Top 5 New Year’s Resolutions for Teachers

Top 5 New Year's Resolutions for Teachers

“CHEERS to a New Year…

…and another chance for us to get it right” (Oprah Winfrey).

Oprah’s got it right, but I’ve always believed you don’t have to wait for a new year to make needed changes. That said, there’s no better time than the New Year holiday to reflect on those aspects of teacher-life that sometimes get put on the back burner when you’re up to your neck in grading, planning, meetings, evaluations, and the gazillion other things teachers have slamming them every minute of the day. Keep these 5 teacher resolutions in mind to help refocus, shift priorities to what matters most, and stay sane for the second half of the school year.

1. Focus on the positive.

Whether it’s student skills and behaviors, resources (or a lack thereof), administrative support (again, or a lack thereof), think about what you DO have and build on that. Optimism is a choice: it’s not always easy, but it always makes things go better if you focus on the bright side.

2. Get schooled.

One of the best ways to stay positive is to keep learning. Read a few books on new teaching strategies. Attend a conference or workshop to get new ideas and network with other educators looking to initiate positive changes in their teaching. Take graduate courses to move yourself up the pay scale (an investment that pays you back every year afterward).

3. Set boundaries.

Bring more balance to your work-life “balance.” Eat better, exercise more, and rest more. Sometimes the only way to do this is to say NO to requests for your time and energy more often. Meal prep and check your calendar on weekends so you know what’s coming. Be present where you are at the time: both your family and your students deserve this.

4. Change things up.

Try some new activities in your classes. Rearrange your classroom (students LOVE getting to help with this). Eat lunch with teachers in the building you don’t see that often.

5. Get up, dress up, and show up smiling.

Set your alarm a little earlier so you’re not as rushed getting to school in the morning. Wear something that makes you feel confident and put together (pick up a few new accessories or shop your closet for pieces you haven’t worn in a while). Smile when you hit the building: science has shown that the simple act of smiling makes you, and those around you, feel better (even when you didn’t feel like smiling in the first place).

my new year's resolution is simply to remember to write the new year

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Want to know a secret that can help you accomplish all 5 of those resolutions?

Fake it ’til you make it.

For real. The more you fake attention, balance, a positive attitude, innovation, creativity, friendliness, patience, and confidence, the more it becomes a habit. Have a wonderful 2019, friends!

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