Dr. MC's Self-Care Cabaret

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The Power of No

Dr. MC's Self-Care Cabaret
Dr. MC's Self-Care Cabaret
The Power of No
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Today’s episode is a conversation with Dr. Jackie Boivin. She is an Assistant Professor of Elementary and Early Childhood Education at Bridgewater State University in Bridgewater, MA. A former elementary school teacher who uses her past experience in the field to contextualize her instruction in teacher preparation.

 

These two dynamic Dr.’s were in the same cohort for their doctoral studies and have been fast friends ever since. Their conversation discusses the critical need for self-care in all areas of life (even when planning a wedding). Movement breaks, hydration, and most importantly, the Power of saying No to toxic people are several tools discussed in this episode.

 

As always we love to hear from our listeners! Reach out to podcast@drmcselfcare.com with any questions or topics you’d like to hear about on future episodes.

 

EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

Speaker 0 00:00:25 Welcome to another podcast episode of Dr. MCs self care cavalry. I’m Theresa Melito-Conners, a PhD level self-care expert in the greater Boston area with a passion for helping others find their spotlight and recognize the importance of caring for themselves. Today’s episode is a conversation with my PhD partner in crime, Dr. Jackie Bowman, Jackie and I embarked on the PhD journey in 2016 together and developed an unstoppable bond. We supported each other through the dissertation process, which can be quite challenging to navigate, but having each other definitely helped us both. We managed to finish and successfully defend our dissertations during the summer of 2019, since then it has been nonstop for us. We have coauthored one published chapter in an educational handbook and another one in the editing phase. But Jackie has been up to a lot on her own as well. Dr. Jackie Bowman is an assistant professor of elementary and early childhood education at Bridgewater state university.
Speaker 0 00:01:33 She is a former elementary school teacher who uses her past experience in the field to contextualize her instruction in teacher preparation, Dr. Bowman’s research specialization is in multicultural education and anti-racist pedagogy. She is the author of the book exploring the role of the school principal in predominantly white middle schools, school leadership to promote multicultural understanding. She teaches a math methods course to elementary teacher candidates at Bridgewater state. She integrates her knowledge of project based place based education to her multidisciplinary approach, to fostering conceptual understanding of mathematics. She also teaches a course titled deconstructing racism, yourself, your world, your schools, in which students explore their unconscious biases and how these impact the world around them contributing to systemic racism like modern day racial segregation of public education. Her largest passion is authentically connecting academics with social justice. I am honored to call Jackie my friend and call me
Speaker 1 00:02:54 Jackie. Thanks so much for joining us today on the Dr. MC self care cabaret podcast. I’m delighted to chat with you. And so let’s get started. Question one, will you tell us a little bit about your doctoral research and why you chose that topic
Speaker 2 00:03:12 Gladly? Well, it’s a pleasure to be here and getting to talk about my doctoral research is a great way to start because that’s how we met Dr. MC proud alumni of Lesley university. And I mean, I have to say, I really wouldn’t have gotten through the program without your support, your camaraderie team, a hundred percent. You supported me in the topic that I chose and you really pulled out the fact that my topic had value and I could really vent anything and everything to you about it, even if it was like, does this wording make sense? Is this a controversial way to present this? Because my topic within itself can have some little sticky areas, especially as a white person trying to navigate something that I was having my own journey on. So my dissertation research was on the role that principals play, supporting white teachers, teaching race and multiculturalism to white students in rural schools.
Speaker 2 00:04:22 And I chose this topic because that’s what I was living day in and day out. I was a white fifth grade teacher in a rural, predominantly white elementary school. And I really did feel unsupported by administration when I was trying to authentically integrate an emphasis on race in my teaching. So when I sought out support, there really wasn’t literature available or resources for this all white situation that I was in. So I saw this gap in the literature, which is kind of like in PhD terms, that’s like your gold. You really need to find that gap. That’s your, you’re striving to fill that gap. And so I chose that as my topic and pursued it. The process was a trying one, but I had my team player throughout it. And, uh, you know, we finished
Speaker 1 00:05:15 Drying process, but yet you also supported me though as well. But please go back to talking about your job.
