Knowing when to stop caring is an essential survival skill
“I don’t care,” said John, deliberately raising his voice so that anyone within earshot is sure to hear. Mr. Keane, her manager for the year, continued to speak quietly and seemed to perform a miracle just by continuing the conversation. The longer the conversation lasted, the more John’s tone changed.
Healthcare works, and luckily, it comes naturally to most in our profession. Those who don’t care represent that small but powerful minority that gives us all a bad name.
The problem with nursing is that it’s not easy to turn on and off. Everything still we have to.
It takes years in the classroom to learn that discerning when to care and when not to care is a fundamental survival skill in this career. A large part of teacher burnout is a lack of clarity as to exactly when to care, what to worry about, and how much to care. There is certainly a place in teacher training for a Teflon module, but while waiting for its implementation, here is the opportunity to self-assess.
Do we have to worry about the quality of what we prepare and deliver? It is a categorical yes. Keeping abreast of recent developments in our fields is a responsibility we have a professional duty to fulfill. Appropriate professional development has a ripple effect on the importance we place on our work, which in turn affects levels of engagement. To be negligent in continuing professional development is to do our colleagues and our students a disservice. For all of these reasons, choosing to be careless is just not an option here.
Likewise, our well-being is our own responsibility. Despite recent well-being initiatives in education and indeed on a larger scale in the workplace, we have a duty to ourselves that cannot be outsourced, and certainly not to a school or organization. workplace. Well-being at work is precisely that, and is subject to the policy of any organization.
Sacrificing one’s well-being for professional gain seems like an incredibly reckless compromise, and yet wellness is increasingly presented in tones that suggest it’s something someone else can do for us. or for us. Ensuring our personal well-being is entirely up to us and taking proper care of ourselves is essential to our survival throughout a career.
And the results of our students? This is where caring seems to be the right thing and done, and it is, but only to a point. Perspective is everything here. There are no financial bonuses in education. We don’t get huge extra dividends in exchange for high exam scores. Despite this, we may attach disproportionate importance to how our students’ results reflect on us and our teaching. A touch of more Teflon would not hurt most teachers in this area. When it comes to a student’s performance, the key is that our concern is directly proportional to their effort.
And what do others think of us? And do they care about us more or less than we care about what they think? The national pastime of denigrating teachers has by and large hardened us in the face of criticism. Those who defend or even admire teachers do so for informed and sincere reasons, but they often limit themselves to: not all are bad. Regarding attitudes towards teachers, is there a single open-mindedness in the country? People are generally not inclined to be interested in this topic regardless of their point of view, so it is wiser to be cautious when it comes to others’ point of view on teaching.
Parenting encounters are a whole different area, because collaboration around a young person’s future is at stake. As adults, we need to be really careful about being seen as indifferent to each other. any way. Our respective due diligence duties mean that we literally have to care and young people have to show us they care.
Nonetheless, a clear awareness of where to draw the line is vital for teachers, if only as a potential exit strategy. At the risk of stating the obvious, parents are not objective when it comes to their own children. Courting their opinions and basking in the glory of their compliments is reckless. Everything will change quickly if we don’t deliver.
This sentence will have made the most demanding readers of you shudder. Parental pressure to offer more is best directed towards the pupil, his own offspring. And yet, many parents direct their efforts towards teachers and in doing so, have hiccups. We are doing our entire profession a disservice if we get into a parental entanglement of any kind. This can lead too easily to inappropriate approaches, such as asking that Mr. A or Ms. B be chosen for child Y or Z. This compromises what must be taken for granted, namely that all teachers are properly trained and qualified for the courses. they are allocated. If for some reason this is not true, it needs to be resolved in another forum.
There should be no arena where the professional competence of teachers is called into question, and yet such arenas do exist. Ireland is a village, after all. Safe to say, having a healthy dose of Teflon on hand helps in this area, but to suggest that being non-stick is the default position of teachers would be unfair to the many parents who support us in our work.
John’s handwritten card in the staff room last week thanking us for all of our efforts over the years is a testament to the power of benevolence. Mr. Keane refused to give up on John, even when John seemed to have given up himself. Not only does John care now, he’s also ready to show it off.