As the holiday season approaches, there is more than just the hustle and bustle in the air. Stress and anxiety can be prevalent during the holiday season. While stress may have the most significant impact on adults, the effects can trickle down to students. It is essential to be mindful of our mental health and remember to de-stress during the holiday season, so our mood does not affect the people around us. Here are a few simple tips to help you.
Tip 1: Expect the Imperfections
Perfection is something that all teachers strive for every day. However, it’s essential to accept and to expect that you are not going to be perfect. No matter how long you spend on your lesson plans, how late you stay up grading papers, how cute your holiday decorations are, nothing is going to be perfect. Therefore, it doesn’t do you or your students any good if you stay up way too late and lose sleep. A lack of sleep can add to the amount of stress you feel because of the frustration you may get from not being alert. So, get some rest and accept that you are going to have to accept imperfections.
Tip 2: De-Stress with Focused Fun
When trying to de-stress, enjoy the simple things in life. To de-stress during the holiday season, you can incorporate fun activities into your classroom that are informative and season-appropriate. If you need fun holiday activities to do, here are a few:
De-Stress During the Holiday Season with STEM
Using STEM to build a gingerbread house can be a fun activity for students! Not only does this help you bring STEM into your classroom, but your students can have a friendly competition. You can “judge” students using a rubric that evaluates the overall structure as well as the visual appeal.
Use Procedural Christmas Writing to De-Stress
Writing can be a chore, but it can be fun to de-stress during the holiday season when you incorporate art into the writing activities. In addition to enjoying these holiday crafts, the practice of writing will help your students grow this vital skill. You can even use a writing workshop approach to help push your students and publish their papers using various technology tools.
Escape the Stress with a Digital Escape Room
Online games are all the rage, with COVI, D-19 rearing its ugly head. Challenge your students to “get out” with a Christmas themed Digital Escape Room. This activity is great for centers and early finishers and building background knowledge for a new unit on reindeer. If you keep your early finishers busy, you’ll have fewer distractions in the classroom, which will help you de-stress.
Tip 3: De-Stress During the Holidays with Mindful Eating
One of the worst (and best) parts of the holiday season is all the delicious food you get to eat. All this food is why it is vital during this time to practice mindful eating. Even though stress-eating can feel like the right thing to do, it will ultimately lead to guilt and more stress. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be complicated. Try to keep healthy snacks in your desk and drink plenty of water. While this may be difficult, you must commit to healthy eating with all the Christmas goodies making their rounds.
Tip 4: Keep Moving to De-Stress
Not only is it critical to commit to eating healthy, but you also need to make sure you keep moving. You can find ways to keep moving in your classroom by starting the day with a stretching exercise with your students. Another idea is to follow the Morning Meeting Plan with your students. Morning meetings get you and students focused and ready for the day in a very positive way.
Tip 5: Don’t Be Afraid to Say No
We all need to learn to say no, especially to de-stress during the holiday season. If you are already overwhelmed, do not take on another task, you don’t have time to do. Taking on more than you can swallow only adds more stress to you. Also, it guarantees that you will not be performing vital, potentially more important tasks to the best of your ability. Therefore, when someone asks you to do something, make sure you assess your situation and answer accordingly.
And if you need a little guidance with all the stress going on in your life, be sure to grab my digital journal. In it you receive a lot of tips and tricks to help you deal with the stresses of life. Just sign-up below.
The holiday season is stressful. If you add COVID-19 to the mix, it brings up even more anxiety. However, you can de-stress during the holiday season by following a few of these simple tips. Just remember, you’re worth it.