Speaker 2 00:05:24 Well, then the topic itself, you know, was one that there was a need for, and after I put that together, I got it published in principal magazine because this is a topic that people are hungry for. And after that, I put together a proposal which was approved to publish a book on it. And the book was published through Rutledge. And what’s unique about the book is yes, it’s based on my dissertation, which is all fine and great, but I really noticed that it was a bit a band-aid approach. And when I say a band-aid approach, I’m referring to the fact that we’re talking about how can white teachers do better with teaching white students? Well, that right there, an all white dynamic, if a population in a school is an issue and my research about like, how can we do better with that? Wasn’t addressing the fact that the situation was presenting itself in the first place, right? So I then implemented what we call critical race theory, which is basically seeing race and everything. And what I did was I looked at my study and said, you know, there’s a lot principals can do to support white teachers or white students. But what we really have to be looking at is we shouldn’t have white teachers only teaching white students, that’s racial segregation in schools. So it needs to be a more of a systemic change, which then boils down to economics, housing, et cetera, which is a much larger issue that needs to be addressed.
Speaker 1 00:06:57 Sure, no, it’s fascinating. Cause your topic was very timely. And as we know, my dissertation topic was self-care and renewal for leaders and teachers, which of course I’ve talked about before, but that was also became an incredibly timely topic. As we then shortly after both of us, defended world changed a bit with the COVID pandemic and we had to, I mean, self care and renewal is now, I mean more critical than ever. It was always critical, but even now teachers are really, and people in general are really feeling the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. So I love that. Yes, we definitely did. Did support ourselves each other through that, um, journey for sure. So now we’re going to go back to self care just a bit, and I’d like you to tell me how you like to practice self-care
Speaker 2 00:07:50 Well on the PhD journey that wasn’t easy. And so I really had to take some time to get to know myself and what’s going to work for me with a crazy busy schedule. I was teaching full-time. I was, you know, trying to balance a PhD in the background, not to mention I was keeping it under wraps out of fear of not being able to maintain employment, because if they knew I was getting a PhD, then I might lose my position because I then qualified for more pay. So I just kept it on the down wall just because I liked where I was and I wanted to kind of finish up the program with a job. Um, so that process was, was a really interesting one within itself and it was taxing emotionally. So I really had to find ways to decompress. Um, during the PhD, I started doing some Tai Chi, which then I also taught my students and we did that to decompress after we had lunch and recess because I had to get them grounded, turn off the lights, we add calming music.
Speaker 2 00:08:54 And we did some Tai for about 10 minutes. So that was a really great outlet, um, that has actually transcended into some yoga practice that I do now. And my husband and I do yoga after work every single day, which is amazing. Like just take 10 minute classes. They’re awesome. Spite them online for free and do just 10 minutes sitting at the computer. It like just releases all the pressure in your shoulders and it gets you slow down because during the Workday, I’m just go, go, go. And that was during my PhD as well. So just doing things to slow myself down because I am kind of like an Energizer bunny and people think that I drink like that a hundred percent. That
Speaker 1 00:09:37 Is definitely a great way to describe. I love it.
Speaker 2 00:09:43 And then they see how much I do. And they’re like, you don’t sleep. Do you? But here’s the kicker. I sleep a solid eight hours every single night, big stickler about my bedtime. Like to the point of it being, you know, borderline ridiculous. I’ll tell my husband that goes to eight. I’m sorry, but I’m not going to be my best self tomorrow. And sometimes I’ll, you know, have some wiggle room, but I really try to stay true to that because I want to function my best every day. So rest, and also I’ve gotten a lot better at drinking water during the day. Hard. That’s really hard. Especially as a teacher, when you don’t get like restroom breaks during the day, that was a challenge for me. Um, so now that I’m no longer in the classroom and I can like, I’m a college professor and can leave and use the restroom, I’m a lot better about staying hydrated. So those are some things that I do to take good care of myself and just having time with my husband, I make a lot of time to just have us together and say, no, I’m not going to go work that late tonight.
