Why is it so many of us are only too happy to talk about our ailments..."I've got a sore knee" or "My shoulders are tight", yet we are a little more hesitant about saying things such as "I'm feeling overwhelmed with the workload", or "My sleeping patterns are not good".
I have just spent three days presenting at a major educational conference around aspects associated with developing emotional wellbeing in youth and teachers/leaders.
Some of the comments I heard from teachers and leaders have ranged from "I don't want to look weak" and "I've just go to toughen-up and get on with it". Often what occurs is that we shut-down and think we are the only one who is feeling stressed. We don't talk about how we are feeling, and can tend to think that by working harder we will get on top of things and feel better.
In 2016, NZEI carried-out teacher and leader wellbeing surveys. Their findings were in some ways alarming, and in other ways affirming of what educators have been thinking for some time.
The image below shows in a typical week how often teachers feel stressed at work.
To add to this data, Principals had 70% higher rates of burnout and more than double the rate of stress compared to the general population! (NZEI, 2016).
The next diagram shows teacher coping strategies when feeling stressed, anxious or depressed.
It's not ok to bury our heads in the sand and think it will all just magically go-away...
But it IS ok to not be OK!
Where might you or your staff sit on the ladder below?
Are they stuffed, barely operating, often sick and showing signs of exhaustion and depression? Maybe they are in survival mode, operating in a zombie-like state, just going through the motions?
Perhaps they are starting to stumble, not being their normal-self, maybe forgetful, stressed and tired?
Or are they steady, getting things done, in their normal-state and feeling balanced?
They may even be strong, leading others, full of energy and displaying a positive mindset.
So where do you or your staff sit in relation to these levels?
Furthermore, what are you actively doing either for yourself or in your work context to support people to level-up?
I have the privilege of working alongside individuals through my coaching programme and groups of people through my training programme in supporting them to level-up and become strong again. Contact me for a free 30 minute discovery skype call to chat through your needs and look at options for support.