Spend enough time teaching, and eventually you’ll run into a hard time. A time when you question what you do, why you do it, and if you are truly making a difference for the young people you teach.
If you don’t take care of yourself, it can lead to teacher burnout, and negative thoughts can drive you out of the profession altogether.
In these tough times, we need our teacher friends to reach out and help us. Sometimes all it takes is a few words of comfort, sometimes it takes more.
Our goal here is to provide you a list of self-care quotes to help you avoid those dark places, and help you remain the great teacher you are. Or to give you a quick reference to spend a little extra time showing your friend that the little things can make a huge difference.
So here’s a few favorite inspirational teacher quotes to help you through this school year, because teacher self-care means you can stay a superior teacher. Let’s go!
First things first, you have to put on your own oxygen mask to be a good teacher. Your own self-care will allow you to give your best when teaching kids that need the best teachers.
99 Inspirational Self-Care Quotes for Teachers
Taking Care of Yourself Quotes
- “When you say ‘yes’ to others, make sure you’re not saying ‘no’ to yourself.” -Paulo Coehlo
- “You can’t really be present for the people in your life if you aren’t taking care of yourself.” -Kerry Washington
- “Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.” -Rumi
- “If you feel ‘burnout’ setting in, if you feel demoralized and exhausted, it is best, for the sake of everyone, to withdraw and restore yourself.“ -Dalai Lama
- “It’s not selfish to love yourself, take care of yourself, and to make your happiness a priority. It’s necessary.” -Mandy Hale
- “The best thing you could do is master the chaos in you. You are not thrown into the fire, you are the fire.” –Mama Indigo
- “Care for your psyche…know thyself, for once we know ourselves, we may learn how to care for ourselves.” – Socrates
- “As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” –Maya Angelou
- “You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” -Buddha
- “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” –Albert Einstein
- “Worrying is carrying tomorrow’s load with today’s strength-carrying two days at once. Worrying doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.” –Corrie Ten Boom
- “Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.” -Anne Lamott
- “We turn not older with years but newer every day.” -Emily Dickinson
- “Self-compassion is simply giving the same kindness to ourselves that we would give to others.” –Christopher Germer
- “It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.” -Sir Edmund Hillary
- “You don’t have to control your thoughts. You just have to stop letting them control you.” –Dan Millman
- “I have come to believe that caring for myself is not indulgent. Caring for myself is an act of survival.” -Audrey Lorde
- “Only the disciplined are truly free. The undisciplined are slaves to moods, appetites and passions.” -Stephen Covey
- “Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.” -Oprah Winfrey
- “Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.” -M. Scott Peck
- “Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one.” -Eleanor Roosevelt
- “Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are.” -Malcolm S. Forbes
- “Self-care means giving yourself permission to pause.” -Cecilia Tran
- “Taking care of myself doesn’t mean “me first.” It means “me, too.” -L. R. Knost
- “If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.” -Martin Luther King Jr.
- “When I am constantly running there is no time for being. When there is no time for being there is no time for listening.” -Madeleine L’Engle
- “Don’t sacrifice yourself too much, because if you sacrifice too much there’s nothing else you can give and nobody will care for you.” -Karl Lagerfeld
- “Self love is an ocean and your heart is a vessel. Make it full, and any excess will spill over into the lives of the people you hold dear. But you must come first.” -Beau Taplin
- “The perfect man of old looked after himself first before looking to help others.” -Chuang Tzu
Taking Care of your Mental Health Quotes
The life of a teacher is hard work, and you have to come face to face with your true self and all its limitations.
Different people will be impacted in different ways, but the long hours required for good teaching will need to be handled.
Especially after a long day when you question if what you are doing is right for you.
- “Self-care is giving the world the best of you, instead of what’s left of you. -Katie Reed
- “An empty lantern provides no light. Self-care is the fuel that allows your light to shine brightly.” >-Unknown
- “You don’t have to be positive all the time. It’s perfectly okay to feel sad, angry, annoyed, frustrated, scared and anxious. Having feelings doesn’t make you a negative person. It makes you human.” -Lori Deschene
- “If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.” -Jack Kornfield
- “Love yourself first, and everything else falls in line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world. ” –Lucille Ball
- “If it’s out of your hands, it deserves freedom from your mind too.” -Ivan Nuru
- “Change what you can, manage what you can’t.” –Raymond McCauley
- “A calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that’s very important for good health.” -Dalai Lama
- “We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same.” -Carlos Castaneda
- “Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.” -Carl Jung
- “Rest and self-care are so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.” -Eleanor Brown
- “We would never tell someone with a broken leg that they should stop wallowing and get it together. We don’t consider taking medication for an ear infection something to be ashamed of. We shouldn’t treat mental health conditions any differently.” –Michelle Obama
- “Success is getting what you want, happiness is wanting what you get.” -W.P. Kinsella
- “When the well is dry, they know the worth of water.” -Benjamin Franklin
- “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” -Eleanor Roosevelt
- “My anxiety doesn’t come from thinking about the future but from wanting to control it.” –Hugh Prather
- “Positive vibes only’ isn’t a thing. Humans have a wide range of emotions and that’s OK.” –Molly Bahr
- “No amount of anxiety can change the future. No amount of regret can change the past.” –Karen Salmansohn
- “You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.” -Michael Jordan
- “There is one thing we can do, and the happiest of people are those who do it to the limit of their ability. We can be completely present.” –Mark Van Doren
Taking Care of Your Physical Health Quotes
It’s more than just healthy food and yoga, it’s about your own beliefs and how your health can improve your personal life; as well as your ability to give your most to those that need the most.