Speaker 1 00:10:48 That’s awesome. You bring up a couple of really important points that I want to highlight and make sure our listeners are picking up on it also. So you mentioned, you know, 10 minutes, so short, quick, a lot of times people feel like if they don’t have epic amounts of time to spend doing something, you know, typically a yoga class is what, 75, maybe 90 minutes, but that’s okay if you only have 10 minutes do 10 minutes and you feel benefits from this Jackie, right.
Speaker 2 00:11:17 So much so that my balance is so much better. I get made fun of by my family. They call me thump Alina, cause I’ll just trip over. All right. So now I’ve been doing yoga. I am so much better on my feet. I’m more balanced. I’ve gotten better 10 minutes a day. I’ve gotten so much better on the moves that I’ve gone from beginner to intermediate, I can say, wow,
Speaker 1 00:11:46 Is there a particular, um, instructor or class or you just search 10 minute yoga? Or how are you finding this?
Speaker 2 00:11:52 It started free yoga, just like Googling, you know, and finding someone YouTube. But then I wanted something a little bit more structured so I could kind of see progress. So I got a free, like, I don’t know what got like free months from Peloton and you don’t need like a biker or anything. And they had a, they do so much yoga content and they have classes that are longer too. So on the weekends, I can’t go out for like a walk on a Saturday. I’ll do a longer class because it’s like, well, this is something good for my body that I can do here in the living room. Um, so yeah, that’s been a really great one. They also have meditation classes on there and they have different themes to like focus on calming, to focus on positivity. And I’ll do those like in the middle of the day, just to kind of ground myself for the afternoon. For example, if I know I have a lot coming up so that I just feel more ready to go,
Speaker 1 00:12:45 Oh, that’s awesome. And never sacrificing sleep. That is so important. And I always say that that is one of the ways I got through the doctoral program because even I did not pull all nighters writing dissertation, chapters, and revisions and whatnot. I couldn’t, I knew that I wouldn’t be able to function and the sleep is so, so important. So I do, although maybe a little less regimented, it sounds then you, although I could be a little more, but I really try to get that minimum eight hours of sleep at night because I just am not going to set myself up for success. If I don’t the next day I feel like junk. Yeah.
Speaker 2 00:13:24 It’s so true. I also got a Fitbit that monitors my sleep and it gives me a score. So it’s very cool to see, like, yes, I got an 85. I’ll take a B all right. As a teacher, you’re like, what grade did I get that? And it also yells at me to get up because working remotely, like you just set so much. So it’ll, it’ll like kind of buzz at me. Like you’ve been sitting really long. Maybe just get up and do a lap around the living room.
Speaker 1 00:13:51 That’s awesome though. Sometimes we need those little reminders and I think that that’s, um, that’s great. So I love that. So your next, my next question, actually, you may have answered some of this, but so how did you manage to take care of yourself through the PhD program? Working full time, starting a new relationship, and somehow always with a smile. I
Speaker 2 00:14:11 Love that you added in always with a smile. I I’ve been known to be a very positive person. I do credit a lot of that to my sleep, but I think that really what got me through my PhD program, I would say the starting a new relationship was probably the thing that got me through. Um, Craig is my now husband, but we started seeing each other, uh, less than a year into the program. I had started as a very young, independent woman. I was 24 when I started the PhD pro my birthday was done. So it was, I was 23, turning 24. So was very young and I just really needed someone to vent to daily, to get to hang out with and give me breaks. And he was that one, um, from having a bad day to coming home to my favorite dinner, waiting for me and having someone to go on adventures with when I needed a break, he was always there.
Speaker 2 00:15:11 So I’d say he really took care of me in a lot of ways. And also just having an outlet of focusing on someone else. It’s easy to be working full time and pursuing a PhD and be very tunnel vision on what you’re doing and not be self-centered, but really just be focused on your goals that having someone else to look at and say, how are you doing today? Tell me about your day was really great because it makes you reflect on your own problems and issues when you’re helping someone else. And that I think is really good for your own psyche during that, during a really busy trying time, I would also say that what got me through is the word. No, and that’s a really hard,
Speaker 1 00:15:57 No, it’s a complete sentence. So my gosh, no. Perfect. So tell me more about that
Speaker 2 00:16:04 During the PhD. I remember at our orientation, they said, there’s going to be times where you’re not going to fold the laundry. You’re gonna say no. And I was thinking to myself, oh my gosh, not folding the laundry. Like what? That’s just going to sit there. No, I’m not okay with that. But I still learned that the power of no meant you need to prioritize your doctoral, work over a lot of different things and you need that people that are going to get that. So it really shows you who’s there for you 120% because you need a group of people around you, friends, family, significant others who understand that. You’re going to say, now I got a paper to write. Nice. I really have to get this discussion board up for this class that I’m in. I’m sorry. And they go, okay. They don’t make you feel bad.
