Teaching: Sunday Evening Anxiety

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Ms.Holyoke, Mar 25, 2018.

  1. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Connoisseur

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    For the past few weeks, I have been feeling extremely anxious on Sunday afternoons and evenings. I am all planned for Monday, but I always feel terrible on Sundays. Is this normal? I usually feel ok (but exhausted) the rest of the week but Sundays have been the worst.
     
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  3. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    Yes. It apparently never ends, Year 1 to Year 30.
     
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  4. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    It's not so bad after a while. I felt that at first, but now I am more or less excited to start the week.
     
  5. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    My teacher friends and I refer to that as "Sunday night sense of impending doom." For me, it's varied depending on the school/jobs I've had. My first school was the easiest, but I was also living in a really isolated place that I absolutely hated. I was often lonely on the weekends (especially hard to go from the crazy busy social life of college to that), so sometimes I even looked forward to going back to work at the end of the weekend. My students and just my job in general were very "easy" at that school.

    For my second job, I moved to a city and had a much more active social life, but was in an awful school that made me absolutely miserable. My P and AP were lunatics. I would have physical symptoms like headaches, nausea, dizziness, etc. on Sunday nights.

    I'm currently in a much better place, but my current school is a challenging one to work at. My admin is great and I like my teammates and students, but I work with a pretty challenging population. Even with good support systems it's simply a hard school to work at. I never quite know what the next day/week will hold. Although it's nothing like the full on panic that I felt on Sunday evenings at my previous school, I do get a little anxious thinking about starting another week.

    Not tonight though, because I'm on Spring Break!
     
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  6. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Most years it's not a big deal. I'm not a morning person at all, so I hate getting up early.

    I've had a couple of years that I dreaded going to work, but it's not been restricted to Sunday evenings. I disliked it in general. Fortunately, those years aren't common.
     
  7. svassillion

    svassillion Companion

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    Yes! Sometimes I just feel slightly bummed and other times it feels like dread. I'm fine when I get back into the groove on Monday, but for me Friday nights are the best time of the week and Sunday nights are the worst. Societies have evolved to such a stressful work schedule that I imagine it's just our way of reacting to the limits on our sense of personal freedom. At least this week is only 4 days and I'm really excited about the work we're doing this week so I'm not feeling it so much today.
     
  8. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Comrade

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    I think it is pretty common in the profession. Anxiety is really the worry we have before hand. So being anxious about going back on Sunday is a normal manifestation of anxiety and often with anxiety if we confront it (go back to work) we realize it isn't that bad. Some people have anxiety about work, others don't. If you do, I would encourage you to figure out what works for you to manage it. For some it is something like mindfulness or yoga, for others exercise, for others seeking the help of a social worker/psychologist. I wouldn't get stressed about being stressed but I would look for ways to manage it.
     
  9. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    I am thankful teaching is my second career. I have met many teachers my age that only know this professional career since college. It has worn some down. They are the one's saying on Wednesday, "Is it Friday yet?" On Friday they have that "look" and ask, "Is it 3:30 yet?"

    It could be worse..

    I worked at a bank prior to this. Terrible environment. PLUS, I worked in I.T. Everything was our fault. I was on call on weekends - no extra pay. Had to do any major upgrades after working hours and it was not uncommon to schedule these on holidays. I have worked Thanksgiving, Easter, and everything in between except Xmas. My professional opinion was requested (standard operating procedure) but not valued. I was always getting "tattled on" by adults who whined about slow laptops, printing, etc.. This resulted in an atmosphere where being fired was always on my mind. I kept a drawer with my stuff in case it was firing day. If you have ever watched the classic Beverly Hillbillies and seen how Mr. Drysdale acts and treats Ms. Hathaway - THAT is banking. The people in charge were batsh_t crazy! That industry makes no common sense to me. Bankers will do ANYTHING to keep a customer happy (and keep their money in the bank). Bending rules, making irrational decisions, panic, and blame were daily menu items.

    Believe me, teaching is a wayyyy better gig. If you really want to make yourself sick on Sunday night, banks are always hiring.
     
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  10. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    The Sunday Night Blues. I get ‘em myself from time to time. It’s normal, in my opinion.
     
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  11. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    It's a constant, at least for me. My solution is to have a fun dinner out with friends every Sunday evening so I have that to look forward to.
     
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  12. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I’m sorry you are feeling anxious. Maybe you should go to the spa to calm your nerves. Also, try breathing exercises and listening to some calming and melodious music!

    I remember feeling this way in my first year, but it has been smooth sailing every year thereafter. Are you a newer teacher or did you just start working at a new school?
     
  13. JimG

    JimG Comrade

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    This feeling never goes away for me, but it also was not isolated to teaching. When I worked eight-hour days on weekends while in high school, I had the same anxiety the night before.

    For me, getting together with family and friends on Sundays really takes my mind off work and helps me relax. I married into such a large family that we never go very long between big gatherings for one birthday or another, and when we do, we’ll pick a Sunday to get together just because. If you have a good group of family or friends, make a tradition of having a dinner and game night on Sunday evenings.
     
