I’ve been in education since 1994. Boy have times and teaching changed! Just by looking at the title of my blog, you can guess that I’m very passionate about teaching. However, I’ve had an epiphany – you don’t have to give up your life to be an effective teacher.
Yes, I have to admit. I used to think the more I put in, the longer I stayed, the more parents I called, the more, the more, and you get it. I was giving up my “me time” and family time to put in more for my students, school parents, job, admin, etc. I’ve learned through the years, you can still be a productive and effective teacher without living at the school, working LATE into the night, and working over breaks and on weekends.
When did this hit me? Not too long ago, I have to admit. When we were shutdown for COVID, and I contracted COVID, (along with COVID pneumonia), it hit me hard. What was truly important in life? I did some readjusting of my time and priorities, lots of self-reflecting, and reorganizing. It was time to think SMARTER and NOT work HARDER. I also learned to say NO without feeling guilty (this was a hard one for me)!
With “self care” being so cliche’ these days and all over the Internet, you may have already come to this realization early on in your life and career. I’m truly happy for you. I’d love for you to share in the comments what you do for “self care” because I’m still working on this. 😂 I can easily find myself regressing back to the old me. 😩
Six Self Care Practices I’ve Added to My Routine:
1. Drinking a Decaf Coffee or Tea at Night: It seems so simple, but it’s so helpful. While drinking my coffee or tea, I can’t do school work. That’s a deal I made with myself. I can be productive (such as blogging, pinning, making TpT products, etc), but NO schoolwork or grading is allowed.
2. Listen to your favorite music: To do this, I did purchase Amazon Music. Listen to your Pandora, Youtube, Spotify, or whatever you choose. I’ve created playlists such as Medication, Relaxation, Spa, etc. to relax to.
3. Exercise: This is the one I have the most trouble with. 🤪 However, as hard as it is to get started, once I do, I feel so much better. Yes, we all know the scientific proof of endorphins and such. I find that even if I don’t make it to the gym, a walk around the block or a bike ride, noticing my surroundings, and listening to uplifting music while walking or biking is just as calming. 🚶♀️🚲
4. Find a sleep app or Noise Machine: There are so many out there. Calm, Headspace, White Noise, etc. I loved the white noise and nature sounds so much that I bought a noise machine to use at school as well. My students love the various sounds.
5. Get a diffuser: I have several in my home and a large one at school. Peppermint is my favorite scent. It never fails – my students walk into my classroom and state how wonderful it smells. I love the colors and the scent! Very calming!
6. Read or listen to podcasts: I never found the time before to fit this in. Now I listen to audiobooks and/or podcasts while walking, watering the yard, working out, or just sitting in bed. It makes me laugh, get intrigued, and just plain relax. That’s the name of the game, right?!
I do hope you’ll share some of your favorite self-care routines.
Until next time,
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