Speaker 2 00:16:57 They don’t question it. They just support you and go, I bet you’re going to nail it. And that’s what I found from my father. He has been nothing but a support. He would listen to me, read my papers out loud cue from the day I got in to the day that we got hooded, he has just been at my side, my biggest support. And also my husband, Craig, who undoubtedly has been just my sounding board for everything. My biggest support. When I met him, I met him in a coffee shop, working on my qualifying paper in the PhD program. That
Speaker 1 00:17:36 Was our second one was tell folks, so they know that’s the literature review. So this is where we had to like read all the literature on our topic, books
Speaker 2 00:17:46 In the world and have no eyeballs. So I’m sitting in a coffee shop working on this and he’s like, so what, what are you working on? I said, oh, it’s for my PhD. I’m going to be a college professor. One day we just met like five minutes into the meeting. I just dropped the bomb. Yup. So I’m going to be a doctor and be a college professor. So I think he didn’t run screaming, didn’t run. And he said, that’s amazing. And then a couple months later, we went to a red Sox game in Boston. I said, I’m going to ride a duck boat one day and it’s going to be my victory parade when I have that PhD. And he said to me, I can’t wait there with you when that happens. And I knew from that moment, wow, this guy it’s like when I have the PhD.
Speaker 2 00:18:37 Huh. Okay. Then, but in all seriousness, you know, he understood when I had to say no, I, I had different priorities than a lot of other, um, young women, my age, um, getting a doctorate, trying to get into higher ed and I wasn’t one to want to go out to any bars or anything like that. I said, I really, my preference is being home and making progress toward this. Cause I want to finish in a timely manner. And he was all on board and, and he’s been on board with all of my professional, my professional escapades sense. And uh, I still say no. And you away. I think he started learning to say no to. So I think it’s a great thing we’ve learned.
Speaker 1 00:19:22 I love it. I think we’re going to title the episode, the power of, no, I love it. No, it’s important. And I think this is great. And even, you know, for our listeners who maybe are not in doctoral programs, um, you know, it’s still those setting those boundaries and having that support is really important, no matter what you’re trying to achieve, no matter what your goals are. And my husband’s certainly played a huge factor in my success. Also in the doctoral program, I definitely didn’t do laundry. I still don’t, but we will let that go. Um, doing dishes. I mean, he had to, I mean, he chose to support me and, and, you know, help me. And he’s always been super supportive, but especially during that doctoral program was particularly challenging. And I am a little bit older than you. So I like going to bars and like doing typical, like young 20 ish things wasn’t necessarily what I was interested in doing, but I definitely like we bought a house in the midst of it.
Speaker 1 00:20:18 And there were times that, you know, I didn’t see my friends for a stretches of time because I couldn’t because I needed to be focusing on that. And of course, um, you know, you mentioned having your dad as a support, my mom had to listen to the same, the same reading papers. Hey, can you look at this? Like between the two of them? That was definitely huge. So I’m so thrilled that you found that support system during that time when you really needed it. And obviously beyond that as well, because Craig’s a great guy and that’s very cool.
Speaker 2 00:20:48 That’s a huge part though. B be selective with the people that you welcome into your bubble. That’s important self-care and, and extracting the toxic because there are toxic people. And if someone’s not contributing to your healthiness and your success and who you want to be, then maybe that’s a sign that you need space.
Speaker 1 00:21:09 Oh, a hundred percent. And it’s hard. Sometimes those people are the people closest to us and we have to set those boundaries. I mean, I have to do that with a member of my family and kind of put up that boundary because it’s not good for me. Right. To allow that in contributor go. I excellent. So you did mention, um, Craig is your now husband, which is very exciting. And you’re coming up on, is it the first year of man? Wow. This July, right? You were a COVID bribe,
Speaker 2 00:21:45 The COVID bride. That was an interesting thing that required self care, that whole process of wedding planning. Right.
