Tis’ the Season To Be Stressed….Fa La La La La

At some point in my time on this earth I saw a chart that outlined the different levels of stress for educators by month and I distinctly remember noticing that this month and next were the highest.  The chart rose to the top levels of stress during this section of the school year.  I always remember that when this time of year arrives and I’m wondering what the heck is going on!?  Why is everyone so stressed out and better yet, what I can I do to help?  It’s important to remember that regardless of the pressures of a life in education, this time of year is stressful and busy for everyone.

  • Weekend recovery time tends to disappear as families are gearing up for different holidays and family events, so Monday’s are a lot of fun!
  • It’s that strange time of year where everyone is amped up, the weather is changing, some families are traveling and a lot of thematic units come to a head.
  • Research shows that students are as stressed, if not more, by the holidays.  This is, in turn, raises our stress levels.

So we know it’s going to happen.  The better use of energy is to think about how can it be addressed or helped?  You’ll never completely remove stress from someone’s plate because it is very individual in some cases, but there are a lot of little things that can aid in survival for sure!

  • Have fun…and help others to do the same.
  • Listen – Just being there can be a help
  • Try to Help – Go out of your way to support teachers and staff throughout this season
  • Encourage healthy activities and provide them for staff when you can.
  • Intentionally plan stress relieving activities for your staff.


Additional Resources:

Stress Levels of School Administrators and Teachers in November and January by Robert Moody  and James Barrett 

Teacher Stress By Ken Mrozek

All of below from Teachers Count at http://www.teacherscount.org/best/stressmanagement.shtml

Stress Management for Teachers

APA Help Center—The Road to Resilience
In this online brochure, the American Psychological Association provides information and ideas for building resilience to a general audience.
APA Help Center—Six Myths about Stress
Here, the American Psychological Association dispels six common myths about how stress is experienced and successfully managed.
Coping with Stress—Tips for Educators
Author Leah Davies offers a concise list of stress-management tips for teachers.
Education World—From Chaos to Coherence: Managing Teacher Stress
This informative article includes an overview of how stress works, input from experts, and tips on how teachers can control their stress.
Education World—How Do You Spell ‘Stress Relief’?
This article explores the topic of teacher stress and describes relaxation techniques, including breathing exercises, provided by professionals who run stress-management workshops.
Mayo Clinic—Stress Center
The Mayo Clinic’s online Stress Center provides information and resources on stress management from a medical perspective.
NEA Today—Stressed Out
NEA Today discusses reasons for the unusually high level of stress among educators and offers advice for keeping stress under control both at work and at home.
Psychology Today—Teaching Teachers to De-stress
This Psychology Today article reports on a scientific study wherein three groups of teachers were given different stress-relief interventions.
Teachers.net—Teacher Feature: Stress
Author and teacher Joy Jones discusses how journaling helps her manage stress and shares other ideas as well.

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