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Building Mindfulness For Teachers Guide

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Building Mindfulness For Teachers Guide

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Building Mindfulness For Teachers Guide

  1. 1. Mindfulness — a set of skills that helps us be more present, calm, and focused — can be a catalyst for social and emotional development and professional growth for educators. Here, Metta Karuna McGarvey, an expert on mindfulness, presents five simple steps that any educator can take to increase wellbeing, navigate challenges, and cultivate inner strengths. for Teachers Building Mindfulness 1. Build focus “For many of us, constant demands are deeply fatiguing and frustrating, making it hard to stay organized and get things done,” McGarvey says. To develop our ability to focus, McGarvey recommends taking one or two minutes several times a day to step away from our devices and get fully present. “Stretch, step outside, look out the window, concentrate on your breath — do just one thing, but do it with 100 percent of your attention.” 2. Slow down “This goes with building focus,” McGarvey says. “Take 10 or 15 minutes each day to just be. Meditate, do yoga, walk, make a cup of tea, take a hot bath, play with your kids or pet, or just sit and notice the beauty around you.” 3. Take care of your body “We all know it’s important, but many of us let this slide when busy. Adequate sleep is essential, as is limiting unhealthy food, caffeine, and alcohol, and eating fresh, well-prepared foods,” she says. These take discipline and time, but the benefits in energy and clarity are significant. Keep at it, urges McGarvey. “It takes a few months for your body to recover from poor habits and not enough sleep,” she says. “And for many, exercise only becomes pleasurable after doing it regularly for three to four months.” 4. Maintain perspective and lighten up Keep difficulties in perspective when things get grim by remembering to look for the good, strive for a light touch, or find an alternate perspective. Looking for the humorous side that accompanies many challenges can be helpful. “But there is an important balance here,” McGarvey says. “Poking fun at our own shortcomings can be a great stress buster, but remember not to poke fun or make jokes at the expense of others.” 5. Express gratitude “Each night before you fall asleep, contemplate three good things about your day or your life,” McGarvey says. Savor each one for a minute or two and let yourself feel deep appreciation. Source: http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news/uk/15/11/building-inner-strengths

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