Speaker 1 00:21:52 So let’s do some wedding tips for self-care tips for brides. What do you think? What would you offer for self?
Speaker 2 00:21:57 I would offer cakes some time and just think about, is it a wedding or is it about the marriage? Because I’m all about the marriage and that’s the day after the wedding onward for like till death. Do we part I’m all about that? The wedding, yeah. Super magical. It’s your day. And you want it special, but things are going to go awry and that’s fine. So I think having that mindset really makes a difference and it gets you to, if you accepting, if there’s just a little hiccup here and there, and, uh, I’d also say that as you’re planning your wedding to take good care of yourself, it’s just love who you are and how you look. Because I think there’s a lot of pressure to like lose 10 pounds for the wedding day. Or you need to put on a ton of makeup that day, not even look like yourself, who you are because that day I don’t really wear makeup.
Speaker 2 00:22:57 So that day of my wedding, um, I had someone that was at our wedding, who said, I brought my makeup kit in case you wanted me to like, do you up and everything. All of my wedding party said, Jackie, you never wear makeup. Why would you do that today? We want you to look like you. And I had talked to my husband prior to that. I was like, should I like go somewhere and get done up? He says, you’re not going to look like you. I want you to look like you. So that’s what I ended up doing. I went all natural for my wedding photos, um, because I wanted to be me and I was totally good with it. My way stayed the same didn’t budge on anything. And I was me. So I think that’s really what brides should take that pressure off. And they’re marrying who you are right now. Not who you’re going to be months from now in that wedding dress.
Speaker 1 00:23:48 I love that. That is really important. And you looked beautiful in all the photos. Of course it being COVID. I was not able to be there with you in person, but I was there with you in spirit. Certainly. Um,
Speaker 2 00:23:59 You’re the thing I had to say no to people for the wedding, because I just couldn’t. So that was an instance of saying no, but I knew who I invited. Oh, got it. You know, that they weren’t selected because they love me. So I had been very selective in my, my grouping, the people who I surround myself with are all understanding, awesome people who love me. So that’s another instance of no working out.
Speaker 1 00:24:25 I love it. The power of no, the power of that. I really wish I had met you maybe a few years sooner than we did. Um, because preparing for my wedding actually sent me into, um, a very deep eating disorder spiral. I always had kind of dabbled in and I know we’ve talked about this, but, um, I’ve always kind of struggled with weight for many years, but during that time to try to, you know, that mindset, that society tells us how you have to look and be a thin bride and shredding for the wedding. And I don’t even know there was so many stupid hashtags. I was trends and just putting myself through that was not. Yeah. Um, my healthiest, um, time period, unfortunately. Um, however, I did do my own makeup because of that, very reason that I wanted to look like me. And at one point I even, I remember saying to my mother, should I, you know, hire someone to do my makeup.
Speaker 1 00:25:25 And she was like, why you do your makeup gorgeous all the time? And you have like, what are they going to do that you can’t do you have stage training? You’ve been doing makeup. Like I had to do makeup. And I was like, yeah, you’re right. And I’m like, of course, like, so I looked like me on the wedding, which was fine and, you know, whatever the weight issues and that was not solved by, you know, stressing myself out and doing some pretty, um, huh. Not healthy things to get, to achieve that weight that I held on to just about through the wedding. And then that was about it as it started, all my methods began to backfire on me, but that’s neither, that could be a different podcast episode. Um, the, just as I love that though, be yourself and love yourself because your partner is marrying you for you and what you look like. And if they’re not, if they’re only marrying you before, because what you can transform yourself into for one special day, then that maybe, I don’t know if that’s going to be a real successful marriage.
