Am Burned Out Before The Year Even Starts (whine Session)

I am getting ready to go back to work and just have no desire to do so. I have spent my summer spending time with my husband, going on vacation, sleeping in and writing. Now next week I have to go back and sit through the same meetings (again) and see the kids in two weeks. I have tried to separate myself from anything work related to give myself a break and just am not ready to go back to work. I can't seem to get motivated. I know I need to go back. The only thing I am looking forward to when I go back to work is seeing my students again. I am not ready to deal with parents or any of that crap. I am not ready for 12-14 hour days. I think I would like teaching if I could have a life outside of it but I know that is just not an option because of the huge demands of my job. I work at two schools and see 1200 kids a week. I have grading to do, activities, professional development, before and after school programs and just don't want any of it.

I honestly just want out of teaching right now but have no idea what else I can do. It's really the only thing I'm suited for. What else do you do with a music education degree? I am thankful that I have a way to support my family right now but just can't bring myself to be thankful enough to want to go to work. Is anyone else here??
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13 Responses Aug 7, 2010

I've been in the same situation that you are in. Dreading the first day back to work after a relaxing summer. It's taken me years to overcome the terrible burnout I found myself in. Believe me, start looking for alternatives. I know it's hard because, as a teacher, you feel you're not good at anything else. I agree with what some of the comments advice you to do. If you enjoy writing, then write! who knows what can come out of that! In the meantime,, remember that your responsibilities end when you get out of school and that, while you are at work, you are doing just that, your work and do it to the best of your possibilities. <br />
Hang in there, it gets better!

Okay, Ella, it's Friday! <br />
Long week, for sure. Take a little time this weekend to do some writing, or something else purely pleasureful! You've earned it.<br />
Play on!

Ooooeerr Lilt! :D Nope haven't been down that road! You see, teaching is the most valuable of all gifts, I have learned the value of a comma after all! "I have been a teacher and man." should read "I have been a teacher, and, man, ..." Problem is English was not my subject - so, hopefully, I got it right this time? :) x X@

Good comment, Cabbie. Though, I had to read it twice. "I have been a teacher and man." Huh, you've been a man???<br />
<br />
There are a lot of parents behaving badly these days. You nailed it, they are all about the kid's "feelings." Or they are so self-absorbed, they can't be bothered by the offspring they created. <br />
At a restaurant recently, I saw a woman eating lunch with her 4yr.old. She talked on her phone the entire time. It made me so sad.

Lilt knows what she's talking about. Gropulp!!!! Well, some comments/people just deserve silence! I've been a part-time teacher and man, it is the hardest job in the world. I could never have coped with full-time teaching. <br />
Everyone thinks their little darlings are perfect - bright, well-behaved, disciplined and attentive - yeah right! Parents hope the teachers achieve this miracle with the raw material they send to school. Children who have no idea that discipline exists because mom and dad believe in letting the kids experience all life has to offer with no restraints to stifle their creativity and freedom. <br />
I wish you well. Try to keep writing sometime, somewhere. I hope you find your answer soon. And well done for keeping it up all this time! X@

It's all good, Ella.<br />
We got your back.<br />
There are lots of teachers here.

Ella, you are a real-life superhero.<br />
That is for sure.<br />
<br />
It's like they say on the plane...put YOUR oxygen mask on first.

Well, this is the place to do all of those things. And we should expect that in any community of diversity there are some who can't say/write the appropriate things. They have their own problems too if they express themselves this way here, I would guess. <br />
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I have read the comments and you have more or less countered them. However inside of each is the grain of truth that you probably already know. You are in a long distance event of at least several more years to look solid on your CV. YOu have to find a way to concentrate your time of freedom within this schedule. It isn't so much physical as psychological, right? In my opinion Part of the key to enduring and even flourishing is you have to make a disciplined effort to make enjoyment and deepen your soul's capacity. I use the word disciplined because this has to be just one more thing to add to your schedule. And not only that you have to believe in it. It could be writing, it could be playing for your self, or it could be sex with your husband. But you have to make it a regular part of your life, not just when you feel miserable..... Just my 2 centsl

Groplup, you are probably a perfect example of the parent Ella is tired of dealing with.<br />
<br />
I agree with Honeybit, you love your students, that makes you a wonderful teacher. <br />
Your day is exhausting. No wonder you are burned out. <br />
Have you considered reducing your school schedule and offering private lessons?

Oh god not another bloody teacher blithering about what a hard job they have. I hope to goodness my child doesn't have a teacher like you. Teachers like you have destroyed his experience as a child in learning because you are a bunch of selfish over payed layabouts who have no care to do what you are doing. I hope that you do not teach anymore and go to suffer writing a boring a book which noone will ever read you insufferable feeble twit.

I think that you gave the answer in your story, you spent the summer experiencing life with your family and 'writing'. Do you lose track of time when you write? What did you write? I'd explore that for my next career. Send in some freelance work to magazines and see what happens. In the meantime it's great that the one thing you care about as a teacher is the children. I'll bet that they provide you with enough material every day to write children's books from now till the day you die. The world is at your command.

Start applying to the middle schools. You'll see the same kids every day since music is an elective, your student load will drop to a couple hundred and you won't have to grade so many papers. Also, try having the kids exchange papers to grade. Who really cares if they don't grade them perfectly?

What would happen if you did things your way? By that I mean, you concentrate on what you love about teaching--the kids--and let the other stuff slide. I admit that may not be a solution, but it doesn't hurt to ask "How do I want it?" You have to have balance, no matter what job or profession you have. What would make me happy? I might be happy teaching and concentrating on the kids from 7:00 Am to 5 Pm, but after 5 Pm--it's my life and the kids and school take a back seat. It's easy to give in to the demands, but I'm telling you as someone with an ulcer from demands, you should try to have it your way. Also, you are more than a teacher. People change careers all the time, I've done it too. The trick is to have something lined up you are interested in. Do you play music? Get in a band and dream big! It could be anything, whatever interests you or takes hold of you.