Journal! Journal to deal with challenges. Journal for your mental health.
Something that I have noticed, many people need to decompress after a long day. They seek to do this by “talking it out”, but the listener may not have the interest or the background to be an active, helpful listener. In these situations, the individual may be wound up more than before attempting to discuss the day.
My husband is a teacher, so I am able to easily relate to general teaching issues. My husband teaches Social Studies in an English immersion school. There are times that I cannot relate to his concerns or frustrations at all. My experience is early childhood, elementary, and middle school. I have only taught two students whose first language was not English, but I wouldn’t have known that if I didn’t have to fill out that information on standardized testing.
My mother is the nursing director for a behavioral health department. She frequently suggests that individuals journal. She says it is one of the most effective coping skills. It helps find trends. You can discover things about yourself through writing.
My husband was getting antsy for Christmas break. He was beginning to feel dread when getting ready for school. He felt like his kids weren’t learning anything. To me, the fact that they could converse in English was enough. They can learn social studies later. I was not helping make my husband feel better.
My husband started a journal in the style of Nicholas II, the last Tsar of Russia. Basically he writes an entry everyday. Some days have one sentence, other days have paragraphs. All written short and to the point. It is a chronology of his life as a teacher. Entries look like this:
December 19: Today was good day for traffic.
December 20: The children are ready for Christmas. Christmas on a Sunday throw off school schedules. I feel bad for these kids. The stress of finals, immediately followed by the stress of holidays.
December 21: It is unseasonably warm.
My own journal is not like this at all. I tend to journal once every two or three days. My entries are long and detailed. They are full of emotion, prayers, plans, lists, drawings. I write in different colors and using different script depending on the day.
I would encourage anyone to journal. Writing it down really does help.