Teaching seems like a fun and exciting career choice when your only experience with it is as a parent from the outside looking in. Once you are in the hot seat, it is, however, a whole different story and your stress levels reach new heights that you didn’t think was even possible. Between endless tests, lessons, whiney parents, fights with your learners and all the additional niggly issues, teaching can definitely be one of those jobs that can really get to you and test your patience and sanity!
Nothing is more rewarding than that all-important last bell that announces the December holidays! Not only does it remind you that you have more than a month ahead of you filled with blissful rest, but it also reminds you that you survived a school year without landing up in jail! It is vital that teachers make a concerted effort to decompress over the December holidays to gather their thoughts and recharge for the new year.
Let’s face it, there is a lot that happens during the school year that makes you angry and reach the absolute pinnacle of feeling unappreciated and undervalued. If you carry mental stress and resentment with you without decompressing, you could experience anything from health problems to personal issues in your relationships.
Try to decompress and do things that make you feel good and all warm and fluffy inside:
Go on a walk
Read a book
Watch tons of good movies and series
Get in touch with nature and animals – there is nothing that melts the stress away like a happy encounter with puppies!
Doing such activities lets a bit of light back in (that is if Eskom permits it at this stage) and you’ll find that it’s easier to separate stress from the rest of your life. Every individual is different and relax in different ways. Write your “must-do’s’, ‘wants’ and ‘would love to do’s” for this holiday. Even if the ideas on your list don’t necessarily materialise, it might help put things in perspective and make you realise that yes, you are a teacher, but most importantly you need to have the time when you can just completely switch off’ from being M’am or Sir and find yourself again at the end of the 2019 teaching war! You deserve to put you first!