Teaching is hard. It’s a lifestyle that people choose because of their love of teaching and the rewards they reap from working with their students. However, it’s also underpaid, hard work. Because of this, it is very easy to get burned out when you’re teaching. Burnout can make it difficult for you to go to work each day. It can also have an impact on your mental health. If you’re suffering from burnout as a teacher, here are some tips you can try.
1. Set Boundaries
It is easy to let teaching take over your life. If you’re answering questions at midnight and devoting all of your spare time to your work, you’re much more likely to burn out. Instead, make a point of establishing healthy boundaries as early as possible. Keep your work life and home life separated. While you won’t always be able to do this, doing it as much as possible will help you prevent the worst of the boundary crossing. Once you have rules in place about when and where you’re going to work, follow them. You’ll enjoy your work more and you’ll have more opportunities to decompress.
2. Get Enough Sleep
Healthy sleep habits are essential to your physical and mental health. The more you sleep, the better prepared you are to deal with the less appealing aspects of your job. So make sure you get plenty of sleep each night. If you are physically and emotionally healthy, the more overwhelming aspects of your job might be easier to comprehend and correct than they otherwise would be.
3. Take Up New Hobbies
If you only have your work, you’re going to burn out. Take up hobbies that have nothing to do with teaching. You should have a varied lifestyle that includes different activities that benefit you in certain ways. For instance, 50% of survey respondents say that gardening helps them feel calm. If you’re feeling anxious, this could be a rewarding hobby for you. If you have a balanced lifestyle with many different facets to it, you have other things to turn toward when teaching gets stressful. This will help you reduce the risk of burnout.
4. Avoid Boredom
You don’t want to be bored at work. When you’re bored, you aren’t engaging with what you’re doing. Engaged employees are 87% less likely to resign from their companies. The same goes for teachers. If you’re finding yourself bored at work, look for ways to make it interesting again. You may want to take on different responsibilities. Or maybe shake things up with your teaching methods, if you’ve fallen into a rut. Becoming more interested in your work will help you if you’re burned out.
5. Look At Your Opportunities
If you’re dealing with burnout and these other options aren’t helping as much as they could, look into other job opportunities. If you want to stay in teaching, there are a lot of options. 70% of state-funded pre-K programs are delivered through public schools. However, the others are done through private providers or community organizations like Head Start. Working for one of these might be a better fit for you. If no teaching jobs sound appealing, then maybe consider transferring your skills to a different job.
Teacher burnout is a serious problem. If you’re among the many teachers who feel burnt out and unable to do their job with the skill and passion they once had, you need to address it. Otherwise, it can do damage to your entire lifestyle. Look for ways you can improve your situation, both in and out of school.