In a recent comment on an ExchangeEveryDay post about the importance of play for children in combatting pandemic stress, Shoshanah Findling writes, “I believe the same can be said for adults. A lot of us feel numb, drained or even traumatized by the last 18 months…We lost a part of ourselves and don’t even realize what we are missing. Finding that spark…calls for courage, creativity and connection. All things that bring joy and affection will help us heal.”
The Exchange Reflections, “Preventing Teacher Burnout,” based on an article by Ellen Drolette, offers ideas for staff to discuss together (or people to reflect on by themselves) to discover ways to find their “spark,” as Shoshanah calls it.
Drolette writes that the word “self-care” has been suggested so much as an antidote to burnout that often people misunderstand what it really means. “Self-care is not about making time for a shower without children barging in…”
Drolette describes self-care this way: “Focusing on some key strategies and making simple plans in each of the following areas will help in designing approaches to tackling burnout. Deep, thoughtful, intentional self-care is in fact self-preservation for a professional in our field.” Drolette labels the key areas as, “Attitude; Play; Environment; Optimism and Positivity; Use Your Voice; Mental Health; Boundaries.”
Exchange Reflections are designed to help a team of people meet in-person or live online to think deeply together about a topic using an article from Exchange magazine as a guide. Included are discussion questions to help guide reflections, as well as a Making Commitments idea sheet to help prompt ideas into action. For your convenience, Exchange Reflections are available in PDF format and you can download immediately on your desktop.
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