We’re all fighting for our lives in one way or another.

For some of us that can mean physical challenges around our own health or the health of those we care for.

For others it can mean being held captive by the prison that is our own mind. Where our psyche only takes time off from reminding us what were rubbish at to remind us what we should be feeling guilty about.

Like SATs and GCSE results, the data we share on Facebook and Instagram doesn’t tell the whole story. All of us, every one, are walking around with huge Vulnerability Vultures stuffed in our rucksacks, hidden under our coats, or if needs must shoved up our tops – anywhere out of sight, but never really out of mind.

The good news is that that’s the nature of being a human.

Caring.

About how our thoughts, words and actions impact those around us and our own selves.

I’ve noticed that, as teachers we’re generally quite good at the first but a bit rubbish at the second.

What would it look like if we were more compassionate towards ourselves? Or even showed the same amount of compassion to ourselves as we did to those in school or those at home?

What if you lured me into the photocopier room and opened your backpack just a peak. Just enough to let a slither of light shine on the wrinkly bald head of your Vulnerability Vulture?

What if seeing you, as someone I admire, respect and like, are not entirely together is a massive relief. Not only do I realise that I’m not the only one who has challenges, I’m also inspired that you are carrying such an enormous big fat bird around with you but still show up with your warts and all whole self everyday to serve your learners.

Teachers are united – even if it feels like we’re only united in oppression! We are all in the same boat, only it’s not made of gravy but JAM. We’re all Just About Managing when it comes to wellbeing and if there is one thing we can be sure of it’s that revolution never starts at the top, but with those on the ground who care enough to make a change.

If we want answers we can read a book.

If we want experts, YouTube is full of them.

And if we want to feel more whole we can connect with each other over the parts that we feel are missing.

In the run up to Christmas, let’s reach out to a colleague and encourage them in the same way we do your learners. Say something positive about their performance or share something you’re struggling with yourself.

As the great Mr_Patel says: We’re all in this together.

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