Work stress due to illness and time off

I haven't posted again since last month when I started to think about the possibility of stress and depression being a problem for me. Was fine over Xmas probably because of the routines being broken and not being at work, but day before school started (I'm a teacher) I started having sleepless nights again and woke up on last day of the holiday ill. Have been physically under the weather since, feeling coldy, and have ended up taking the last 2 days off work which I rarely do. Time off work stresses me out further, knowing that I'm putting other staff members in a more difficult position and that I'm going to have to catch up on the work I've missed. Then today I received an email from my headteacher with a performance review which comes across as negative due to very small area for strengths and lots if 'areas for development'. Now I know that my headteacher is very supportive and that it would not be intended in this way but as I've received it during time off I've taken it as extra pressure to be at work tomorrow to get on with all these things I'm not good enough at.

Really just needed to get all this off my chest so I might be able to get some sleep tonight and go to work in the morning :(

Apologies for any typing errors, I'm typing on a phone and am tired!

4 Replies

  • You need to do something for you, sounds like you are not looking after yourself. Do you have soneone to talk to ? I find this helps, you work in a very stressful occupation you have to have an outlet .

  • Thanks for your reply tina. I live with my boyfriend who I do speak to about how I'm feeling to a point. The problem is that although he is sympathetic to my stress he is not a teacher and doesn't understand the specific issues I have because (I think) of the job. He's good at telling me that I should be taking time off when I'm ill and telling me I shouldn't stress about things, but as I'm sure you are aware that's far from helpful and just makes me feel more stressed out.

  • Hi

    I hope you managed to get some sleep & posting how you feel helped a little

    We do have members that have been where you are & are teachers & had to take time of work to get themselves in a better place to cope with their anxiety & so far I have read positive outcomes from them for doing so

    Have you been & seen your GP ?

    I know sometimes we can be fearful over what they might think but this is now something they hear so many times that a good GP will be supportive & give you help

    I imagine you don't want to speak to the Head about how you are feeling , maybe the fear she /he will feel you are incompetent of doing your job or wont understand gets in the way , yet I would imagine if they know how you are suffering at the moment they would support you & look at your performance differently as they will know there is a reason behind this which even though people don't always understand how this feels knowing helps them to be more supportive towards us

    I know it may feel daunting to speak up but the relief & support you can get after can be well worth it & it is a lot better than suffering in silence with what must feel the weight of the world on your shoulders at the moment

    Think about it & keep talking for support on here :-)

    Hope you have a good day :-)




  • You really are not alone feeling like this in the teaching profession. I am a teacher and have just resigned my post and i can't begin to tell you how much more positive I feel. I am on a couple of agencies books for day to day supply.

    I am honestly not recommending this as an option to you but just to say teaching is a very stressful job so please go and talk to your GP and your head and don't feel guilty about being off. impossible eh! They can't help if they don't know. I assume you work in a state school in which case you are entitled to Counselling if that is appropriate through occupation health.

    Please talk to your head/line manager and together look at your strengths and celebrate, then look at areas of weaknesses and set yourself a timetable short medium and long term how your going to address. Being realistic I would suggest taking no more than 2 at a time. Ask for appropriate support. For example you might need training, or watch someone else teaching, or further NTA support etc

    . As a profession teaching is imploding with stress, anxiety and depression so if you are still working you are doing well but in order to stay working you need to set yourself some clear rules. and stick to them. For instance only work until x at night and not at weekends.

    Also and I know this is almost impossible as a teacher but make some time preferably everyday for you, both with and without your boyfriend. This could be having a relaxing bath, watching fav programme on telly, what ever floats your boat.

    I don't mean to sound bossy but I have known so many good, valuable teachers that have suffered from anxiety and depression some of whom have stayed in teaching some of whom haven't and it shouldn't be that way.

    The other person i would talk to is your boy friend and i would just suggest you tell him about a 'typical' day and how it makes you feel.

    i hope this helps.



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