellent example for students as they move forward.