Balancing the emotional demands of teaching with other personal pressures is central to the teacher’s craft and vital to professional sustainability.
The complexity of the job requires the continual shifting of attention throughout the day, which keeps the nervous system aroused. In addition, teachers frequently deal with students who have difficult behaviours, parents with challenging attitudes, changes to curriculum and increasing demands from bureaucracies.
Mindfulness practice is the easiest and most reliable way to calm the nervous system, reverse stress patterns, increase positivity and develop resilience.
Teachers who learn and apply mindfulness in their own lives: • Improve their physical and mental health through better stress management/self care.
• Have a calmer, more focused presence in the classroom.
• Re-kindle enthusiasm and motivation for teaching. • Manage complex demands with increased calmness, skill and compassion.
“My advice for the year is to practice the art of mindfulness. A teacher’s job is so demanding and draining, in ways those outside the profession even imagine; stress and even burnout may be just around the corner. Learn to develop the skill of mindfulness and life will feel balanced.” Editorial, Australian Teacher, No 1, 2011
“My attitude and mind-set can be picked up by the students. When I present myself as a balanced and mindful teacher, the students will respond in a calmer manner. "