Show yourself grace like you show others
Show yourself grace. Teachers are some of the most compassionate, forgiving people I have ever met. They nurture and care for classrooms full of kids daily. Teachers love and support their colleagues. They freely give others second chances and the benefit of the doubt. However, teachers are notoriously hard on themselves.
Give yourself permission to:
We all make mistakes, and it is okay. Turns out students are very forgiving when you do make them, especially if you admit it. It makes you human, and students like humans. Next time you make a mistake, don’t dwell on it. Accept it, correct it if you can and move on.
When you make a mistake, model for your students how to try again. You are teaching them resilience and learning that yourself. We tell our students that mistakes show they are trying and learning. It is important that we set realistic expectations for ourselves.
Feel your true emotions
Teachers are not robots. Sometimes we have a bad day. Accept that you are not having a good day and go with it. How you respond to those feelings can be a teachable moment. Do you want students who cover up their emotions or to learn how to function in spite of those emotions? They learn emotional behavior from watching it.
Be a hot mess
Some days you just don’t have your act together no matter how much you try. Maybe you left your laptop at home, forgot your lunch, locked your keys in the car. Students do not expect perfection, and when they see you are not perfect, it gives them permission to not be perfect either which relieves a lot of stress from all of you. Just admit to them what is going on and laugh with them about it.
Remember to show yourself grace. Next time you are beating yourself up, remember that you are a teacher doing the best you can and that is good enough.