Here are a few tips for managing stress:
- Exercise, get adequate rest and nutrition, seek prompt medical care for illnesses, cut down on caffeine-containing beverages and supplement vitamins when necessary.
- Learn to relax. Learning how to live in a stressful environment is an important skill. Try yoga or methods of meditating.
- Identify the events that are stressful to you.
- Place stress in a positive context and try to make it work in your favor. Do something constructive rather than being immobilized-action is the best antidote.
- Cultivate habits that reduce stress. Try to regularize your environment by arranging your schedule. Be in control. Set aside a period of "private" time for yourself.
- If you can't change a stressful situation, change how you react to it.
- Watch for symptoms that indicate you've exceeded your stress threshold and know your limits.
- If you decide that you need professional help, seek it! Many of today's therapists provide counseling in short-term behavior therapy methods to combat chronic stress and anxiety.
10 keys to preventing stress:
Prevention is the best "cure" for classroom stress
- Learn to recognize what upsets you. Avoid experiences that you know cause anxiety. If you can do something about a problem, do it; if not, don?t get frustrated trying to accomplish the impossible.
- Take stock of yourself. What do you like doing? What special skills do you have that you could develop more fully? What causes you the most grief and how could you lessen it?
- Set realistic goals for yourself. Don?t try the impossible, but if there are things you want to accomplish, decide to do them.
- Recognize your limitations. Do your best job, but don?t allow yourself to become frustrated when you don?t reach perfection. Allow for failure.
- Control your time. Recognize when lack of time becomes your enemy. Set priorities; try to anticipate and be prepared for problems.
- Talk to someone. Try to have a colleague in whom you can confide and from whom you can get feedback and new ideas.
- Concentrate on the positive. Rather than worrying, focus on the things that went right during your day.
- Stay healthy! Consider whether you need to make a change in eating, drinking, sleeping, or exercise habits.
- Give yourself a break. Learn to get away from your routine. Take short weekends out of town for a change of scenery and to get your mind off your job. Relieve the pressure of the day with short breaks. Try to find some time for yourself no matter how busy your schedule is.
- Spend time on a hobby. Having an avocation can do wonders. To be most effective, it should be something far removed from your teaching job.