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  14. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    Oh God....you'e like the opposite of me For me it's those big family gatherings that give me the anxiety.
     
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  15. JimG

    JimG Comrade

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    To each their own. The point is to find something that is engaging and enjoyable to take your mind off the anxiety.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2018
  16. Been There

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    It's most unfortunate that many people here don't seem to look forward to returning to work on Monday. What would you say accounts for the "smooth sailing" you enjoy and the absence of Sunday evening anxiety that has apparently become the new normal for so many teachers?
     
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  17. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Because 1) I digitized everything in my first year so there is very little prep each year, 2) I have extensive knowledge of the subject matter I teach and I teach it very well, 3) I have excellent pedagogy so I always get great marks with classroom management, and 4) I have really supportive admin. This is why I just don’t see what I can possibly be stressed out about.
     
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  18. tchr4vr

    tchr4vr Companion

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    The only reason I feel anxiety is because on Sundays, my P looks at my lesson plans--which are incredibly complicated and long, and completely pointless, and she always has something nitpicky to say, even if your lesson plan is to take the city mandated quarterly benchmark (which it is this week), she'll probably complain about there not being enough activities, or no writing, or something that goes absolutely contrary to what we have to do for the city-mandated benchmark.
     
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  19. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I would politley note that the students are taking an assessment and therefore have no need for additional activities. They will utilize the entire class time for taking said test.

    Sometimes, publicschool admin are incredibly stupid.
     
  20. tchr4vr

    tchr4vr Companion

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    Oh, I do. And I still get the comments. In fact, I just got two about 2 minutes ago - "Beside the CSA, what else will your students be doing during the block." and "Is there any writing activities going on this day? You know, every day has to have reading and writing!"
     
  21. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    #WarOnPublicSchools

    What's public got to do, got to do with it???

    I've heard just as many, if not MORE, private school nightmares. Just a few posts away from this one is someone being terminated at a private school based on heresay. How's that smart?
     
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  22. Always__Learning

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    I'll just add that while you will get a range of responses, I think it is important to recognize that it isn't an uncommon response BUT the most important piece for your long term well-being is to figure out what works for you - what calms you. I'd highly recommend Dr. Shanker's work for understanding stress and self-regulation.
     
  23. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Really?
     
  24. FourSquare

    FourSquare Fanatic

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    So my teacher friends say. :whistle: But I do think it gets easier. Even in the best context/situation, there's just so much riding on what we do. This is definitely a challenging profession for someone who's constantly in a reflective death spiral, like me. :dizzy: I run overly anxious on a good day. (Probably more of a "me" problem!)
     
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  25. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Nice try. I have heard way more nonsense with public schools than with private. I read them daily on these forums.

    #RealityCheck
     
  26. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    #DoYouTeachMath?

    #SampleSize
     
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  27. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    #EverHeardOfGoogleOrNationalTelevision?

    #Dementia
     
  28. TrademarkTer

    TrademarkTer Groupie

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    People with a math background would notice that there are many, many, many more public schools than private schools out there. As such, you are statistically going to hear 1 private school horror story for every 10 (or so) public school horror stories you hear just based on the sheer volume of each type of school that exists. If there were 10 times more private schools, the numbers would balance out. I think I hear more than 1 for every 10, tilting the scales in the favor of public schools, but pretty close overall.

    My bottom line is: You're a goon trying to chastise public schools every chance you get when the issue has nothing to do with public vs private.
     
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  29. Guitart

    Guitart Companion

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    HOLY CRAP! Your P sounds like my old boss at the bank. He was the king of micro-managing and the crown prince of the "dog and pony show". He wasted so much time and resources trying to look and sound important. He will forever be my example of how not to be a leader. He is a perfect storm of Steve Carell's character in The Office and Tom Hank's boss in Philadelphia.

    Tomorrow I need to thank my P's.
     
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  30. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    @TrademarkTer, I know what a sample size is and the problems that arise when analyzing/working with small sample sizes due to there being so much variability from sample to sample. BUT, what we are talking about certainly is not a small sample size as you, yourself, just attested to. Really now?

    With each new article, television broadcast, or forum topic, these stories just get more and more ridiculous as time goes on. I’m sorry, but ridiculous things are, by definition, deserving of ridicule.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2018
  31. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I don’t understand why administrators do this. Why wouldn’t you want to make your staff members like you and to be efficient in all things? It just doesn’t make any sense to me. Administrators, past or present, please feel free to chime in.
     
  32. Been There

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    I left school administration after I discovered that it wasn't about making sense or being efficient. Instead of being supportive of teachers to ensure that students excelled academically, I was expected to just maintain the status quo - giving lip service and going through the motions to give the illusion that the school was at the top of its game. After seeing too many teachers in tears and insisting that we talk behind closed doors, I realized that fear and intimidation are frequently used by principals to control their staffs. Sadly, those in the inner circle are often not even aware of the underhanded behavior of their school leader. This was my experience at schools throughout the SES spectrum.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2018
  33. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    My first good smile of the day. Consider yourself a lucky one I guess. I cannot remember the last time I was Monday phobic. But I am not burdened by all the crazy classroom teachers have to worry about in terms of data, testing and being trapped by four walls. My classroom is the great outdoors. And I am down to less than nine more weeks of my career.
     
