This final chapter explores our self-care; our capacity to be kind to ourselves because failure to do this is damaging to the longevity of our job and to our health.
While we’re busy teaching students and parents to take care of themselves in every way that matters, many of us who work in schools do not do this. It seems the drive to practice self-care, isn’t innate and is too easily sapped by the extraordinary demands around us. Without consciously renewing our own spirit, our health wanes and the humanity good educators generate towards others can dissipate.
So, think about it?
* How do you take care of your physical health?
How do you ensure your best mental health and happiness?
* How do you nurture your spirituality?
* What failproof self-care structures have you organised in your life?
* What do you do to nourish yourself and recuperate your spirit?
* Have you formalised a personal ‘health care plan’?
Schools and classrooms are tough places to work. They demand a lot from every educator. Teaching today is highly political, intricate, layered and emotionally fused. Consequently, it’s easy to lose the way and feel crushed by system, curriculum, leadership, students, parents and system demands. Yet, to be effective, everyone requires your poise, for you to stay well, turn up each day in the right, light frame of mind and connect with them.
This chapter asks a series of reflective questions to help educators gauge the depth of their emotional reserves. It challenges every educator to set up their own ‘health care plan’ to ensure wellbeing and proposes a series of suggestions to do just this. To continue to connect to, and enthuse students, every educator needs opportunities to find happiness and rejuvenation. There is no other way!