5 Highly-Rated Self-Care Books for Educators
By Chelsea Buchanan
According to a 2021 State of the U.S. Teacher Survey, more than 75 percent of teachers reported frequent job-related stress. Educators have always experienced stress in their profession, but the pandemic has been a significant factor in increased teacher stress. The survey also found that nearly one in four teachers were likely to leave their jobs in 2021, compared to one in six, on average, prior to the pandemic.
With so many educators feeling overwhelmed and overworked, it’s important to find resources that can support self-care and cultivate wellbeing––both in school and at home. There are many great self-care books available to help guide educators to be courageous, take time for yourself, find happiness, and be more mindful. Because there are so many self-care books available for educators, we’ve created this list of some of the top-rated self-care books that teachers can benefit from reading.
Here are five highly rated self-care books for educators to read this year:
1. Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brené Brown (4.24 stars on Goodreads)
Dr. Brené Brown is a research professor who has spent the past two decades studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy. In this book, she presents a powerful new vision that encourages readers to embrace vulnerability and imperfection, live wholeheartedly, and courageously engage in their lives.
2. Take Time for You: Self-Care Action Plans for Educators by Tina H. Boogren (4.08 stars on Goodreads)
In this book, Tina H. Boogren offers a range of manageable research-based strategies based on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs that will guide educators to develop their own individualized self-care plan. Through mindfulness, reflection, and daily self-care activities, teachers can thrive in both their professional and personal lives.
3. Real Happiness at Work: Meditations for Accomplishment, Achievement, and Peace by Sharon Salzberg (4.03 stars on Goodreads)
A mindfulness expert and meditation teacher, Sharon Salzberg shares valuable guidance in this book for cultivating mindfulness, compassion, and awareness at work. Helpful for anyone in any profession, this book is focused on improving the positives of working life while mitigating the negative feelings of stress, exhaustion, and feeling overwhelmed and underappreciated.
4. The Way of Mindful Education: Cultivating Well-Being in Teachers and Students by Daniel Rechtschaffen (4.02 stars on Goodreads)
Decades of research indicate the impressive benefits of mindfulness in social, emotional, and cognitive development. A practical guide for mindfulness in life and in school, this book invites educators to take advantage of this vital tool to cultivate attention, compassion, and wellbeing in students, as well as in themselves.
5. 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works by Dan Harris (3.91 stars on Goodreads)
Good for any adult struggling with happiness and fulfillment, this book follows author Dan Harris’ adventure through spirituality, mindfulness, and self-help in order to find a way to be happier. 10% Happier takes readers from neuroscience to societal factors that affect happiness and presents a practical way to become happier that is truly achievable.
These are just a few of the best self-care books to help educators lead more mindful and fulfilling lives. Another way educators can improve their wellbeing is by cultivating the same social-emotional learning (SEL) skills that they teach to students. Decades of experience and research prove that SEL can be taught and modeled but must also be intentionally practiced. Choosing an SEL curriculum that supports educators and helps them grow socially and emotionally is one of the best steps to improving wellbeing of the school community.
About the author
Chelsea Buchanan is the Director of Educational Services for 7 Mindsets and oversees the implementation of curriculum and social-emotional learning best practices in schools. She works with thousands of SEL leaders across the country as they implement 7 Mindsets and ultimately change the culture in their schools. Chelsea manages overall implementation and ensures great execution of professional development, coaching, and support to the individual schools and districts.