Coping with stress as an early years practitioner
Working in childcare can be tiring especially working long hours for not many pennies and then having to go home and do it all over again, but then you can reduce it by not ignoring it and doing well to manage it
Learning to manage stress is essential, not only to be effective in the workplace, but also to protect your own health. As an early years educator, carer, you may often experience stress in the workplace and there are many ways you can manage stress, you need to find out what strategies best works for you,
In this article we will be looking at the
- What is stress ,
- Red flag of stress
- 13 effective mechanism for stress relieve
What is stress
Stress is the body’s reaction to any change that requires an adjustment or response. The body reacts to these changes with physical, mental, and emotional responses. Stress is a normal part of life. You can experience stress from your environment, your body, and your thoughts.
Mental health foundation defines stress as the feeling of being overwhelmed or unable to cope with mental or emotional pressure
Even positive life changes such as a promotion, a mortgage, or the birth of a child produce stress, when the stress level is manageable or when we have developed effective coping mechanisms, the impact of stress on our lives is minimal. Unfortunately, we do not always recognize the degree of impact.
As much as educating is your passion, the fact that you love children and you love your job does not make stress inevitable so you must be head on prepared and be able to manage it so as to effectively carry out your responsibilities and as well stay healthy
Negligence to stress is not only limited to you it can also be harmful to the children, pupils or young people in your care:
- anxiety may be felt by the children, causing them distress
- lack of concentration or difficulty in thinking rationally could put children at risk
- suffering depression or panic attacks while children are in your care could have serious consequences.
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The following are the warning signs of stress you should never ignore as it wears down the body’s natural defenses, leading to a variety of physical symptoms such as;
- Dizziness or a general feeling of “being out of it”
- General aches and pains.
- Increase in or loss of appetite.
- Muscle tension in neck, face or shoulders.
- Problem sleeping
- Racing heart.
- Cold and sweaty palms.
- Tiredness, exhaustion.
- Weight gain or loss.
- Upset stomach, diarrhea
Effective mechanism for stress relief
People can learn to manage stress and lead happier, healthier lives. You may want to begin with the following tips:
- Keep a positive attitude.
- Accept that there are events that you cannot control.
- Be assertive instead of aggressive. Assert your feelings, opinions, or beliefs instead of becoming angry, defensive, or passive.
- Learn and practice relaxation techniques; try meditation, yoga, .
- Exercise regularly. Your body can fight stress better when it is fit.
- Eat healthy, well-balanced meals.
- Learn to manage your time more effectively.
- Set limits appropriately and say no to requests that would create excessive stress in your life.
- Make time for hobbies and interests.
- Get enough rest and sleep. Your body needs time to recover from stressful events.
- Don’t rely on alcohol, drugs, or compulsive behaviors to reduce stress.
- Seek out social support. Spend enough time with those you love.
- Seek treatment with a psychologist or other mental health professional trained in stress management or biofeedback techniques to learn more healthy ways of dealing with the stress in your life.
Even when inspiring a life long blooming journeys of learner, remember to live healthy and stay healthy