As a first-year teacher, it can be hard to avoid teacher burnout.
Have you ever spaced out and then realized you were spacing out so you snapped yourself out of it? What about driving? Have you ever gotten in the car, started driving, and then before you know it, you’re at your destination crossing your fingers, hope you obeyed all the laws because you’re suddenly at your destination and you don’t remember how you got there.
This is a lot like what burnout can feel like. And as a new teacher with a demanding workload, it can be easy to become overwhelmed and burned out. Learning coping strategies early on can help you manage your feelings of burnout and start your year off with enthusiasm and energy.
Here are 7 tips that will help you avoid teacher burnout once and for all.
So grab that cup of coffee, and let’s get to it!
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Take time for yourself
The first way to avoid teacher burnout as a first year teacher is to take time for yourself. It’s important to remember that taking care of yourself is a top priority as a teacher. You can do this by scheduling down time into your day, whether that’s grabbing lunch with a colleague or sitting in silence during your prep period. Make sure you get adequate sleep and physical activity – all of these things can help reduce stress and fatigue.
If you need some ideas on how to take time for yourself, checkout these 40 Self-Care Ideas that take 5 Minutes or less!
Set clear boundaries
One of the best things any first-year teacher can do is set clear boundaries between work and home. Your job can be all-consuming, especially with the start of a new school year. Give yourself time off that’s unconnected to lesson preparation and grading so you can maintain proper balance. This may mean taking time each day or week to devote to your family, hobbies, or anything that brings you joy outside of teaching. With clear boundaries, it’s a lot easier to avoid teacher burnout.
Maintaining certain routines throughout the school year can be a great way to avoid teacher burnout. Establish routines for yourself during the day and prioritize tasks that need to be done, as well as leave time for rest. This will help you stay on top of things and keep from feeling overwhelmed with more tasks than you have time for. Additionally, maintain regular office hours so you have time to connect with students without feeling like your job follows you home every night. If you want to learn more about leaving work on time, click here!
Prepare Ahead of Time
As a first year teacher, it can be easy to get overwhelmed and burnt out by the amount of lesson planning that is required. To avoid this, try to plan ahead and create as many lessons as you can during the summer months before school starts. This will help reduce stress when the school year begins and give you more free time during the year to relax or pursue other projects or hobbies.
Nourish Your Body and Soul
Don’t neglect your mental and physical health in the pursuit of an effective classroom experience. Make sure to take breaks throughout the day to recharge, get some fresh air, and step away from your desk. Eating healthy, nutritious meals can also help reduce stress and give you the energy you need to make it through every day with a smile on your face. Taking time out for yourself is important—be sure to treat yourself occasionally so that you don’t experience burnout!
Take 5 minutes for yourself
It’s extremely to be a friend to yourself if you’re looking to avoid teacher burnout. One great way to do this is to take 5 minutes for yourself each day. One thing about life is it’s one great experiment. You don’t have to have it all figured out yet. Just pick one thing and try it for 5 minutes. If you need ideas check out the Ultimate Self-Care Guide!
Overall there are several different ways you can avoid teacher burnout. Just remember that: