Keeping Your Sanity Through A Tough School Year
The first year of teaching (and every year after, if I’m speaking honestly) will always bring emotional ups and downs as the school year continues. I know, you’re trying your best and going above and beyond to be a great teacher and do right by your students. Sometimes, crap is going to still happen. Things will blow up in your face, as the teacher, you will get blamed for whatever goes wrong, and you’ll feel terrible and stressed out about it.
Don’t take it personally.
In most of these situations, no matter what you did or didn’t do, the outcome would still be the same. It’s not you. You were just unlucky to encounter it, but if it wasn’t you, it would be the next teacher or the next person who was in your spot. Don’t let it over take your thoughts and affect your life at school or outside of school.
I learned this the hard way. My first 5 years of teaching, I went through some stressful times. I let it consume my thoughts. I would think about it at school and after I left work, I’d dream about it, I even started grinding my teeth at night from the stress!!
One day I thought to myself.. this is ridiculous. I am doing my best and working so hard, why is this happening? It’s taking over my life and affecting my ‘real life’ outside of work. Then I realized, you can’t take it personally. If you know you’re doing EVERYTHING you can, then that’s all you can do. You can’t control how other people receive it and you can’t control their actions. All you can do is your best. If you do that, the rest is out of your hands.
Don’t let what you can’t control, consume you.
After that 5th year and all my new revelations about teaching and life, I was able to let it go. As long as I tried my best, did all that I could to be a great teacher, and was there for my students, I was okay. Of course that did not stop crazy things from happening, but I was able to separate the emotions and not take it personally.
This is one of the reasons why I am still teaching today. If you let it take over your life, you will most definitely burn out. So try to remember, if you’re doing everything you can, that’s all you can do, don’t take it personally!