Chronic fatigue and constant stress. Impairment of labor and problematic administration. Lack of time for family and low salary.
The teacher, who at one time was inspired to hurry to school, is leaving. He “burned out”: the disadvantages outweighed all the advantages of teaching. This happens, and unfortunately, it is not uncommon.
Burnout is one of the key reasons why the best teachers are eventually forced to leave school. Most of them until recently adored their work, but later began to feel less and less satisfaction and focus on the negative aspects. Unfortunately, the teaching profession is at risk of professional burnout.
However, why do some teachers “burn out” in a few years and lose all meaning of the profession, and some work with pleasure all their lives? How to prevent burnout and get joy from your favorite thing?
Avoid toxic communication
Among your acquaintances, and perhaps among colleagues, there are certainly people in whose lives everything is chronically bad. Everything and always: clumsy bosses, naughty children, restless students, stupid colleagues, rainy weather, insignificant power and more. In fact, no matter how objective it is, they feel that way and, worse, they are ready to talk about it for hours.
Should you spend your time on such conversations or listening to a monologue, the content of which does not change? How do you feel during such communication?
If possible, stay away from people who are chronic whining. Try to surround yourself with individuals who know how to notice the good around and are constantly developing professionally. They inspire and motivate!
Allow yourself to “live” your own emotions
A teacher’s life is full of constant stress. At the same time, the teacher must be balanced and not allow the manifestation of negative emotions in the environment. Because of this, most teachers have to “hide” them in themselves: you can’t vent your anger at work, you can’t do it at home. But the fact that we do not give an instant emotional reaction, we do not stop feeling. In this situations what to do with your emotions so that the negative things does not accumulate and poison your life?
Try to put your emotions on paper. Find a time and a quiet place where no one will bother you and you will be able to fully immerse yourself in your own emotional state and describe it. This can be done at least three ways:
- Describe your experiences: fear, anger, hatred, anxiety and more. This allows you to structure your own thoughts. In addition, this practice frees the brain from the negative. Have you probably noticed how often it gets easier after you talk to someone? And “chatter” in writing allows you to look at your experiences from the outside. This is especially useful if you re-read what is written a little later, when the main emotional wave subsides, and analyze whether everything is really as serious as it seemed at the time.
- Ask yourself a number of questions. How do you feel? What are the reasons for your emotional state? Can you somehow influence the situation, if so, how? Try to answer these questions honestly, during which you will be able to pragmatically analyze the emotional situation.
- Draw what you feel. Try to draw your experiences with different colors and abstract images. This practice will help you focus on your emotional state and live it to the fullest. Then try to draw another abstraction in bright colors.
Do not compare yourself with others
Sometimes you drop your hands and it seems that your colleagues are much more successful: they are better able to find common ground with students and colleagues; students eagerly run to them for lessons; in addition to school, they successfully conduct all-Ukrainian webinars / publish manuals or textbooks. And they have a happy family and order in the family. It seems that they generally have much more time, but do not turn work into a way of life.
We all tend to compare ourselves to others. At the same time, on the one hand, we are often quite critical of ourselves and our own achievements, and on the other – we do not see an objective picture of the environment, but only what we are shown.
It is worth remembering that you are not worse than someone, but just others: everyone has their own path and goals.
If you are worried that you are not doing enough, set your priorities and analyze your recent achievements (for example, in a year or five): how you have changed during this period, what you have learned, what new skills you have learned, where you have traveled, what your students have achievements. You definitely have something to be proud of, even if it’s imperceptible right away!
Think about what you would like to achieve in a year, five or ten years? Outline your goal and confidently move towards achieving it in your own way!
Plan your life and professional development
When a teacher does not see prospects and does not set goals, his professional life after some time loses meaning, there is a feeling of a continuous “swamp”. All these are signs of burnout. To prevent this condition, plan your life, set short- and long-term goals for professional growth, and follow your personal schedule.
For example, your goal in 2 years is to go to another country to work as a teacher on an exchange program.
How to achieve the goal? Find relevant international programs, such as Erasmus +. Carefully review the requirements for candidates, assess your strengths and weaknesses, and plan how to fill gaps in your own knowledge and skills.
As a rule, plan your next day every night, taking into account the tasks that contribute to achieving your goal (for example, international internship). At the same time, it is necessary to make the schedule of the day in such a way that it does not cover only school affairs and professional development, but also time for personal life and hobbies. After all, no matter how good a job is, the way of life should not be built exclusively around it.