As teachers and leaders if we don’t look after ourselves we really can’t do a good job leading or teaching colleagues/children!
It is Mindfulness March – are you Mind Full or Mindful?
Does your to-do list seem never ending? Do you ever find yourself caught up in cycles of stress, anxiety or negative thinking?
Does life ever feel overwhelming, or a struggle?
Teachers play a critical role in nurturing children’s well-being, but no one would argue with the fact that teaching is stressful. Stress and burnout amongst teachers is a major concern for schools, affecting the quality of education offered and incurring increased costs in recruiting and retaining teachers.
Increasing levels of stress for teachers can also be a problem for students. Students learn better in a climate that is calm, kind and less stressful.
Mindfulness meditation has been proven to help teachers cope better with stress whilst also making the classroom environment more productive for learning. It can help with:
- Reduction in stress, burnout and anxiety, including a reduction in days off work and feelings of task and time pressure; improved ability to manage thoughts and behaviour; an increase in coping skills, motivation, planning and problem solving, and taking more time to relax.
- Better mental health, including less distress, negative emotion, depression and anxiety.
- Greater wellbeing, including life satisfaction, self-confidence, self-efficacy, self-compassion and sense of personal growth.
- Increased kindness and compassion to others, including greater empathy, tolerance, forgiveness and patience, and less anger and hostility.
- Better physical health, including lower blood pressure, declines in cortisol (a stress hormone) and fewer reported physical health problems.
- Increased cognitive performance, including the ability to pay attention and focus, make decisions, creativity, reaction speeds and respond flexibly to challenges.
- Enhanced job performance, including better classroom management and organisation, greater ability to prioritise, to see the whole picture, to be more self-motivated and autonomous, to show greater attunement to students’ needs, and achieve more supportive relationships with them.
March is the month to celebrate the benefits of mindfulness
To truly believe in something, we have to experience it. So how about setting yourself a mini challenge and try connecting with your breath in any moment over the next week when you feel overwhelmed? See if you feel more grounded and more able to prioritise your workload, and lifeload, afterwards. Three minutes will do the job; who hasn’t got three minutes to spend on themselves? Think more mindful, less mind full.
If you are interested in learning new Mindfulness exercises, meditation routines, or becoming a certified Mindfulness practitioner we have a range of courses that can help you to stay calm.