Speaker 2 00:26:27 Yeah. And then are you looking at those photos? Do you even see yourself? Cause if you want to look like that for one day, is that really you
Speaker 1 00:26:35 Tricky? For sure. And definitely like focus on the marriage because that’s, what’s important that one day is amazing, but it goes so fast and it’s so crazy and you have to prioritize like what’s important. Like, is it important to you to have, I know for me, I wanted more people. Like I was looking for a big, like 200 person event. So that’s what I made work. But for somebody else, like if that wasn’t your priority, then of course like don’t do that because somebody else did that. Or you read somewhere that you should do that. Like it can be five people. That’s fine. Well, it’d be two people down at, down at the town hall doing it. Like it matter what’s important is what happens the next day.
Speaker 2 00:27:17 It’s your day. That’s it.
Speaker 1 00:27:20 So I’m going to ask you kind of a silly question now. So most of my guests thus far have predominantly hailed from north shore, greater Boston area of Massachusetts, but you, my friend and my first guest from Western ness. So I’m wondering if there are any misconceptions you would like to dispel or truths you wish to confirm.
Speaker 2 00:27:41 I love this question on so many levels. So I went through Matt’s born and raised and I only recently moved to central mass, but I think a lot is getting closer to Boston, to inching inching. Right? So Wister county, I guess, you know, we’re making our way. Um, but I would say a lot of people from Eastern mass, often Columbus central mass in Western mass, just all one big mammoth JAMA, right? Like over there, over that say that, you know, overall, um, central mass is very much very similar to, um, central mass. Like it’s Western central. There are a lot of similarities. I’ve, I’ve noticed that in the Western part of the state. Yeah. We have a lot of outlets for artsy things. Um, very liberal in north Hampton, which is, um, an area where I went to college. So very, um, very left leaning in a lot of ways.
Speaker 2 00:28:42 But what I really loved about living in that area was just the level of acceptance and diversity. I went to Smith college, um, where I got to meet people from all over the world, which was phenomenal. I think one misconception I’d like to dispel is that I’ve heard this before. Is that people in Western mass, they’re all like hippies, drinking, craft beer on their back porch. I can say that you’re not really people like that, but I’m not one of them. We’re not all like that. There is a very much a culture of like sustainability and wanting to eat local, a lot of like farm to table, farm shares, um, CSS, things like that. Um, so there is a, quite an emphasis of that, like go into the co-op to get your organic produce. Lot of people like that in Western mass, like not using plastic bags, we don’t do that.
Speaker 2 00:29:36 We only use our reuse bags where I’m from. So, um, and I still do that by the way, when I go out shopping, we do not use it. So just being very like environmentally conscious is as a norm there. Um, but overall I’d say it’s, it’s a very welcoming place. Lot of people like the outdoors. So like a lot of hiking, um, but you can make of it what you want, but it’s a really awesome place. And if you haven’t gotten a chance to go visit Western mass, do it. It’s cool. It’s not as far as you might think it is.
Speaker 1 00:30:09 Yeah. Right. That’s awesome. I love it. I definitely I’ve been, I have been to Springfield like once, but I was little and um, I spent a lot of time in my previous position, um, out in, at Marlboro, um, hosting events there, but in the central, not central. No, that doesn’t qualify. All right then. Nevermind. I didn’t spend much time in central.
Speaker 2 00:30:37 I feel like is not, not going to give you a Western mass vibe to the extent
Speaker 1 00:30:42 It was what I was getting at. I need to go further. I want to go
Speaker 2 00:30:46 Unique Springfield. You gotta go up from Springfield. You gotta get into Hampshire county. Yup. Pioneer valley. You need to get to the pioneer valley.
Speaker 1 00:30:55 Okay. I need to get out to Western mass, I think is the takeaway here. I have not explored that part of my home state and I should, and I should go hang out with Jackie and do it. So I’ll give you a tour. We’ll schedule that for some time. All right. Last question. You have a lot of experiences. We’ve talked about being a classroom teacher and now a college professor and everything else you’ve done and achieved. So I’m wondering though, do you have any thoughts on self care from a higher ed perspective as opposed to a K-12 focus? So are there any, like any differences you see there or advice maybe for someone who’s a college professor versus a K-12 teacher?
