How to Avoid Burnout

We’ve all heard of it, but how do we avoid it?

Let me tell you, the biggest thing I’ve learned as an SLP is how to avoid burnout. If I’m being honest with you, I learned the hard way. When the pandemic started, learning teletherapy felt like I was going back to school for a subject I never chose. As time went on and we returned to work, everything seemed different. The students had higher social and emotional needs, decreased social pragmatic language skills, and needed our help more than ever. Honestly, it was like I was drowning, but when I finally surfaced, I felt a lot better.

Five Tips to Avoid Burnout

  1. Simplify the Process: Start this from day one. Have your master list that includes student names, service delivery, IEP/504, and parent emails. Trust me when I say, keeping this updated will make your life so much easier as you go.
  2. Set Boundaries: Don’t answer emails after work hours. And, if it really really bothers you and it’s all you can think about – schedule send. Your after-work hours are yours. I don’t even check my email after 3:30…there is no such thing as a speech emergency 🙂
  3. Weekends Are Yours: I mean don’t we all say “Because tomorrow is Saturday we can stay up late tonight” all the time? Think about how many times this year you’ve said this. We don’t say “Because tomorrow is Saturday, we should work late and bring work home.” Find that balance – trust me – you won’t regret it.
  4. Stay Organized: The best thing you can do is organize your materials and your space. I keep all of my materials in folders and also have them on my google drive for easy access. This won’t just save you time but will also save you so much avoidable stress. If you want more tips/tricks on staying organized check out our PD and earn CMH’s!
  5. Mental Health Matters: Need a day? Take a day. But don’t take days off and then go home and write reports. Do yoga. Make a smoothie. Put on a face mask. Honestly, order a large pizza and watch Netflix all night if that’s what you need, but focus on yourself.

I really hope you go home at the end of the day and love your job. Trust me, I’ve had plenty of days where I didn’t. But, keeping these tips in mind will keep your head above water. You got this!!

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