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  34. Been There

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    Futuremathsprof: Thanks for your response - it's nice to know there's at least one person who has a similar outlook! As an intervention specialist, my program shared most of the same aspects as yours, except for #4. Like you, I also digitized my lessons and reinforcement activities which was a tremendous time saver in the long-run. My use of multimedia lessons coupled with a lifelong interest in pedagogy were instrumental in eliminating behavioral issues. Even though I never had the pleasure of working with a supportive administrator, the final year of my teaching career was by far the most enjoyable and rewarding thanks to my grande finale in which I applied everything I knew to accelerate the learning process. Any stress that I might have had that year was overshadowed by the success of my students who surpassed my wildest expectations! Definitely positive memories to take into retirement.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2018
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  35. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    Your P needs to get a life!
     
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  36. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    I used to get Sunday anxiety so, so bad. At my first school (which was PRIVATE, btw), I had it the worst, because that school was just so challenging in so many ways -- poor, urban, tiny, no support, no supplies, just sheer dedication keeping the doors open -- it literally closed a year after I left (coincidence, not because I left lol!). It got a little better by year three, but I realized it would never get much better than it was, so I left to look for a better placement.

    School #2 was an online charter. My job was too easy, and I was bored. But I wasn't stressed, or anxious. But I did find myself dreaming about getting back into a "real" classroom. So I ended up at School #3....

    Which was a "dreaded public school" (LOL) and yep...it had issues. Big time. Different issues than School #1, but worse in some ways, since we weren't supposed to admit we had issues. I had Sunday anxiety until I got pink-slipped, after which I got a severe case of DGAF instead...which is what led me to apply to School #4....

    Another "awful failing public school" -- except that we, as a Title One school, are in the top 10% in our state, Blue Ribbon School, basically just crushing it in every way. Not to say we don't have our issues...what school doesn't? But we talk about our issues, and try to solve them, and sometimes it works, and sometimes not so much. I still get overwhelmed just thinking about the enormity of the week ahead of me -- how many meetings, IEPs, stacks of essays to grade, etc, etc, -- but I also always have at least one thing to look forward to. That's the trick, I think -- plan in something for yourself -- whether it's a "fun" lesson, or a lesson that gives you a breather (it's OK to sit down for five minutes every now and then), or even something for yourself after school -- you do need to take time for yourself.

    It does get better -- but it takes time and effort. And finding the right school. Which just might be a public school for some people!
     
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  37. YoungTeacherGuy

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    After 5 years in my admin role, I have yet to feel disenchanted with the job. Those who do become jaded, though, end up trying to get others to join the bandwagon (misery loves company) or go back to the classroom (sometimes involuntarily). I hope my positive yet realistic attitude shines through each day.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2018
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  38. TeacherWhoRuns

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    So much YES to this!
    Before this year, I never had this issue. I used to love my job and even got a little sad at the end of the school year. This year due to a demanding principal and one student in particular who takes great glee at completely derailing my lessons, my dread doesn't wait until Sunday night. On Sunday morning I'm dreading going to work the next day.
    There's also the fact that I really can't talk to anyone about the issues because it's a pretty well-known fact that there are some people who will go right to the P and report on other teachers. I will say that as the year has progressed, the tight lips of my coworkers are getting a little looser and I'm realizing that my observations are not unfounded. I'm really seeing the things I think I'm seeing. We're in school until the end of June, so there are many more Sundays to go. I just tell myself that it's better than not having a job to go to on Monday.
     
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  39. Kindergally

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    I'm glad to hear that other people have Sunday Anxiety too!

    My first year was the worst! I worked in a private school and we didn't have a copier. I can remember spending my Sunday evenings at Staples, trying to make all my copies for the week. I would be so worried about forgetting something and never had a good Sunday night sleep. Now, I have a much easier job but still get anxious. I've been here for 10 years so I have no clue about why I'm anxious.
     
  40. Been There

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    So sad that the teaching profession has come down to this. The few who still enjoy going to work should count their lucky stars.
     
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  41. Always__Learning

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    I would like to add that anxiety on Sunday doesn't have to mean you are an overly anxious person or that you aren't great at your job or that you have unsupportive peers/admin, etc. It can also just be because you work with a population with a lot of needs. I was just at a workshop about teacher mental health where the presenter described the needs of a class he was recently supporting and pointed out that it would only be human to experience anxiety/stress when working with such a high needs group - even if you are supported in a great school.

    I also heard a description early in my career where they said that part of the reason teaching is so tiring is because you have to be 'on' all day and presenting in a way that meets the needs of your students (even if inside you are feeling other emotions).

    So I wouldn't worry about feeling anxious on Sunday but I would make sure to get the support you need because you can only support your students if you yourself are supported.
     
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