What is Stress?
Stress is the feeling of mental, physical, and emotional tension or distress. It is a feeling or situation where an individual feels unwell. There can be multiple or different sources of stress for different people. The sources of stress for a teacher can be- piles of assignments to be evaluated, negative feedback from the students, pending lesson planning, etc. These are some of the commonly known reasons for a teacher’s stress, but there are more.
What is Stress Management?
Stress management is the technique of controlling and managing stress. Any individual can land into a situation of distress, especially the professionals of the teaching profession. Teachers have a gazillion things on their plate at any point of time, student results, assigning homework, syllabus completion, feedback and so on. With all such tasks on the list, it is very normal to land into stressful situations. However, with the right stress management techniques, teachers can handle such situations easily.
Why is Stress Management Important For Teachers?
1- To stay motivated to teach- Happiness and peace are the two major reasons for an individual to work hard day and night. Stress is the biggest hurdle when it comes to staying happy and motivated in whatever a person does. However, with the right mindset and right stress management techniques, individuals can stay motivated for a longer period of time. To give their best and help the students in being successful and better each day, teachers surely need to keep themselves motivated.
2- To maintain a work-life balance- Just like any other individual, teachers have a life outside their classroom or workplace too. However, the teachers sometimes mix their personal as well as professional life by taking the stress of the workplace at home. It is important for the teachers to practice stress management techniques in order to maintain a work-life balance.
3- To maintain a good mental, physical, and emotional health- “Health is wealth”, teachers say this phrase to their students multiple times in the classroom. However, they themselves forget to take care of their mental, physical, and emotional well-being. In order to maintain good health, the teachers should surely practice stress management techniques from time to time.
Stress Management Techniques For Teachers
- Identify the source of stress- If the teachers encounter the situation of distress at any point of time in their life, the first thing they should do is identify the source of stress. The second step is to identify if it is worth it to worry or stress about that particular situation or event. The third step is to take necessary actions and get back on track.
- Talk it out- There is nothing wrong in having a discussion with trustworthy people in a situation of distress. Opening up about your issues can actually help the individuals in feeling better about the situation. Teachers can open up to their students or fellow teachers, if not the direct solution, they will surely find a better way to deal with the situation.
- Take breaks- Studies have shown that taking breaks not only prevents but also reduces stress. Just like any other professional, teachers deserve a break too. Teachers can take breaks by planning the classes for the students in advance. They can also reschedule the classes or take extra classes on some days. Taking breaks remains the best stress management technique of them all.
- Find your coping mechanism- Every individual has a different way of dealing with things and different coping mechanisms. Teachers should spend some time with themselves and explore their unique coping mechanisms. These mechanisms can be as simple as going for a walk, reading a poem, or eating their favorite food.
- Say no to comparisons- Many times stress comes from comparing ourselves or our situation with others. Teachers should avoid comparing themselves to fellow teachers. It would make their life easier and bring their stress to almost zero. They should not only follow this mantra but should also tell their students about it.
“Mental health awareness doesn’t mean fighting stress, anxiety, depression and other everyday mental health issues, rather it means consciously modulating the habits that intensify those issues. Once you are in control of your habits, instead of checking your habits, you would automatically be in a much better shape, both mentally and physically.” ―Abhijit Naskar
Thank you and Happy Teaching!