Work-Life Balance Crisis! 5 Stress Busting Tips

23rd December 2022

Research says that 85% of teachers enter the teaching profession to make a difference in the student's life.

But how many can make the switch when it comes to changing their own lives? You desperately want to Netflix and chill, but your weekends go more like Netflix and grade. If your weekend also comprises swamped paper correction and being dumped under lesson planning, then you might look for ways to maintain a work-life balance as a teacher.

During the pandemic, when the education industry faced a paradigm shift with virtual learning, many educators could not make this switch. This is when lockdown burnout and stress came into the picture, if you are also one of those who find maintaining work-life balance when teaching online from home tricky, here are some ways to help you out.

5 Tips For Better Work-Life Balance

Here are 5 tips to nail your work-life balance mode:
 

  1. Prioritize Your To-Do List

    As a teacher, you might have a lot on your plate that might give rise to unnecessary stress and burnout. Thus, you need to prioritize your to-do list and ask yourself, does that assignment absolutely needs to be marked now or can it wait a few days? You can achieve balance by deciding what is meaningful for your students at that particular moment and what you can humanly commit.
     

    How Teachers Spend Their Work Day
     
    Source: mediaroom.scholastic.com

    Furthermore, you also need to decide what you can put aside for the time being and focus on more vital things other than your role as a teacher. When you can prioritize your personal and professional interests, you work more efficiently as it makes sure that your individuality is not lost in the shuffle.
     

  2. Embrace Blended Learning

    With the advent of technology, gone are the days when learning was only limited to the four walls of a classroom. The 'new normal' education has taken quite a detour towards the virtual realm and hence you can divide your lesson delivery partially digitally.

    Digital learning has numerous benefits both for students and teachers alike as it offers flexibility and is more convenient. Moreover, when you are looking for a work-life balance, hybrid learning can just be the option for you as you can plan and share your lessons, offer feedback, and monitor progression all through digital platforms.
     

  3. Delegate Tasks

    As a teacher, you might often feel that everything is high up on your priority list and it might sometimes be difficult to select some tasks over others. However, if you desire to have a healthy mind and body then you must learn to delegate your tasks to your students, fellow teachers, or even staff members if required.
     

    job-related stress and symptoms of depression
     
    Source: cnbc.com

    Additionally, when you are delegating tasks think about what and how much can the other person handle and divide accordingly. Doing this will allow you to focus on your personal interests and you will be in a much happier space physically and mentally.
     

  4. Set Time Related Boundaries

    One of the most vital steps to having a healthy work-life balance is actually creating one. When you are working as a teacher, you might sometimes become so engrossed that you walk the extra mile to overstrain yourself. This has to stop immediately if you want to keep working in the future. Create strict work hours and stick to them even if you have to schedule last-minute meetings or extra-curricular activities.
     

    Teachers Work Patterns
     
    Source: bls.gov

    Avoid procrastination as it will only lead to further delay and exert more pressure towards the end. Manage your time efficiently so that you get everything done on time without having to compromise on your personal space. Having strict hours also means figuring out when you clock out from school. There might be some days when you feel like constantly putting your students' needs over yours which is not necessarily a bad thing, but it can be emotionally draining and cause emotional burnout. So, to save yourself from such disasters, deal with all your needs within school hours and clock out freely.
     

  5. Remember Your Worth

    Your work is as important as your well-being and hence you must learn to value yourself. Being a teacher does not mean that you will always have to overcommit even when your health is at stake. So, learn to say no when required and put yourself first to rejuvenate your strength and vigor. Remember that you have a life outside your classroom and take some time off to live that life.

    Furthermore, when you feel like things are getting way out of hand, raise your voice and ask for help. this might be talking to your seniors about a particular issue or waving a red flag to your administrators. Sometimes it might also be that you might need that tad bit of push, support, or motivation to keep things going. Whenever you feel things are beyond your control and there is only so much a teacher can handle, ask for help.

The Final Takeaway

You can only be a role model for your students if you are the best version of yourself. And ultimately to achieve this, you need to spend time on yourself, with yourself. Whether you are a newbie with an international TEFL certificate or have been teaching for several years, work-life balance is something everyone deserves.

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Written By: Sheetal Sharma      

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In academic collaboration with:

Pebble Hills University  London School Of Teaching and Training City College Birmingham Cambridge English AAHEA AAHEA TQ