(Photo credit: bottled_void)

You’ve probably been advised at least 200 times about the importance of self-care as a teacher. If it wasn’t your CMA at Institute, it was your MTLD, or maybe your school leadership. “Make sure to do things for yourself,” they preached. “You have to make time for you.”

If you’re like any teacher I know, you acknowledge the importance of self-care, but completely and totally neglect it.

I get it. There is no time.

We can promise ourselves that we’ll recuperate during summer or convince ourselves that Friday happy hours are a form of self-care, but there are better forms of self-care. Think of self-care as complementing the Friday happy hour!

Stress is bad for your body, bad for your mind, and ultimately, bad for your students. Research cortisol if you don’t believe me.

By having small habits or rituals that you do on a consistent basis, you can reduce your stress levels, increase your energy, and remind yourself that, yes, you are a human, and not just a behavior management robot.

Here are five rituals that I incorporate daily that take less than 10 minutes each: