I have found after many years (20+) of teaching that teaching is a career that you could spend most of your waking moments on. The trick is to try to make your job easier by teaching smarter and not working harder. That is a whole other topic but looking after yourself so you CAN teach smarter is what we are talking about today. There are 3 things that you need to think about when you are trying to balance your life and enjoy happy, less stressed days and they all begin by focussing on yourself. You know the old saying, you are no good to anyone else if you are not healthy or happy. Here are 3 things that I try to do to help me maintain some balance.
1. Your Mind ~ to cultivate a healthy mind I take time each day to be still and quiet. I like to take deep breaths, and just try not to think about anything. Once I do that, I can then reflect thoughtfully on my day. Taking care of your brain is the first step to looking after your body according to Daniel Siegel, MD in his audio book The Mindful Brain
2. Your Body ~ taking care of your body is not just exercising. It means fuelling it with healthy, nutritious foods so that you have increased energy and brain power. I like to strength train and walk. Strength training helps me to do daily functional things in the classroom like get out and run with the students or even just be on my feet all day facilitating their learning. :)
3. Your Spirit ~ this is my favorite part of looking after my teacher self and my mom self. It is just simply so gratifying keeping a positive mind set and using that to help others. I practice gratitude daily whether it is just as I watch life go on or whether I write about it. I make a special effort to help people that need it most. It makes me feel good and the positive nature of it all just elevates me more and gives me more energy.
Do you have a good balance going on? I know as we head back to school that everyone would LOVE to hear about it! I am always trying to learn more and get new ideas from you friends.
I created this set called Striving For Teacher Balance (but it truly is for anyone) based on some of the things that work for me. Those pictures are from Teacher Wellness and Gratitude journal that is included. You can use it on your own or have a wellness party with your friends and do it together! You can find the link for this product here.
Thanks for reading friends and here's to our good health!