EXPLORE SELF-CARE FOR EDUCATORS
In a job where you are constantly giving and pouring into others (on top of managing your life outside of work), it can be easy to let your self-care fall to the bottom of the priority list. In an effort to help you reconnect with your inner-self, this week we will provide daily tools and opportunities to recharge, refresh, and restore.
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THE BIG SELF-CARE QUESTIONS
How can you care for yourself better, and why don’t you?
Why is modeling a healthy lifestyle for your family and students important?
FOCUS ON JOY
Do you know how to tap into joyful motivation and a playful flow each day? You might know what brings you joy or maybe you need some ideas. It could look like reading for pleasure, spending time in nature, being creative, taking a relaxing Epsom salt bath, or even embracing your inner Julia Child and whipping up a new recipe! Whatever feeds your soul, brings a smile to your face, or gives you a boost of energy, proactively dedicate the time to do it! Your future self will thank you, no matter how much or little time you spend on your activity.
BE MORE MINDFUL
Mindfulness is the practice of bringing your attention to the present and, although it sounds simple, we as a society aren’t super great at it. For example, have you ever checked Facebook with Netflix playing in the background as you were cooking dinner and having a conversation with a family member?! Check out a fun take on mindfulness, the 5 Senses Exercises, or 3 Step Mindfulness to begin or continue your mindfulness journey.
MAKE TIME TO MEDITATE
Often times what comes to mind are images of someone sitting on a hilltop cross-legged, thumb to the index finger, “ooohhhhhmmm”-ing their stress away. While that is not necessarily incorrect, it definitely is not the only way to practice meditation!
Don’t let the myths of meditation keep you from trying it. The benefits are backed by science, it can be a religious or secular practice, and you have to find what works for you. There are many types of meditation, but often starting with a short guided meditation is a great way to ease into a practice. Try apps like Insight Timer, Headspace, or Calm to help you get started meditating!
- Once you choose your mediation, keep these tips in mind:
- Sit up straight.
- Close your eyes or fix your attention on an object.
- Know that you will have thoughts float through your mind, just come back to the meditation.
MOVE TOWARDS HAPPINESS
Movement doesn’t have to be a painful 2-hour workout that leaves you unable to lift your arms to wash your hair or running miles and miles training for a marathon that leaves your legs like jell-0. If that’s your thing, go for it, but if you’re consistently suffering through those workouts you may want to change it up. Also, if you’re not already throwing heavy things around and running for hours on end, now may not be the time to start.**
If you’re looking for something gentle to get the blood flowing, ideally, it’s something that you enjoy doing like dancing in the basement, wrangling for floor space with your dog while practicing yoga or stretching, or even going for a walk in nature (don’t forget to practice social distancing!). If you need some additional ideas, think back to what brought you joy as a kiddo and recreate it!
Thanks and appreciation, also known as gratitude, is a technique that when done intentionally can improve your health and change your brain. Finding a practice that works best for you is key! An easy way to begin is by identifying three things you are thankful for and either writing them down in a gratitude journal, placing them in a gratitude jar, or simply saying them out loud.
Here are a few gratitude prompts if you need somewhere to start. If you’re looking for something more in-depth or challenging, try writing a legacy letter to your loved ones or explore your purpose and gain clarity and perspective by writing your own obituary (it’s not as dark as it seems).
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Thank you and Adventure on! – The TomTod Team