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How Small Changes Can Make a Big Difference in Teaching

In teaching there is always so much to do, so why do we want to be worrying about wellbeing as well?  With over a fifth of teachers leaving the profession in the first two few years of their career and stress and workload being cited as the main reasons for leaving- a conversation about wellbeing is essential.

I think the key to good wellbeing in education is not a huge change in routine but small considered changes that can build to make a big change.  Lots of small steps can make a big difference.  With greater demands and expectation needs to come greater self-care for educators’ wellbeing and for all of those in our profession. 

Small changes that can make a difference can be as simple as making sure that you have some time for yourself each day- that may be pausing to have a drink and not doing anything else at the same time, it may be having a long shower or bath, going for a walk, or reading a chapter of a book you want to read.  It doesn’t have to be big things- small things can make a big difference.  If you started to add those small things up, you would notice a difference.  It is easy in teaching to work non-stop, to run to the bathroom between lessons or to realise you have got to the end of the teaching day without drinking very much.  This way of working, without looking after your basic needs is exhausting- which is why finding small windows of time for yourself can help. 

Mindfulness meditation is a proven way to reduce stress and improve both physical and mental health.  Researchers have found that mindfulness significantly helps reduces anxiety, depression, and stress. Other studies have found mindfulness can help to reduce pain and boost the immune system. 

If you are really struggling with your wellbeing please speak to someone you trust, or your doctor.  You can also get help from the Samaritans by calling 116 123 or from Education support by calling 08000 562 561.


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