Speaker 2 00:31:36 Yeah. They practice what you preach educators at any level. I don’t care if you’re teaching K-12 higher. Ed. If you’re going to talk to your students about eating well, exercising, getting sleep, the whole gambit, you have to be a role model for them because like it or not, you are a role model and they look up to you doesn’t matter how old they are. My college students aren’t even that much younger than I am, but they still look at me as someone who is an educator and puts forth knowledge to others in cultivates future teachers. And I need to show that I’m doing the things I’m recommending to them. And the same went when I was teaching fifth grade, they looked at me as a role model. And I mean, all I would take is like getting a new pair of running shoes by Nike.
Speaker 2 00:32:27 And then they’re all getting their Nike shoes and you’re like, wow, okay. They really heard that I got new shoes and they did the same. So with my little mini copycats, it was so flattering. It was so, but in all honesty, that’s what it’s about. Like, you’re, you’re a role model for them. And I think that right now, we’re in a time that self care really needs to be a focus because my close students really hit a wall halfway through the semester. We had no spring break, they were exhausted. They had a lot of work ahead of them. And I had to take a step back and say, am I even giving them a chance to practice self care right now? Because they have a lot of work on top of them right now. So I decided to cut a few things here and there to try to alleviate them a bit more and talk with them, taking the time to say, what are you doing?
Speaker 2 00:33:20 Like five, 10 minutes. How are you feeling? What are you doing to take care of yourself? Like, can we just share a little bit? And one girl says I love carbs. So I just made a giant thing of Mac and cheese last night I ate most of it. And everyone was like, and we’re like, do you feel better? She’s like, yeah, like I don’t really need carbs. Now. It just satisfied me. And then another girl says I got a gym membership and I went at midnight last night and it was like midnight. And she’s like, I couldn’t sleep. So it was something to go do. And we’re like, well, did you feel better? And then it was like a round of applause. All right. We all have our things. It looks different on everybody. And a lot of things aren’t going to work for another person, right? Because self-care is like, it’s not one size fits all. It’s ding, ding, ding, ding. It’s not one size fits all the doctor and see,
Speaker 1 00:34:15 I love it. So keep going. I cut you off. I just got excited because that was such a, such an important point.
Speaker 2 00:34:21 It’s such an important point though, because it does look different for everyone. Every age, every gender at every race, every ethnicity it’s going to look different and we need to be respectful of that and not be lecture-y either like you need to do this. No. I think what we need to say is you need to find what’s going to work for you and how can I support you in that? How can I help you have time to make sure you sneak a quick workout in or get to go to that yoga class? All right. Do you need an extension on that? Because it’s not worth staying up all night. Sometimes I’ll get emails from students at like two in the morning. And then I say to the student the next day, I don’t want to see that again. The next day it’d be a few more hours late. Like that’s just, no, that made me sad. No,
Speaker 1 00:35:09 Well that’s cause you’re a great teacher and empathetic to your students’ needs. And I think that’s really important though. You know, and especially in the K-12 environment, there’s so much talk about social, emotional learning, and obviously wellness for our students, wellness for the adults too, and social, emotional learning for the adults. Like they neglect themselves in the process. And I know, you know, we focus on the students and of course there are a number one priority and we want to do all the great things for them. But we also have to take care of ourselves. If you don’t take care of yourself, it will impact your ability to care for others. Self care is other care.
Speaker 2 00:35:45 It’s so true. It’s so true in the teaching profession, I think is, is a great example of that. So get that sleep, have the energy for your students, you know, eat well because you need it. You need it to get through the day
Speaker 1 00:36:00 A hundred percent. And I think I had someone tell me in one of my presentations that they like the way I present my self-care workshops, because I it’s like a self care buffet. I give them all the different things. You can do all the different domains and so many different tools and tips and tricks in each domain. But ultimately it’s up to the person to pick and choose what’s going to work for them. And then in the heat of the moment, when they’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed and then their day to day, and they’re just going about life, that they know where to pull in those pieces, like now I need to meditate. Now I need to journal. I need to hydrate like, and being able to access that and integrate it into your life. So it’s seamless and it’s just what you do. So you show up in the world is the best you possible.
