Burnout can be a struggle for caregivers throughout the year however, during the holiday season, it becomes a bigger challenge for many. We all know to take great care of the kids we love, we have to take good care of ourselves and that starts with keeping burnout at bay. Here are a few ways to stay in that space.
1. Stay connected to what you love about childcare
Can you remember why you started working with kids to begin with? Do you still get a buzz when you learn something new, have a small success during the day, or see your work pay off in the life of a child? Are you slowing down enough to take in all the love and goodness that kids exude? When you stay in touch with what you love about your work, it’s much easier to let the small stuff go.
2. Don’t abandon your personal life
When you’re an in-home provider, it’s so easy for the professional and personal to mesh. Pretty soon it feels like even in your off hours, you’re still on the job. The remedy is to commit to yourself that you’ll invest a set amount of time in things outside of work that make you happy. Set up a weekly dinner with your best friend, take a pottery class, hike a new trail each weekend. By making your personal life a priority, you can return to work recharged and ready to go.
3. Celebrate the small things
Burnout is a slow burn, it’s one thing after another without the mental or emotional resets we all need. Soon all of those things have piled so high they seem overwhelming. You can help keep that feeling at bay by slowing down during your day and noticing the small successes and happy moments that are all around you. Watch the kids crack up laughing over nothing at all, get an extra few seconds of that squeezy hug, bask in the stories of friends and foes from the tween that rarely opens up. The small things help us stay grounded and able to battle the burnout.
Burnout isn’t inevitable. Small changes in the way we approach our professional life can keep us grounded, balanced and happy.