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Advice please - how to move on?

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by LaurenB4000, Nov 15, 2018.

  1. LaurenB4000

    LaurenB4000 New commenter

    I have put this on another thread but I am thinking it might be more suited in the supply forum as I am looking to get back into supply teaching to build up my confidence. Do you tend to take supply work locally or further away from where you live?

    I experienced work related stress during a full time supply position. I managed toleave on good terms February half term. Since then I have not had the confidence to return back to work. All of my family and close friends saw me at my worst, when I was extremely anxious and low. It has completely knocked my confidence and it has left me feeling really embarrassed.

    Overall, I feel like I am stuck in a rut. Everytime I think about applying for something or returning to supply I keep thinking what if they hear about my breakdown? I am not the person I used to be at all. I genuinely feel lost and numb and worry I won't manage teaching like I used to. I just feel so ashamed for not being myself and keep thinking what if friends mention to my ex-collegues (it's a small community)about my anxiety - what do I say?

    I know returning back to work will break this cycle and hopefully boost my confidence however I worry what people think of me for having been though anxiety and depression. Have you been through this? If so, how did you handle collegues knowing about it and supressing your thoughts of people talking about you?

    I have had times when I think about leaving teaching (as I am wondering if that's my problem) but I have no idea what else to do!? Also, how would my ex-colleagues react when they hear I am applying for jobs outside of teaching as I gave no indication at the time I might consider other jobs. Sorry for rambling on...I'm just confused and can't seem to get out of overthinking everything and constantly feeling ashamed. Thankyou.
  2. LaEscocesa

    LaEscocesa New commenter

    Hi Lauren
    I really feel for you, having anxiety and depression affects everything in your life and does knock your confidence.
    I don't have any brilliant answer, I'm afraid, but just wanted to let you know that you're not alone and that you have nothing to feel ashamed of. The illness makes you feel that, but it's not true.
    I hope you have support and understanding from your nearest and dearest.
    Talking therapy helped me but my confidence is still very low - it's a daily battle but being kind to yourself and not putting pressure on yourself is helpful.
    I'm trying Mindfulness and positive mantras, getting outside for fresh air, etc :)
    I think that going back to supply, day to day, to test how you feel might be worth a go - and I would very much like to think nobody would discuss you or be negative in their attitude, I hope I'm not being naive.
    Wishing you a return to health and happiness x
    gingerhobo48 and JohnJCazorla like this.
  3. supply287

    supply287 New commenter

  4. Northern_Miss

    Northern_Miss New commenter

    I've actually found supply teaching to be a huge boost to my confidence levels - you might quite enjoy doing it for a while. It's less work than a full time position and would allow you to see a variety of local schools - the good and the bad!
  5. supply287

    supply287 New commenter

    Sorry, pressed wrong button .

    What you are experiencing will/has happen/ed to many of us on here . I imagine quite a few of the supplies have been through negative experiences.
    It happened to me. After a few months/weeks of under the covers, lying low , feeling ****, a greater appreciation of The Scream etc. ; I started day-to-day-supply . It was something that I found I liked and could do; and because there was nothing burning in terms of a different career, carried on for almost 20 years ( and tried other things too) Sometimes doing up to a year in a non-class teacher role, I liked it. I was offered class teaching posts but realised I didn't/don't like certain aspects of it. These aspects that give people stress are different for different people.

    Try not to imagine back in the classroom , in your head but maybe dip your toe in, if you wish. I met many qualified teachers who were doing something similar, or totally different ,and making it work for them. Try an hour, a morning etc., in different schools, if you can/wish.
    Moving on isn't moving back to the same , unless you want to.

    Bit waffly, but what are we!:)
    agathamorse likes this.
  6. k1tsun3

    k1tsun3 New commenter

    I left mainstream a few years back and found a teaching post I enjoyed at a small alternative provision, max 20 students. Then I and a baby and moved too far away to commute, so I resigned. I took a few extra months off after maternity ended and then took a long-term supply post in a mainstream school. I just left. It was mutual as I refused to give up my evenings and weekends with my son or work into the wee hours of the morning.

    I had been thinking about leaving before the job at this alternative provision, but I looked it there and stayed. But this last job had definitely confirmed the previous was a stop gap. I've spent quite a bit of time considering my options and have turned to day-to-day supply whilst I retrain. My evenings and weekends are mine. I spend a few hours a day now learning to code. I'm going to get my first job as a developer in a few months. I'm doing it for me and my family. It's a career with flexibility, growths and opportunity that can take me anywhere.

    Sorry, a bit long. My point is that it's probably best to get stuck back in to really see. Maybe just do day-to-day and take it from there. In the end, of you decide to change careers, it's for you. No one else matters. You need to do something that makes you happy

    Best of luck.
    agathamorse and pepper5 like this.
  7. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi sorry to hear you have been unwell with WRS and as you can tell by reading these forums it affects a lot of people in various ways.

    Firstly, don't compare yourself to others or care about what any of your colleagues think. You should do what is best for you not anyone else since you are the one your decisions affect. What people think or say about you doesn't really matter.

    As far as supply teaching goes, you have already experienced it so you know the pitfalls as well as the benefits. If you stick to the good schools and avoid the RI ones then you might just enjoy it again. Also, if your finances allow you could do day to day supply instead of a long term assignment. On day to day, you show up at 8:00 and leave at 3:00 or whatever - there is no planning or marking. That, however, can be stressful waiting for the phone to ring in the mornings and not ever knowing exactly where you may go. It doesn't bother me so much but many people hate waiting around for a morning call. You could do pre-booked only day to day though but that will of course limit how much work you get. Travelling will be stressful, so I would suggest you try to stay within your local area. A lot of course will depend on your finances and how much money you want/need.

    When and if you choose to retrain try to pick something that fits your personality and skill set and not only the money.

    Don't forget there are other ways to earn money to with things like net work marketing, a small business, or tutoring.
    agathamorse likes this.
  8. Lucilla90

    Lucilla90 Occasional commenter

    I would definitely back up what people are saying about day-to-day supply. It gave me back my confidence after a tough time.

    Yes, I was nervous that first day. But the more I did it and the more I realised I was doing well and that people appreciated me, the better I felt. I was appreciated, people are usually so relieved for the supply to turn up, despite some of the bad experiences people cite on others threads. I didn’t have much negative experience on supply.

    And if there was an off day, or a tough school, I knew I didn’t have to go back if I didn’t want to. I always went back, but just knowing I didn’t have to really helped.

    Oh and never mind what your ex colleagues think, your life is your own and if you don’t want to teach and want a new way forward that is your business.

    Good luck to you.
    Mermaid7, agathamorse and pepper5 like this.
  9. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    Give it a try
    pepper5 likes this.

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