- “Keep your vitality. A life without health is like a river without water.” -Maxime Lagacé
- “A fit body, a calm mind, a house full of love. These things cannot be bought – they must be earned.” –Naval Ravikant
- “Be good to yourself. If you don’t take care of your body, where will you live?” –Kobi Yamada
- “Our bodies are our gardens – our wills are our gardeners.” –William Shakespeare
- “He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything.” –Arabian proverb
- “If you keep good food in your fridge, you will eat good food.” -Errick McAdam
- “Health is like money, we never have a true idea of its value until we lose it.” -Josh Billings
- “We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -George Bernard Shaw
- “Good health is not something we can buy. However, it can be an extremely valuable savings account.” –Anne Wilson Schaef
- “So many people spend their health gaining wealth, and then have to spend their wealth to regain their health.” -A. J. Reb Materi
- “The man who earns a million, but destroys his health in the process is not really a success.” -Zig Ziglar
- “Throughout history, great healers have discovered the power of breathing to enhance the physical, mental, and spiritual well-being of their people.” -Richard P. Brown
- “Keep your vitality. A life without health is like a river without water.” -Maxime Lagacé
- “Every living cell in your body is made from the food you eat. If you consistently eat junk food then you’ll have a junk body.” -Jeanette Jenkins
- “Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.” -John Muir
Removing Self-Doubt Quotes
The only person that can stop you is you. Sometimes we just need a bit of encouragement, especially new teachers who are dealing with all the pressures of running their first class.
Everyone in the teaching profession has doubted themselves at some point, even the brilliant teachers who seem to do nothing wrong.
- “Imagine breaking through the barrier of self-doubt and becoming the person you were born to be.” -Jamie Kern Lima
- “Anything that’s human is mentionable, and anything that is mentionable can be more manageable. When we can talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary.” –Fred Rogers
- ”Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind. ” -Dr. Seuss
- “Your faith can move mountains and your doubt can create them.” -Anonymous
- “There is hope, even when your brain tells you there isn’t.” -John Green
- “The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves but wiser people are so full of doubts.” -Bertrand Russell
- “Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action.” -William James
- “Doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother.” -Khalil Gibran
- “I love it when people doubt me. It makes me work harder to prove them wrong.” -Derek Jeter
- “Successful people have fear, successful people have doubts, and successful people have worries. They just don’t let these feelings stop them.” -T. Harv Eker
- “Doubting yourself is normal. Letting it stop you is a choice.” -Mel Robbins
- “The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” -Sylvia Plath
- “Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.” -Suzy Kassem
- “Don’t let them make you doubt yourself. All the greatest visionaries in history have been told they were insane at some point.” -Michele Jaffe
- “Aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn’t be able to fly, but the bumblebee doesn’t know that so it goes on flying anyway.” -Mary Kay Ash
- “Don’t let the fear of striking out hold you back.” -Babe Ruth
- “If you don’t have some self-doubts and fears when you pursue a dream, then you haven’t dreamed big enough.” -Joe Vitale
Pushing Through The Tough Times Quotes
The important thing to remember is that the difficult times are temporary. Your greatest lesson to show your students is your resilience.
The struggles you are going through will make you a better teacher in the end, one who is more skilled in the art of teaching.
- “Sometimes when you’re in a dark place you think you’ve been buried, but you’ve actually been planted.” -Christine Caine
- “You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” -Jon Kabat-Zinn
- “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” –Winston Churchill
- “Fall seven times, stand up eight.” -Japanese Proverb
- “I am not afraid of storms for I am learning how to sail my ship.” –Amy March, from Little Women
- “Your present circumstances don’t determine where you go; they merely determine where you start.” –Nido Qubein
- “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.” -Fredrick Douglass
- “Failure is instructive. The person who really thinks learns quite as much from his failures as from his successes.” –John Dewey
- “Life is like a piano; the white keys represent happiness and the black show sadness. But as you go through life’s journey, remember that the black keys also create music.” –Ehssan
- “I have not failed, I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” -Thomas Edison
- “The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” –Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
- “Giving up is for rookies.” -Philoctetes
- “When it is dark enough, you can see the stars.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
- “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” -Nelson Mandela
- “Life isn’t finding shelter in the storm. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.” -Sherrilyn Kenyon
- “When a defining moment comes along, you can do one of two things. Define the moment, or let the moment define you.” -Roy McAvoy
- “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” -Confucious
- “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” -Albert Einstein
Hopefully you’ve enjoyed these inspirational self care quotes for teachers and found something that can help you this year. There’s a reason motivational quotes are so popular: it’s a great way to start a lesson or to give you the positive affirmations you need to keep going.
We’d love to hear from you, if you’d like to share any of your favorite inspirational quotes, please visit our Facebook page and share.
Also, we encourage you to share this free resource, and others on our educator wellness page, with others that are looking for some motivation to start a self-care action plan. After all, MTI has always been about teachers helping teachers. And part of that is to continue your teacher education outside of your bachelor’s and master’s degree.