10 Self Care Tips For Teachers

10 Self Care Tips For Teachers

Take care of you so you can take care of your students
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Teaching is probably one of the most stressful jobs on the planet! Especially for those working in high poverty schools where toxic stress seems to run rampant! Because of this we all need to be mindful of self care, it's impossible to pour from an empty cup. You need to take the time to take care of yourself without feeling guilty. I'm not always the best at self care, and the same self care methods don't work for everyone, but I've found a few that work well for me and could easily be modified to work for almost any teacher.


1. Find your passion... NO, not teaching, a passion outside the classroom!

For me it's Zumba, I love doing Zumba, I love teaching Zumba and I love my Zumba family. At Zumba everything vanishes for an hour, my stress melts off and I can relax. Find out what does that for you! I have teacher friends who play soccer or other sports! One even plays ultimate frisbee. Others turn to art such as painting, sculpting or photography. Find something you love and engage in it whenever you can.

2. Exercise... it's not just for losing weight

I started exercising to lose weight, but I've found that it makes me feel good emotionally as well as physically! Endorphins are a powerful feeling. When I finish a strength training session, long hike, or even a quick walk I feel energized and refreshed. If I'm having a bad day a quick walk at lunch or planning can help. I've even been known to take my class for a few quick laps around the blacktop when they drive me nuts, or throw on a brain break because I'm stressing. Find an exercise that works for you and stick with it. Your mind AND your body will thank you for it! Here's an article that explains why https://www.fastcompany.com/3025957/work-smart/wha...

3.Sit down to eat your lunch, and JUST EAT YOUR LUNCH! No planning or work allowed!!!

I know it won't happen every day, that's just not realistic, but try to make it happen at least twice a week. I even turn out my lights and shut the door... yes I hide!! I know you have a lot to do but you deserve a break!

4. Accept the fact that you will never be done with everything...

As a teacher there will always be "just one more thing" you need to get done. Don't even try to get everything done! Just take a deep breath and find a good stopping place, then STOP, and don't feel guilty about it.

5. Coloring!!

Ok this one isn't for everyone, but those adult coloring books are really fun and relaxing. I like the mandala ones best. It's easy to lose yourself in them, and sometimes you need to get lost!

6. Talk it out

Find someone you trust and spill your guts! It may be a friend, coworker, family member,or even a therapist. Just knowing that someone cares enough to listen goes a long way.

7. Get outside

Time in nature is great for your body and mind. All that sunshine (vitamin D) can really help wash that stress away.

8. Find some non teacher friends

I have a huge circle of non teacher friends and it's refreshing to hang out with them because they could care less about IEPs, MAP scores, 504 plans, conferences, behavior plans or any other random teaching thing. They have other interests, and because of that they can take your focus off all the stress that those aforementioned things create!

9. Chocolate...

This one isn't healthy, but it makes us happy!!!! I have proof... http://www.sciencefocus.com/blog/why-does-chocolat...

10. Just say NO!

For a long time I was that teacher who was always at school! I said yes to EVERYTHING. Every committee, every event, everything!! Now i pick and choose which I think are the most important to my students and I.

Overall do what makes you happy, not just what is best for your students, you deserve it!

Cover Image Credit: Amy Clink

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I Went To "The Bachelor" Auditions

And here's why you won’t be seeing me on TV.
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It’s finally time to admit my guilty pleasure: I have always been a huge fan of The Bachelor.

I can readily admit that I’ve been a part of Bachelor fantasy leagues, watch parties, solo watching — you name it, I’ve gone the whole nine yards. While I will admit that the show can be incredibly trashy at times, something about it makes me want to watch it that much more. So when I found out that The Bachelor was holding auditions in Houston, I had to investigate.

While I never had the intention of actually auditioning, there was no way I would miss an opportunity to spend some time people watching and check out the filming location of one of my favorite TV shows.

The casting location of The Bachelor, The Downtown Aquarium in Houston, was less than two blocks away from my office. I assumed that I would easily be able to spot the audition line, secretly hoping that the endless line of people would beg the question: what fish could draw THAT big of a crowd?

