Teaching in the UK as an overseas educator is an enriching experience. However, it can also present unique challenges that lead to stress and anxiety, affecting mental well-being. At iCan Teach UK, we believe in fostering more conversations about teacher anxiety, a topic especially significant for overseas teachers joining the education community in the UK.
Anxiety isn't limited to occasional worry or fear. For many international teachers adapting to a new educational system and culture, it may escalate into a more serious condition. Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Panic Disorder, PTSD, or Phobias can manifest through this anxiety, leading to symptoms like difficulty sleeping and increased susceptibility to illnesses.
What Triggers Anxiety in Overseas Teachers?
The process of teaching abroad can ignite anxiety. Continuous stress leads to 'burnout,' stemming from navigating new curriculums, interacting with demanding parents, or managing subtle and continuous stress. Overseas teachers may feel isolated, as their unique pressures may be different from local educators, exacerbating anxiety.
Finding Relief: Strategies for Overseas Teachers
Being anxious shouldn't halt your teaching career in the UK. iCan Teach UK recommends:
Seeking Professional Help: Consult a GP or use resources provided by iCan Teach UK.
Prioritizing Mental Health: Embrace work boundaries and ensure sufficient rest.
Exploring Outside Interests: Engage in hobbies that connect you with the local community.
Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle: Regular exercise and nutritious diets support overall well-being.
Choosing the Right Work Environment: We can assist in finding a school that aligns with your mental well-being.
Supporting Overseas Teachers: A Role for Schools
Schools must actively address anxiety in overseas teachers by recognizing achievements, teaching stress management, ensuring breaks, and spreading work evenly.
Special Considerations: Overseas Supply Teacher and New Teacher Anxiety
Proper preparation, understanding school policies, seeking agency support like iCan Teach UK, and building relationships can ease the transition for overseas teachers.
Resources and Support
iCan Teach UK collaborates with numerous organizations providing guidance:
Begin a Career in the UK with iCan Teach UK
Seeking a new role that aligns with your aspirations as an overseas teacher? iCan Teach UK offers various positions in our partner schools across the UK, suitable for your needs.