I became a teacher because I loved learning, children, and Jesus. I felt called to impact the hearts and minds of my students and inspire the next generation.
I had a passion for teaching.
But, after just a few short years in the classroom, I realized that I often felt overwhelmed. I was both mentally and physically exhausted. I easily became frustrated with my students, co-workers, and circumstances at school. I even started to dread going to school in the morning.
I wasn’t sure why I felt this way. I still loved learning, children, and Jesus. I still felt called to impact the hearts and minds of my students and inspire the next generation.
And yet... I felt burnt out.
Can you relate?
I have found that most teachers struggle with "teacher burnout" at some point in their careers, even Christian teachers. Whether you’ve felt this way in the past, are currently struggling with teacher burnout, or worry you will encounter it in the future, there is hope. By implementing a few strategies and by the grace of God, I overcame teacher burnout... and so can you.
If you need some encouragement, consider these practices that helped reignite my passion for teaching.
Keep a healthy perspective: Set realistic expectations for yourself and your students. If everything on your to-do list does not get done in a day, it is okay. Be mindful of self-imposed pressures that may unnecessarily weigh you down as you strive for excellence in your classroom.
Ask for help: When you are struggling with responsibilities or overwhelming feelings, don’t let pride, fear, or embarrassment prevent you from seeking help from a reliable co-worker or respected mentor. CEAI can also serve as a resource for you when you need extra support and guidance.
Lean on community: Surround yourself with supportive co-workers and other Christian educators on a regular basis. The encouragement a healthy community provides serves as a powerful and necessary resource to prevent and overcome teacher burnout.
Vent in a safe place: Everyone needs a release at some point. You can bring your concerns to the Lord, confide in a trusted friend or family member, and/or participate in stress-relieving activities. Letting go of stress and negative emotions can help you move forward with purpose.
Focus on your assignment: As Christian educators, we can continually remind ourselves of our divine calling: to impact our students for His glory. When we focus on this, daily obstacles and frustrations seem less and less significant.
Remember whose you are: Isaiah 43:1 says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine” (NLT). Remember, you belong to a powerful, almighty God who is with you every step of the way. He will guide, empower, and intercede on your behalf. Stand in this truth, and let Him be your strength as you inspire the next generation.
Michele Holiday served in public schools for 16 years in a variety of roles, including teacher, behavior specialist, ESE specialist, and district behavioral program specialist. She currently works as a behavior strategist for Feed Their Needs, LLC, a professional development company she founded that provides classroom and behavior management consultations and workshops for educators.
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