October 27, 2017 | Elizabeth Cook If you have ever worked with children before, you know how hard it can be on you both mentally and physically. It requires a lot of patience and means that you have to be on constant alert. Being a parent is definitely a difficult task, but when they are your own children you can discipline them in whatever way you see fit. However, as a grade school teacher you do not have the option to do much when they act out. There are certain standard disciplinary procedures that each school or teacher may have but sometimes, if the problem is not corrected at home, it can be hard to enforce rules during the day. The other part of the equation is that you often become very attached or at least invested in these children so it can be hard to not feel like a parent in some ways. In most cases, children spend more time with their teachers at school than they do with their parents, five days out of the week. When you work with children it is super important to create boundaries and give yourself a way to unwind and let go after a long day. Without these very important releases, you may not be able to perform at your peak as a teacher. Take a Vacation The number one way to relieve stress is to just get away. If your paid time off allows for it, you should be able to get away for at least a few days, a couple of times a year. It does not have to be to some exotic or tropical location every time. Feel free to head to the next town over and camp by the lake for a few days. Whatever you do, make sure you plan ahead so you could enjoy your time without any worries or guilt. Treat Yourself to Some Shopping For some people, mindless shopping or shopping with a purpose is actually stress reducing for them. Browsing the racks, trying it on, purchasing a new outfit or accessories is an act that brings them great joy, and it is enough to be a stress reliever for them. If this is you, head to your local mall and browse your favorite stores like Bed Bath and Beyond or Victoria’s Secret. Maybe buying yourself a new pair of pajamas is just what you need to settle in after a long day of working with kids. Find a Good Workout Exercise can be great for stress relief. Not only does it expel unused energy, but it can release powerful endorphins that will serve as an instant pick me up. It does not matter what type of workout you choose to do, but find something that is enjoyable to you so that you will be motivated to keep up with it. This could be an organized sport like soccer or basketball, or something solo like running or yoga. Yoga, pilates, or anything that incorporates focused breathing intro your practice can really increase the benefits or working out and enhance that relaxed feeling you have after.