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Teachers’ Day, celebrated on the 5th of September, is the perfect opportunity to celebrate all teachers and the immense contribution they make to society. Teaching is a noble and rewarding profession, but it comes with its fair share of challenges. The gruelling responsibilities of the job, strict regulations and the duty to nurture young minds can sometimes lead to extreme work pressure. Even when you have a lot on your plate, you should not neglect your mental health. In a recent survey of more than 30,000 educators by the American Federation of Teachers, more than 75% of respondents said they did not have enough staff to do the work, and 78% said they were often physically and emotionally exhausted at the end of the day.
It should be a priority for everyone to take care of their inner and emotional health. It is necessary to engage in activities that calm the mind and soul. It’s not easy to be a teacher, and with all the work that has to be done, the job can sometimes become too demanding and can take a toll on your well-being. (Also read: Teachers’ Day 2023: 6 ways to say ‘thank you’ to your teachers )
“Teachers must prioritize their mental well-being because it has an impact on their students”, according to Aashmeen Munjal, Ontologist, Mental Health and Relationship Expert. She further shared with HT Lifestyle a few suggestions for coping with work pressure.
1. When work gets wrapped up on time, a huge amount of stress passes away. Teachers need to prioritize duties, develop schedules, and set aside time for breaks. This will help them to have better time management.
2. Who says “self-care is unethical, it’s fundamental”? Teachers need to rejuvenate from time to time. They should make the most of their free time by reading, gardening, jogging or relaxing.
3. Integrating mindful meditation and relaxation practices into their daily routine as an educator, increases focus and reduces stress. It can be achieved by engaging in activities like deep breathing exercises, meditation, or even brisk walks. A lot of stress can be relieved by practising the same.
4. To avoid feeling drained, it is advised that teachers maintain an organized workspace and make effective use of planners and digital calendars.
“These are just some of the techniques that can help to improve mental health for teachers in battling work pressure. As long as teachers are willing to learn and flourish professionally, learning never ceases. They ought to never forget the accomplishments they have made. Being in this line of work can occasionally be exhausting. They should always keep their thoughts intact and keep a positive attitude, even when situations are tough. A teacher should always remember that by taking care of her mental health, she will prove herself to be more committed,” says Aashmeen.
“The lives of children seem similar to a spider’s web. Through their orientation and guidance, teachers help students unwind the complicated network. Teachers encourage pupils to develop their emotional and psychological well-being in addition to their academic skills. The widespread use of all facets being digital has certain adverse impacts on students’ mental health. The role of educators in cultivating pupils’ healthy mental health grows. Students’ abilities are enhanced when teachers cultivate a positive attitude towards their charges. Teachers can shape, boost, and nourish the hearts and brains of their students,” says Aashmeen.
She, added, “Students embrace empathy, trust, and positive interaction through fostering strong teacher-student connections, which establishes the foundation for their emotional development and perseverance. A teacher must have faith in their pupils’ knowledge while motivating them to discover their strengths. Such praises support a child’s optimism and stimulate a good sense of dignity. The ability to solve problems helps youngsters retain excellent mental health throughout their lives since life is full of obstacles.”
“Teachers need to practice inclusion and work to mitigate stigma. Respecting cultural diversity in the classroom promotes a healthy mental environment. Instead of being considered a taboo subject, talking about mental health should be encouraged. This promises the pupils that asking for help does not indicate weakness but rather strength. Overall, instructors serve as role models by encouraging students to have ambitions and believe in their abilities. This optimism has a significant bearing on a child’s future achievement and mental health, ” concluded Aashmeen.
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