4 Self Care Tips for the BUSY Special Educators

Is it just me or is teaching the special education classroom EXHAUSTING? I spend the day making split second decisions, managing behaviors, oh and teaching when I have a chance! By the end of the day I'm often EXHAUSTED and find myself changing into pajamas and climbing into bed before the sun has even gone down.

Self care is so much more than pampering yourself. It's about reconnecting and finding joy so you can spread that back into your classroom and I'm going to tell you, the more I have reconnected with myself, the happier my classroom has become. Over the past year I have really started to value self care, but I'm not a big yoga-going, guided mediation-participating kind of teacher. I'm still a teacher and I'm BUSY, but I've found that doing small acts of self care for myself have really changed my day to day outlook. I find myself cheerier and more prepared for work than I did before my small acts of self care. So here are 4 tips for Self Care for the BUSY Special Education Teacher.

1. Meditation
Ok, I know I just said I'm not the meditation-participating teacher, but hear me out. Meditation doesn't have to be all ohms and meditation bells. My form of meditation occurs daily on my drive home. I'll often turn the radio off for a portion of the drive and be alone with my thoughts. I practice taking some deep breaths and reflect on the day in my classroom. I find this to be a positive self reflection time. I often problem solve things that aren't going well in my classroom and return the next day with a plan to tackle problems.

2. Find your Relaxation
Again, I'm not a yoga-goer, but I am an avid fan of massage. I also love a nice, long bubble bath. These are great ways to unwind after a long day or week. Massage and bubble baths aren't your thing? That's ok, find your thing! Treat yourself to a manicure, enjoy a cup of coffee while it is still hot, read a good book, binge a show on Netflix. It's all about finding a way to pamper yourself.

3. Make a "No Work" Day
Choose a day of the week and make it your "no work day". Plan on bringing NOTHING home from your classroom to work on that night. Make it a night to reconnect with friends or family. I tend to make mine on Thursday every week because it's easier for me to stick to it when I keep it the same day every week. If it's easier for you to move the day around from week to week based on what's going on at school, do that. But I really do suggest you take one day a week to leave your school work at school and spend the evening doing things you enjoy!

4. Get a Hobby
So many of us get wrapped up in the day to day work in our classrooms that we forget we have passions and things we enjoy that are not teaching related. Take time to reconnect to those hobbies. Take that hike, plan that trip, learn to make craft beer. Whatever your passion is, do it! You need to be "more than a teacher" in order to be the best teacher you can.

Self care is not selfish and I believe that all of us can engage in small acts of self care on a daily basis to be a better teacher. I have found that when I take the time to do the things I love and spend time with those who are important to me, I am more recharged and better able to serve the students in my classroom. I challenge you to choose one act of self care to engage in this week. I bet you're going to feel recharged and better able to reach the students in your classroom once you've taken care of yourself!

1 comment

  1. I walk after school, and try to read at bedtime. There is always a book on my side table. Scrapbooking is also a time to relax.


Back to Top