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Just for teachers..... – a reset for Rest!



In his book entitled “Rest”, Alex Soojung Kim Pang says that rest is a skill and one that can be learned and practised. He writes, “Work and rest aren’t opposites like black and white or good and evil. They’re more like different points on life’s wave; they are inextricably bound, each enhancing the other.


Teaching, for all its joys and privileges, is exhausting… and never has it been more exhausting than in what has probably been the most bizarre year any of us have ever experienced.


This short blog on rest is intended to encourage you to learn the habit of rest.

As we head into 2021, if you haven’t already done so, I want to encourage you to find a quiet space, grab a notebook and a cuppa, maybe put on your favourite chill music and… ”let yourself rest”. What follows are a few tried and tested simple starters to encourage you along the way.


1. Breathe… the simple power of breath – the power of breath is widely underestimated and has been somewhat of a revelation to me in recent years. Yoga, Pilates, Mindfulness and even the Military advocate the practice of learning to breathe effectively. The reality is that the way in which we breathe is a gift to our bodies, which regulates and provides the way for our body to connect to our emotions. By focusing on our breath, we find a way to slow down and to concentrate on the here and now. Yes, it can take time to cut through the distractions but a simple breathing exercise can be all it takes to ground you and regulate stress or distractions. Take a few minutes to breathe!

2. Congratulate yourself – however you feel, you have got through one of the most stressful and bizarre experiences of your life, one that has required incredible resilience, challenge from all directions and one in which you have constantly been there to care for the needs and anxieties of others while managing your own lives. Congratulate yourself, take a step back and be pleased with the good you have done and the difference you have made.

3. Gratitude - write a list of all that you are thankful for – since February, I set myself this year the task of cultivating a habit of gratitude by recording in a journal on a regular basis those things that I am grateful for. At the end of the year, as I look back I am so grateful for memories small and big that have contributed to the year that has been. In her blog Amy Morin, scientist and author of “13 things Mentally Strong people don’t do”, says that research reveals practising gratitude can have seven benefits on our overall well-being (see link below).

4. Reset your Rest - Do a check on yourself – consider your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual needs: much research and study has been done around the subject of rest and what is needed to sustain yourself, particularly when external stressors are pressing in.

Below is a simple free download to get you going - as you do so, here are a few key habits for your consideration,


a. Exercise, sleep, diet, water intake.

b. Meditation – take some time at regular intervals

c. Leisure – give yourself permission to switch off and re-charge

d. Social Connection with family and friends

e. Laugh ( the "belly aching sort!!)

f. Creativity (learn a new skill, a language, bake some bread.... just have fun! )


So…. as a new year and term commence, albeit different, make your "Reset Rest" plan – teachers love a plan!


Rest is not an added luxury but a basic necessity especially in order to avoid burnout in what continues to be a heightened stressful season.


Happy New Year to all the amazing teachers out there – stay well and safe!


If you would benefit from talking through things further, please use the "get in touch" form on my website for a free 15 minute consultation to discuss your needs.

https://www.denisesfcoachingintolife.com/


Resources:

Rest by Alex Soojung Kim Pang (book)


reset for rest 2021
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