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Flowerstill's Message:

I limit my days to 2 days per week, now that I overdid it for four years! Only the very best teachers! And regular yoga! Sounds strange but it is one of the best things I have ever done for stress and how I react to situations. Good luck !

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Discussion Review (newest messages first)
Flowerstill 11-11-2018 01:59 PM

I limit my days to 2 days per week, now that I overdid it for four years! Only the very best teachers! And regular yoga! Sounds strange but it is one of the best things I have ever done for stress and how I react to situations. Good luck !

Sirsubalot 11-10-2018 05:01 PM

What helps me is to put my reality into perspective, and to be extremely grateful for what I DO NOT have. This keeps me relatively happy and content.
Without this realization, I could have packed it in decades ago, and led a life of destitution and misery.

I was bullied and taunted from 7th grade and into college due to my awkwardness resulting from learning disabilities. The biggest bullies were my" friends".

My inability to handle these numerous negative events has made me a chronic underachiever, but yet, there are so many things I am not that I am so grateful for.

I am not blind, deaf, mentally challenged, terminally ill, or homeless. I have all my limbs and have not been crippled in an accident. I did not grow up in poverty or malnourished, never having to wonder where and when my next meal would be. I never suffered from drug abuse or alcoholism. I have never been suicidal or clinically depressed

All of these things are far more common that what I have been through, but I have evaded all of these maladies. I am one lucky SOB in this respect.

As far as the students, my awareness that many, if not most of them have difficult home lives, makes me less angry, and instead, more sympathetic towards their behavior and lack of focus. I try to encourage them as much as I can, and try to convince them that they can do better than they think they can. I also know not to take their negative focus personally. I try to be firm, but also encouraging towards them.


MaineSub 11-10-2018 01:06 PM

If I'm not careful, I could write a long reply... I think we can manage stress by deciding how we think about it. A couple of techniques I use...

For me personally, I relabel stress as energy and try to make it a positive. "Thankfully, things aren't the way they should be. That means I have a purpose and work to do."

"Look for the helpers" is one technique I learned to help kids cope during an emergency or traumatic event. It becomes about focus. I don't deny the realities you listed but I try to look at the many other realities.

A third grader confided to me this week that she could only do one activity this year because her Dad said "that's all we can afford." She spoke very matter-of-factly so we had a nice little discussion about how great it was that she could be so focused.

I know there are many broken adults--some who have contributed to the xenophobia and violence. One of the reasons I continue to be passionate about teaching and kids is "It's easier to build strong adults than it is to fix broken adults." I watch for ANY signs that I might be succeeding.

I also take some comfort in the fact that every generation tends to function quite differently than the previous. I think today's kids have some huge opportunities. Another third grader made a rather unsolicited impassioned speech to her classmates last week about how important it is that we work together to protect and save our world. (She considers it her mission to pick up any trash she sees on the floor--a nine-year-old environmentalist who does what she can!)

Lastly, it's important to remember we are not our feelings. For several years now, I've been campaigning on this point. "I am sad," is not allowed. "I feel sad," is okay. It sounds crazy at first. How we speak reflects (and contributes to) how we think. How we think largely determines how we feel.

mooba1 11-10-2018 12:00 PM

Subasaurus, Iím totally with you on the holiday stress. Ugggghhh, Iím so dreading the grating Christmas carols and the spend, spend, spend advertising. Most people look forward to the holidays. I canít wait for January 1st. <Mooba steps down from soapbox>

Getting back to the point of your post, one thing that has helped me in all areas of my life is to find the silver lining in every situation. For example, last year, I came out of my sub job at the end of the day to discover my car wouldnít start. Fortunately, I was in a parking lot instead of on the road, it was daytime, I had jumper cables, it wasnít raining, and my car was situated so that I could get a jump from someone else. Also, I had plenty of time to drive straight to Firestone and get a new battery. Thank you, universe!

Iíve been practicing being grateful for some years now, and itís become a habit. It has changed my life so much, and made me a much happier person. Of course, there are still the problems you mentioned, but maybe by sending out positivity, we can bring some light into the lives of those we teach, as well as our coworkers.

Do I do this every day? Nope, Iím not that evolved, but Iím trying. Well, most days Iím trying. I hope you can find some peace within yourself, Subasaurus. I always enjoy reading your posts. Hang in there.

Ima Teacher 11-10-2018 08:35 AM

I'm glad that I am in an area where those things aren't an issue. However, there are plenty of things that do negatively influence our children. The majority of our kids live in poverty. A huge number are affected by drug abuse among family members, and that's caused use to have a number of kids who aren't living with biological parents. For many families, education is not a major focus.

It is certainly frustrating.

Every day I do what I can to be a positive influence for my students while they are with me, and we stress positive work ethic and being a good person. That's the best I can do, and I'm okay with that. If it is out of my control, then so be it.

If you have been making changes you can, but stress is still weighing on you, it might be time to talk to a doctor. Medication or counseling could help.

subasaurus 11-10-2018 07:26 AM

The stress of the workplace and world in general admittedly have been getting to me.

I'd like to list three reasons I'm a bit on edge lately so you'll have a general understanding of the root causes. I'm not going into too much detail. I'm only being SUBJECTIVE. Interpret as you will.

1. Xenophobia seems on the rise in schools.
2. Violence seems on the rise in schools.
3. Complacency and poor judgment seem on the rise in schools.

I feel these big problems reflect the world we currently live in. I am in no way seeking political discussion, just some observations from the multiple districts I sub at. It would probably violate Proteacher guidelines to get into controversial off-topic debate, and rightfully so. Let's not do that.

My point:

It's hard to go through a day without feeling quite concerned about the state of the future for our children. I wish there was something I could do to keep students aware of the importance of self-care and avoiding toxic peer negativity.

And to top it all off the HOLIDAYS are coming soon.

Another major stress trigger for me.

If anyone has any stress coping tools let me know. I've tried changing my diet, music, more sleep, and exercise. Those seem to work a little.

Thanks for reading.

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