What is the BIGGEST learning about work for you in this extraordinary year?
As a teacher, social worker or health worker, who I call Nurturing Professionals, you have been an essential worker with an ever-increasing workload placed on your shoulders. A heavy load indeed. This year of crisis has shaken the norm for your workplace. New considerations had to be planned for and implemented to prevent Covid 19 spreading through community infection.
Part of your job is to deal with the families of your clients, your students, your patients. You assist them to sort out family issues. I imagine some of you went through tough times. Think of a critical care nurse who could only hold an ipad up for a patient to say a final goodbye to their family because visitors were not allowed into our hospitals. What is the cumulative impact of those tough experiences on you?
As you adjusted to the new workplace norm you have also been taking care of your own family matters, maybe managing home learning, navigating changing family dynamics, living a more restricted life and facing many uncertainties.
It is well established members of the nurturing professions, teachers, social workers and healthcare workers are experiencing increasing rates of stress. Chatting to a senior teacher recently I asked her, “How has teaching changed over the last decade?” She cited accountability to her employer, students and parents had increased exponentially in the last decade. As a professional this resulted in her feeling less trusted.
The Australian Council for Educational Research, ACER Discover report published 18th August 2020 stated, “Australian teachers report comparatively high levels of stress in their jobs. Data collected in a survey showed 58% of teachers were feeling ‘quite a bit’ or ‘a lot’ of stress. This is higher than the OECD average of 49%. Over work has become normalized in Education.
After decades of working in a nurturing profession where other people’s needs are the priority what happens to your needs? Who is taking care of you? How difficult or easy is it for you to have some ‘me’ time?
Feeling a little overwhelmed at the prospect of going through another year of full-time work, coping with another extraordinary workload? You don’t want to let go of the income, the sense of identity attached to your professional role but you do want to lighten the load you carry. You don’t want to fully retire but you are not sure of a new pathway ahead. It is possible.
It is my job to support you as you turn your next stage of life dreams into reality. Imagine having the freedom to design your own future!