Friday, January 4, 2019

Let's Talk About Self-Care


As we get ready to head back to school, or for some of us we may already be back, it is so important to make sure that self-care is a part of your schedule. I say this because I know that as teachers, we can get very busy. From our schools to our homes, we have a lot that needs to get done. As for me, I can start working on a project and get all excited when I get to cross it off my to do list, only then to realize that I still have five other things to still cross off. Yes, at times it may feel like we have a continuous to do list, yes and you may be wondering why I am suggesting to add one more thing to that list. Well, in my experience, I truly believe that when we take care of ourselves and add self-care to our schedules, we are then able to give our best selves to our job, our students, our family and friends, and to the world.

I believe that it is crucial for teachers to take care of themselves outside of the classroom in order to be their best selves inside of the classroom. I know that our lists are long, but it is so important to add self-care into our schedules. For every individual, self-care looks different and it is up to you to determine what re-energizes, renews, and restores you! For me, self-care can be in the simplest form of a walk or pausing to watch the sunset. It can also be in the form of a workout, a pedicure, reading a good book, or even just soaking in a bubble bath. Each of us has our own way to relax, to renew, and to recharge. By knowing what form of self-care works for you, you are then able to set aside time for it in your schedule. I know it may seem silly to schedule time to go on a walk, but sometimes if we don’t intentionally set that time aside, we can get distracted and end up working on something else entirely. Then, we end up not having any time left to walk at the end of the day.

As we head back to work, I challenge you to intentionally take time for self-care. Put it in your schedule and see what happens! I firmly believe that when we take care of our self, we can better take care of others and be our best selves, fully recharged, renewed, and restored. Here are a few practical ways we as teachers can add a few self-care moments to our schedules. 

Make a Weekly Workout Schedule
When I set my mind on working out and write it down in my planner, it is more than likely that I will commit to it. This does not work for everyone however; again, you have to know yourself and what self-care looks like for you. Here is an example of what a weekly workout schedule might look like.
 
Stay Hydrated
As teachers we are on our feet almost all day with our students, sometimes barely having time to sit down for our full lunch time. It is so important that you stay hydrated. Drink your water! One way to help you drink even more water is by infusing it. Here are some flavors you can try next time and bring to school with you: 
lemon & orange 
strawberry & mint 
strawberry & orange
lemon & lime
raspberry & orange
pineapple & mint

Eat Healthy
I don’t know about you, but after the holidays, I feel like it is time for a sugar detox. What are you packing in your lunch? Make sure that you are including proteins, fruits, and veggies. I personally love using sectioned plastic containers to make sure I am packing a well-balanced meal. This way I am making sure that I am nourishing my body at school.


Breathe
Yes, this one is a simple one, but sometimes overlooked. Take time in your day to pause and take a few deep breathes. Whenever I feel stressed or getting to the point of being overwhelmed, I just pause for a moment to take a deep breathe or two. Focus on your breathing and try to pay attention to your breaths. Are you giving yourself moments throughout the day to stop and inhale peace and exhale stress and tension?


Although these are only a few examples, I challenge you to make sure you are including self-care on your schedule as you head back to your classroom.
You got this my friend!



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