As I trekked around the tanks full of aquatic creatures in my bright pink dress and heels (feeling somewhat silly for being in such nice clothes in an aquarium and being really proud of myself for somewhat looking the part), I realized that these auditions would be a lot harder to find than I thought.

Finally, I followed the scent of hairspray leading me up the elevator to the third floor of the aquarium.

The doors slid open. I found myself at the end of a large line of 20-something-year-old men and women and I could feel all eyes on me, their next competitor. I watched as one woman pulled out her travel sized hair curler, someone practiced answering interview questions with a companion, and a man (who was definitely a little too old to be the next bachelor) trying out his own pick-up lines on some of the women standing next to him.

I walked to the end of the line (trying to maintain my nonchalant attitude — I don’t want to find love on a TV show). As I looked around, I realized that one woman had not taken her eyes off of me. She batted her fake eyelashes and looked at her friend, mumbling something about the *grumble mumble* “girl in the pink dress.”

I felt a wave of insecurity as I looked down at my body, immediately beginning to recognize the minor flaws in my appearance.

The string hanging off my dress, the bruise on my ankle, the smudge of mascara I was sure I had on the left corner of my eye. I could feel myself begin to sweat. These women were all so gorgeous. Everyone’s hair was perfectly in place, their eyeliner was done flawlessly, and most of them looked like they had just walked off the runway. Obviously, I stuck out like a sore thumb.

I walked over to the couches and sat down. For someone who for the most part spent most of the two hours each Monday night mocking the cast, I was shocked by how much pressure and tension I felt in the room.

A cop, stationed outside the audition room, looked over at me. After a brief explanation that I was just there to watch, he smiled and offered me a tour around the audition space. I watched the lines of beautiful people walk in and out of the space, realizing that each and every one of these contestants to-be was fixated on their own flaws rather than actually worrying about “love.”

Being with all these people, I can see why it’s so easy to get sucked into the fantasy. Reality TV sells because it’s different than real life. And really, what girl wouldn’t like a rose?

Why was I so intimidated by these people? Reality TV is actually the biggest oxymoron. In real life, one person doesn’t get to call all the shots. Every night isn’t going to be in a helicopter looking over the south of France. A real relationship depends on more than the first impression.

The best part of being in a relationship is the reality. The best part about yourself isn’t your high heels. It’s not the perfect dress or the great pick-up lines. It’s being with the person that you can be real with. While I will always be a fan of The Bachelor franchise, this was a nice dose of reality. I think I’ll stick to my cheap sushi dates and getting caught in the rain.

But for anyone who wants to be on The Bachelor, let me just tell you: Your mom was right. There really are a lot of fish in the sea. Or at least at the aquarium.

Cover Image Credit: The Cut

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High School Seniors Should Be Excited For College, Not Scared

Even though it seems stressful and it is a big new place, it will be some of the best memories you will have for life.

Cassidy
Cassidy
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Going into the summer after my high school graduation, all I could think about was college, and how I was going to prepare to go to a new school and move away from home. Just know, it is not as stressful as you prepare yourself for it to be. You don't need to worry about not having any friends or not knowing how to get to all the different buildings because you have to remember everyone else on campus has been in the exact same position you are in, and there are tons of people on campus to help you.

One of the things I was most worried about was classes and how to know which classes to take. My advice is to go to counseling and plan out your classes before you register. Planning out classes will drastically help you stay on track and the counselors will help you make a balanced schedule that you can actually handle.

Another piece of advice would be to not bring as much stuff for your dorm as you think you will need. By all means, bring the essential things that you will need, but remember a dorm room is very small and you share it with another person. You won't have a ton of space for extra stuff and you want to have space to move around and actually live in your dorm.

Finally, if you are concerned about meeting people and making friends, just try and be as outgoing and open as possible. Everyone else in the dorms is just as nervous as you are too meet people, it really helps to try to branch out. Joining clubs or greek life also helps you meet people around campus with common interests as you.

College is not something to be scared of. Even though it seems stressful and it is a big new place, it will be some of the best memories you will have for life.

Cassidy
Cassidy

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