Managing an Anxiety Disorder at Work

Managing an Anxiety Disorder at Work

Learn about ways to manage your anxiety in the workplace, and know your rights if anxiety keeps you from performing at your best.

By Diana Rodriguez

Medically Reviewed by Niya Jones, MD, MPH

Dealing with an anxiety disorder can affect every area of your life, including your job. If your anxiety is severe, it can get in the way of your advancement at work, keeping you from getting the promotions and recognition that you deserve. So it’s important to learn how to manage your symptoms.

Workplace Anxiety: It’s a Common Thing

Work in itself is often stressful. Even without an anxiety disorder, it can be quite common to get nervous about leading a meeting or giving a presentation at work. “A lot of people do have performance anxiety,” notes Sally R. Connolly, LCSW, a therapist at the Couples Clinic of Louisville in Kentucky. “Anxiety before presentations is normal. Probably about 80 percent of people have it.” It makes many people uncomfortable to be the center of attention at work, and that added pressure can make an underlying anxiety disorder even worse, keeping you from accomplishing what you need to do.

Managing an anxiety disorder at work

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7 Exercises that can Reduce your Risk for Lower Back Pain

Every minute of every day, a network of muscles in your body’s core ceaselessly toils to shift stress and strain away from your lower spine — and by doing so keeps you free of lower back pain. That’s why it’s important to give those muscles an assist by making them stronger.

According to a review published in February 2016 in JAMA Internal Medicine, exercise can reduce a person’s risk of developing lower back pain, as well as someone’s need to take sick days related to lower back pain. In addition, a regular regimen of back exercises can help build muscles, making them better able to support your spine. Experts recommend back exercise sessions of 15 to 30 minutes, two to three times each week.

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Reflective Teacher: Teacher Self-Development

by Sophia McMillan
(Shane Corporation Ltd)

Training v Development

Teacher Training is not the same as Teacher Development.

Teacher Training Teacher Development
 Devised by academic management
 Pre-determined training course structure
 Addresses ‘global’ teaching issues*
 External evaluation
 Input from “experts”
 Unthinking acceptance of knowledge
 Teaching seen from ‘outside in’
 Stresses professional skill  Initiated by “self”
 Development through reflective process
 Addresses ‘local’ teaching issues*
 Self-evaluation
 Input from “participants”
 Personal construction of knowledge
 Teaching seen from ‘inside out
 Stresses personal development

* Note Global issues refer to teaching in general while ‘local’ issues refer to a teacher’s individual situation.

Teacher training is a good means of introducing new ideas and techniques but Teacher Development should really start with the teacher reflecting on what they do in class.

Development comprises two distinct features – awareness and direction; that is, awareness of where you are or what you do and the direction you wish to go in.

But how many of us have a clear and coherent view of ourselves as teachers? The more attention we pay to what happens in the classroom, the more chance we will discover something we want to change. Similarly, the more chance we will discover what things work and what do not.

The reflective teacher should be: experiencing → reflecting → conceptualizing → experimenting, and that this is a cyclical process.

Teachers need the opportunity to reflect on what happened in their lessons in order to think about new ideas and approaches. This is a ‘skill’ that needs to be nurtured, as teachers inexperienced with the process may feel they lack practical and theoretical knowledge needed for such reflection. But the more we reflect on and rationalize the classroom processes the more we develop a sense of self-control over what we do in the classroom.

Developing Self-Awareness in the Classroom
1) The Reflective Teacher
Pick a level or learner type (PG-KG, LE-HE, JHS, Adults etc) and after the class/es consider the following:
 What were the learners doing in the lesson?
 How did I give instructions?
 How often and for how long did the learners speak?
 What worked and why?
 What didn’t work and why?
 Changes I will make next time…

Considering your classes and what worked/did not work will allow you to ensure that “Golden moments” are encouraged and occur in other classes while problematic areas are avoided. This reflective format is especially good for collaborative analysis of lessons and that teachers can use that format as a springboard to discussing with colleagues any issues they have with particular classes.

