I used to work in financial services in London and one day I was struck by the pointlessness of it. I have no criticism of the sector, but for me I felt it didn’t enable me to grow as a person or enable other people to grow. I felt I lacked purpose and that’s a really big issue for me. Needless to say, I resigned and had the terrifying prospect of unemployment and not even any knowledge of what sector I wanted to work in.
I arranged work experiece in a few industries: education, publishing, PR… My first experience was in a primary school and I never looked back. I felt I came home. I had a tricky year arranging training and finding a route into teaching which was afforable for an adult with a mortgage, and then another year of training but it was totally worth it. I’ve been teaching several years now and have never looked back.
I never take work home with me. This is unheard of for a teacher, but I get to work the second the doors are unlocked and work, work, work until I leave. Then time I spend at home with my daughter and husband is actually time with them. It makes me feel really motivated to work as smartly and we’ll as possible. Obviously I think about work at home (how can you not?!) and know it’s simply not possible for everyone but I hear illy recommend it.
While I am no Davina I think some form of exercise is essential for body and spirit. Purpose in life is key to mental wellness for me. I always need goals and project whether they be long or short term. Develop a Growth Mindset – see yourself as someone who embraces challenge and is seeking to improve, regarding failure as just one of many attempts at learning.
Routine is essential for me. If it doesn’t have a thought out time slot that doesn’t work with my commitments as a teacher, mother, wife etc then it won’t happen.
Remember that wellness can come unintentionally from developing it in other people. In the same way giving someone a gift can often be better than receiving one, helping others develop wellness can massively boost your own. This is something I am so lucky in, as a primary teacher we aim to generate potential holistically in children rather than just academically. Think about ways you can generate wellness in others, little and often.
Accept that your best is good enough. It’s something my mother always said to us as children. She didn’t care if we failed every test if we could honestly say we’d done our best. I think we’re so tempted to beat ourselves up for not being good enough but when we measure ourselves against each other’s standards we’ll never achieve it anyway. Aiming to be the best possible version of yourself is enough and that can bring great satisfaction. When you realise this, it’s easier to bring wellness to yourself.
Prune things from your life that aren’t fulfilling or lack purpose so you’ve time for more enriching things.
Bite sized chunks!
Written by Joy Glibbington