Dread, Anxiety, Stress, Depression

Just because you can’t physically see it doesn’t mean it’s not there

 

I have always been so busy, it is what I have always been used to! After all, we ran around entertaining children, pretending to be cbeebies characters, or a superhero or Buzz Lightyear to infinity and beyond! We were carers, cuddlers, protectors, feeders, teachers, the person to help wipe their tears away when they wanted mummy or daddy, the person that encouraged them to be confident and take the risks. 

We have laughed, smiled, cried happy tears, cried sad tears, cried lonely tears. 

“What do you do for work?”

Reply: “O I work in a nursery”

Response: “It must be fun to play with children all day”

They had no idea what working in a nursery really meant, the children were least of our stresses and worries, it was the demands of being Buzz Lightyear to infinity and beyond, whilst balancing nappy changing time, lunch time, sleep, routines, the endless activities (as we all know our little ones like to flit between activities at these ages), the PAPERWORK! O my days the planning, recording everything you did from who’s nappy you changed to checking the environments for any risks, the observations, the tracking of children’s development. Are they on track? There are that many aspects to nursery life that the list is exhaustive!

But that didn’t bother me as I absolutely loved my job!

Making a difference to children lives was such a good feeling.

Over the years I worked my way up in positions gaining more experience and responsibilities as I did so, some of these amazing some not so amazing. 

But I didn’t want it to get in my way because the not so amazing experiences just made me more determined to continue making a difference to children’s lives.

I had always been used to being busy, working full time, I started my Foundation Degree and quickly got into a routine of working full time and attending University part time and continued this for about 4 years. I finished my Early Years Professional Status and thought “Yes I made it!” 

It only took me a few months to then think ….. “what next?”

(That little person that sits on my shoulder trying to reason with my thoughts hopped in on my conversation again.)

“What next Amanda! What next! enjoy work, what could you possibly need to do next!” 

FOREST SCHOOL TRAINING! 

What I quickly noticed was a pattern! I couldn’t sit still! I got so used to being so busy that I lost the ability to stop! And even when I did stop my mind definitely didn’t!

I completed Forest School Training and decided the next jump was my role, which I then became a Nursery Manager! I was so so so excited for this, to have my own team.

Help others in the way my managers had helped me, push others to reach their potential the same way my managers had done so with me, mentored, support be there for my team the same way my manager had been there for me!

My manager experience was the challenge I just needed, but wow isn’t being a manager so much more challenging!

A challenge I was ready to take on!

With this my training and Forest School went on the back seat for a while. Until I was given the opportunity to support other nurseries in their nursery development especially in respect of the outdoors. 

Amongst all of this we forget – We all have our lives to deal with bereavements, illnesses, traumas, stresses, house moves, families, we often forget that we work to live not NOT live to work! 

The company I worked for grew and as I looked around I could see me slowly draining away and running around like a headless chicken. My travel was long and so were the days on occasions. I often sat in my car, usually stuck in traffic contemplating life, over thinking, getting frustrated with how robotic I felt, stressing over things I could be doing rather than driving, and found myself feeling down in the dumps, it even got to a point were I would be getting emotional over little thing and telling myself off for doing so!

I would come home and boot the laptop up and finish my work or at least attempt to and never be happy that I didn’t complete everything I needed to do!

I had always been busy working full time, going to university in the evenings, working after hours to get the job done but I now found myself doubting, dreading, and the anxiety began to creep in and often sitting wide awake in bed thinking of all the things I need to do… often thinking I wouldn’t be like this if I did my Forest Frontiers and Blue Sky Learning.

After all the years of busy work life I found myself to have lost my little light and a work life balance…. I was what my Grandma used to always tell me “Amanda your burning the candle at both ends”

This feeling went on for a good few months, not wanting to properly share my feelings scared of what people may think, or thinking people will judge me, people will think you can’t do my job!

I would be snappy, emotional, drained, I would feel lost, I would feel stuck, I did not know how to get the help I needed.

I needed a break, and I needed one quick as I was burnt out! 

With all this said I want you to understand the importance of looking after yourself! I have found this all to well that we don’t look after ourselves! Our days are filled with busy jobs, busy lifestyles, worries, anxieties and emotion! We all want to try and do the best for each other but in return of doing that we don’t look at ourselves!

But it is so important to do so!

I recently found myself wondering what was I doing!

I am usually the bubbly, silly, light hearted person who wants people to feel comfortable around me but instead I started to have the dread, the worry, the anxiety, and feeling of being lost…I worked daily, evening and weekends and always wanted to put 150% into whatever I do but I found that in the midst of being busy I wasn’t truly happy and I felt lost…It got me down, I couldn’t sleep properly, I was getting emotional over little things, I felt tired all the time, I put on the brave face on and just continued to always try and help others and try and do the 150% effort but actually I was burning myself out!

I have really had to learn to put myself first to change this cycle of what is known as ‘Stress’

I needed time!

I needed the time to build myself back up, I needed time to relax my busy brain, I needed time to put my body and mind first, I needed TIME TO THINK ABOUT ME

I left my job and went in search  for what makes me happy and passionate in what I do!

I am not saying to everyone needs to leave jobs or anything as drastic but that what I needed to do for me…

What I am saying is don’t leave it to the point where you are burnt out and stressed .

Put yourself first and think about you!

Take TIME!
Find your ME TIME!
What’s this? Who knows! You decide!

Mine is either a Bath closing myself off from the world, or spending time outside with Nature!

Take TIME to relax

Take TIME to bring yourself back in the PRESENT IN THE HERE AND NOW!

Take TIME to CALM that BUSY MIND

WHAT HAPPENS NOW COUNTS WE CAN’T CHANGE THE PAST, WE CAN HELP THE FUTURE BUT THE HERE AND NOW IS WHAT COUNTS!