Speaker 2 00:36:44 Yeah. And I think showing up in the world is going to start looking different too. Cause post pandemic, these kiddos are going to be coming to school. And some of the coping mechanisms that they’ve learned aren’t going to work well for them because they may be coming into school, some PTSD from this pandemic. And I think trauma informed instruction is going to be of increasing interest because the pandemic was traumatizing in many ways. And I think it will have a lasting emotional effect on students of all ages. And there’s also inherent fear that things can shut down again. And a student coughing could be enough to trigger, you know, a PTSD reaction and a child who lost maybe a loved one to COVID. So I think there’s, there’s a lot of things that we need to be considering as educators when students are coming back to in-person learning that maybe they didn’t have to think about before and teaching some new self care strategies that are more tailored to a post pandemic world.
Speaker 1 00:37:49 Yeah. I think that’s a hundred percent. And I, I also think for the staff too, I mean, colleagues, we don’t know what each other has really experienced over this time, period. I mean, people have experienced tremendous loss. I’m not everyone’s certainly, but I mean, we just don’t know, like you don’t know what somebody else has just gone through me. This COVID impacted every single person in some way, good, bad or indifferent, like something wasn’t impacted. So it will be definitely key moving forward to be mindful of that and maybe give people a little extra bit of kindness and a little extra bit of grace as we, um, as we move forward.
Speaker 2 00:38:32 I like the vision of that world. I also think, you know, this is a time of really strong social justice unrest in our nation. And it’s a time to think about how our BiPAP students are practicing self care and ensuring that they, they have what they need to do. So, and I think that this goes for K-12. It goes for higher ed. I just really hope that educators are learning more about what it means to be supportive and caring toward all students in an inclusive way. You know, when the Georgia Florida trial for example, was on TV and the video clip was repeatedly played on BiPAP colleagues of mine express how exhausting it was to watch and how they were struggling with sleep without the verdict decided. This made me really think about how educators need to think about what events, you know, may trigger a need to remind students of self care because they’re consuming media constantly. And just being aware of, of all of these different facets that play into who our students are and how their self-care is going to be tailor made for them.
Speaker 1 00:39:39 Absolutely. I think we could do a whole nother podcast episode in the future on that topic we can dive deeper into that
Speaker 2 00:39:46 Certainly can unpack a lot more there.
Speaker 1 00:39:49 Excellent. So much for all that information you shared with us today and some really great points and excellent takeaways for our listeners. Um, so thank you so much, Dr. Bowman for being here with us.
Speaker 2 00:40:05 My pleasure. Thank you for having me
Speaker 0 00:40:14 That conversation was packed with lots of ideas about self care and takeaways. Jackie was so open and honest. I love it hen. Yes. I know it is clear that I need to explore Massachusetts a bit more. So let me know where I should go and what are the must do? Must try places. Jackie highlighted the importance and benefits of short, joyful movement with her 10 minute daily yoga practice, staying hydrated and never sacrificing sleep great tips. And I love the idea of setting boundaries and being careful with who you let into your bubble. Very, very important to recognize and important to do. Although depending upon who the toxic person is, I know this can be rather challenging, but placing those limits and saying no is critical to protecting your energy. For me, I am always reprioritizing my tasks and shifting my focus and energy. I don’t have time for things that drain me or for toxic people.
Speaker 0 00:41:18 Jackie and I are both blessed to have stellar support systems. And she reminds us of the importance of asking for help. And if I have any newlyweds listening, I would love to know your thoughts on self care for brides. The wedding industry is out of control and the amount of money people spend on one day is crazy. So what advice regarding self care can you offer brides to be for fun? I linked a blog post about my theater themed wedding spectacle in the episode notes. Lastly, Jackie really hit the nail on the head when she said that it is all about staying true to yourself and that self-care is not a one size fits all approach, but you are worth it. So figure out what works for you and do more of that. Thanks for listening to this episode. Remember to subscribe and rate this podcast on your preferred player. The ratings help us grow and share the message of self care. If you have comments, suggestions, or questions, please reach out directly by emailing podcast at Dr. MC self care.com that’s D R M C self care.com and come join the cast party at Dr. MCs self care cabaret on Facebook and Instagram at Dr. MC self-care or on my website, Dr. MC self care.com. Be sure to like subscribe and love me across all my social media platforms for the most up-to-date information on self care. See you next time. Stay well. Do good.

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