2) A Teaching Journal
A second, more personal approach is the teaching diary or journal. This is a useful means of recording and reflecting on what happens in your class, what you do and how you go about things. At first it may seem a bit strange to keep a regular journal but it is worth the effort. Of course the best element of this form of record keeping is that it is private and is used for personal reflection only and of course can follow any format you prefer. Although it can also be a good way of preparing for feedback and other meetings.

Below is an example of a Teaching Journal. Consider a class you teach regularly and use the form to make notes.

Keeping a Teaching Journal

* What was your personal aim for this lesson and how did you achieve it?

* What are your personal aims for the next lesson with this class?

* What was the most successful part of the lesson and why?

* What was the least successful part of the lesson and why?

* Did the lesson keep to your overall plan and timetable?

* How did you feel in terms of motivation and energy in the lesson?

* Comparing the lesson with previous week’s classes can you see any trends appearing?

There is, of course, so much more you can record in your journal. Look at the topics below and consider how a journal could help you with them.

Lesson Planning
When thinking about your lesson be sure to include a brief lesson plan so looking back you can easily reflect on what things worked and what things didn’t work

You can also use the plan again when teaching the same lesson or a lesson with similar language and activities.

Learner Behaviour
Keep a record of learner activities whether good or bad. Can you identify any trends here? Is there anything affecting your learners’ behaviour at certain parts of the lesson or certain times of the year? Is there any evidence that learners react differently to different activities? This information will help you prepare for future lessons and anticipate problems.

Classroom Activities
Did some activities work better than others? Does this apply to one class only or all classes of the same level? As well as recording activities that worked take care to note activities that did not work so well and keep brief notes why this was.img_1115

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For Japan’s English teachers, rays of hope amid the race to the bottom

The major economic engines of Japan Inc. — car manufacturers, appliance giants and the like — have often been caught price-fixing: colluding to keep an even market share, squeeze competitors out and maintain “harmony.” Similarly, the commercial English-teaching business could be accused of wage-fixing: Rather than competing for talent, they have followed one another’s lead, driving down salaries to hamper career development, limit job mobility and keep foreign teachers firmly in their place.

We’ve all heard the tale of the scorpion and the frog. In a rising flood, the scorpion asks the frog for a piggy-back ride across the river. The frog refuses, complaining that the scorpion will sting it to death midway. The scorpion assures the frog it would do no such thing because they would both drown. The frog accepts the logic, lets the scorpion on its back and begins to swim.  Read More

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The Publications of Kevin Burns

Kevin Burns Publications, -a short list of my publications:

img_2714-5 Pictured: Kevin Burns

Jobs.ac.UK:

An Interview with a Teacher

Japan Today:

Japan and its Standardised Test Based Education System

ESL Article.com

In Defence of English Teaching

ELT News

The Forums about English Teaching need to take a Reality Check

The Vancouver Sun

Quest for a Better Lifestyle  (Originally published in the Vancouver Sun Newspaper)

How to teach English in Japan

Classroom Set Up

First Steps

Motivating Japanese University Students

Teaching University Students in Japan

English Teaching in Japan Universities

How to Improve your English (in Japanese)

ESL Books

ESL Activities: Children

Methods in Teaching English

U-Cann

7 Reasons Japanese Cannot Speak English after 4-6 years of Study  (In Japanese)

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Feeling Bloated

I know I do and some of my friends would say that’s because I’m full of hot air. Dr. Andrew Weil has some advice for ending the bloat

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Superfoods for Teachers and Everyone else

This list was compiled by nutritionists and of course each one had a different opinion, but these were foods were chosen by most of the experts:

Avocados

Apples

Blueberries

Eggs

Garlic

Pomegranates

Cabbage

Mushrooms

Almonds

Fish and fish oil

Flaxseeds

Dark chocolate

Red wine

-From Everyday Health.com

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