If you’re a teacher, this statement will probably come as no surprise to you: teaching can be stressful. Yes, teaching can be super stressful, not only because of the work that goes into designing lessons and units that help create a meaningful and relevant learning experience for our students. Teaching is, in my humble opinion, one of the most – if not the most – important job on the face of the earth. We are educating, inspiring, and encouraging the future of the world!! No big deal, right? 😉 In short: teachers are awesome!
I, like many of you, have a completely full plate. In addition to teaching high school Social Studies full-time, I’m also an adjunct Educational Technology instructor, blogger (obviously), author (my book will be published in May!), reader, runner, school and church board member, coffee addict, daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, friend, and MOST IMPORTANTLY a mommy and a wife. I’m often asked how in the world I do all of this, and my response is always “by the grace of God and coffee – in that order!”
However, I do get stressed and overwhelmed at times. Really, though – who doesn’t? Even if you’re not in our line of work, we all find ourselves treading water instead of floating on our backs sometimes. Today, I felt like sharing the ways that I de-stress …
I started blogging in January of 2014 and, since then my blog has become a form of stress relief. I love discussing ideas, reflecting on classroom experiences, and sharing technology tools that can help enhance the learning experience for my students. I’ve found that blogging about my classroom has also allowed me to find my voice as a teacher, connect with other educators around the world, expand my views on what teaching and learning “should look like,” and hold myself accountable for what happens in my classroom.
This form of stress relief probably stems from being an athlete in high school and my freshman year in college, but pushing myself to the point of exhaustion for 30 minutes is a fantastic form of stress relief for me. I LOVE running, and my family knows that if Mommy seems a little stressed, she probably needs to go hang out on her treadmill for a bit 🙂 Right now, I’m in the middle of the 80 Day Obsession program from Beachbody, so I’m not running. However, the 30-50 minutes a day of pushing myself helps me clear my mind and refocus on my thoughts.
I’ve always been a reader -> the idea that I can open a book and jump into a different world is so relaxing for me. As a youngster, I LOVED reading books like The Chronicles of Narnia, The Boxcar Children, and the Babysitter’s Club. It’s no doubt now that reading is still a wonderful hobby. My reading choices are wide-ranging and include everything from Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson adventures, to Sophie Kinsella’s Shopaholic books, to books that expand my ideas about classroom instruction and practices. If you’re looking for a book to read this summer, check out my book, Illuminate: Technology Enhanced Learning! It’s available now on Amazon — after you pre-order, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll send you a freebie!
Teaching can be a stressful, challenging profession, but it is also extraordinarily rewarding. It’s important that teachers remember to take care of themselves as we progress through the school year and our careers. I’m often reminded of the phrase, “you can’t pour from an empty cup,” which is completely true for life both in and out of my classroom!
What are my plans for this afternoon? Heading to pick up my daughters from school. Then, off to dance class for our youngest, and helping her big sister with homework. Then, home to get supper started, complete an 80 Day Obsession workout while my kiddos play. While waiting for my hubby to get home from work, I’ll probably snuggle my kiddos in the recliner while my oldest reads us a book. Next, it’s time for supper, then baths, then more cuddle time, then off to bed. Hopefully, I’ll be able to squeeze in some reading about developing assessment capable learners.
How do you de-stress and keep yourself refreshed?