When did you get so out of whack? When did screenings, assessments, IEPs, therapy sessions, lesson planning and consulting become my everyday life? When did you invade my brain to the point that I find it almost impossible to think about anything else but Speech-Language Pathology? When did you start making me feel so burned out? SLP is a job that can completely overtake you. Why?
Because our priorities not in order and we have to do something about it. Sorry priorities...it's time to get a re-do.
- In the last few months being an SLP has been utterly exhausting. I work all day at work and then come home and work some more. I have no separation of work life/home life. Even if there were not reports to write, I would be finding some cute lesson to plan or looking at pinterest to find the next great thing in the world of SLP. It just takes over....and you don't even notice.
- That nagging thing the back of your head "I should get a head start on ____'s IEP". Ignore that thought.
- That thought of, "oh I will just bring this one report home.." later turns into "I just can't do it!" You then have to sit on your couch "enjoying your tv" while the speech file stares back at you. Guilt sets in.
- Why do we work like this? Because the work continues to get piled on. There is no caseload limit, there is no screening limit, there is no assessment limit. We are expected to take on whatever is given to us, even if it's not plausible that we get it done during our work hours. If we don't take it on and explain our overwhelming workload to higher ups, it seems like we are "complaining" or "not doing our job". All this leaves me feeling frazzled.
- So our options are to keep our heads down, work until you can't see straight and have a mental breakdown? OR sound like we are complaining about a legitimate concern and then nothing happens....we have got to change this. More of us need to speak up!
- We are also perfectionists (at least a few of us are) and feel like we have to take this all on, after all this is our profession that we chose and love. It's hard to admit that, "Hey...wait a minute....when did I become this way? When did it become normal to complete an insane amount of work in an unreasonable amount of time?"
- What part of our brains are just letting this happen?
Today I felt blindsided by how "work focused" I had become, carting 10 files home with me over MY vacation...and for what? To get a little bit ahead? I haven't been the happiest SLP because of this either. A constantly working person, is not a happy person. No wonder I am stressed and no wonder SLPs feel burned out.
Do you? Comment below with why you pledge to be WORK FREE for Spring Break.
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