Sunday, 1 January 2017

This is What Burnout Looks Like

It stalks the staffrooms of today, and is the universal warning of more experienced to less experienced ones. The dreaded "burnout". What does it look like? Total exhaustion.

Last term I pushed it hard. I work on a small software project for school on the side of teaching, leading a teaching group, school clubs and all the other periphery which goes with modern day teaching. I pushed it too hard, in a bid to make push through some large updates.

As a consequence, by the time the last day arrived I was tired to the point of total exhaustion. With the relief of finishing term, on the last day I cycled home after going to the pub (for orange juice and lemonade) with collegues, and lost it. Not in the crying, chair throwing, uncontrolled emotional "lost it" I occasionally see from my pupils, but in the ability to cycle. I crashed out.

This is what burnout looks like-

As a result of the damage, and a loss of confidence in the bike (it is a weird match of components), I have ended up with a new bike and more safety gear. But more importantly I have learnt the value of stopping, and not working too hard. Hopefully I can learn it well this time.

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