I was reading this article this morning, while having my second coffee, and it made me think about my own experiences with teacher burnout. I myself have experience this and have seen it happen to many colleagues. We get tired and frustrated, much as our students do.
Near the end of any given term, the pressure ramps up and we get tired and stressed. It is a natural response. This is a form of burnout, but one easily solved with a week of sitting at home and sleeping in. This article talks about the big summer break resets, but for me misses the mark slightly and does not address one of the best tools available to us; change.
Change. Yes Change. Life Change. Career Change. Lifestyle Change. Change is a great tool for combating burnout. Ask to teach something new. Change your personal style. Change schools. Change roles. I have only been in the teaching game for 5 years, but have observed that a simple change, if embraced, can negate burnout and actually reverse it. Every educator I have met chose this life because at one stage we were passionate about teaching. We loved our jobs. We loved our careers. In our hearts we always will. Change can be a means to rekindle that feeling and light the fire instead of burning out.
For me, change comes in the form of technology and exploring how I can use it in the classroom. When I feel the weight of teaching on my shoulders, I escape into technology. I seek out something new, and attempt to implement change. Someone told me recently that I am an “agent of change”. I have no clue what that means, but will assume that it is a good thing.