Download your Wellbeing

June 2012     Excellent research  into 22 European nations accounts of wellbeing is on  NEF (New Economics Foundation, UK) website.

NEF is a UK charity promoting global
interdependence, thriving communities, wellbeing & future economy for policy-makers, governments & organisations.

NEF is an independent think-and-do tank that inspires and demonstrates real economic well-being. We aim to improve quality of life by promoting innovative solutions that challenge mainstream thinking on economic, environmental and social issues. We work in partnership and put people and the planet first.”

Professor Lord Richard Layard, November 2008

NEF used 2  components in their comprehensive research of wellbeing personal & social wellbeing.  Denmark was top scorer for personal & social wellbeing.   I wonder how NZ would shape up in comparison.

more on Sub-components of Personal Well-being

Trust your workmates & managers? Open to new worlds

Trust is a very special commodity.

Yet we live in a world full of low-trust & suspicion. The emerging streams of newsfeed fill our waking lives with examples of discrepancies, dishonesty, ulterior motives, not- so-hidden agendas, personal gains, neglectful practice & backhanders which feeds us with low-trust.  So who can we trust? And how? I was always told that there’s no such thing as automatic trust, you have to earn it!

Getting savvy to our own psychological trusting makeup helps us to see through the mist & smokescreens of good relating with others. Personal relationships, romantic relationships, work relationships all demand a level of receptivity & scrutiny from our trust monitor. Our radar of previous hurts, childhood wounds, experiences of having our trust broken is on the look- out for indicators & first whiff of something fishy, our self-preservation armour clunks into place. We are full of so many downloaded mis-trust messages in our psychological inner world – “don’t talk to strangers”, “be careful, the world is not a safe place”,  “ people are only nice to you because they want something”

Compassion Fatigue – An occupational hazzard?

March 2012

Have you lost your joie de vive? Do you find yourself getting drained listening to others’ crisis &
personal issues? Yes I know sometimes life is tough & we have our own issues to deal with too!   As a line manager do you find your internal empathy is running a bit dry? Are you sufficiently emotionally robust to handle co-workers’ grief, traumas, life-dramas, over-sensitivities, anger outbursts etc?  Maybe you are suffering from compassion fatigue otherwise known as ‘vicarious traumatisation‘.

Here’s a handy fact sheet on compassion fatigue 

Is work making us mentally ill ?

February 2012

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure, It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us most.  As you let your light shine, you unconsciously give others permission to do the same, Liberated from your fear, your presence liberates others.  Nelson Mandela’s inaugural speech 1994

Looking at our emotional health at work, I was intrigued by a recent UK study by Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD)

on supporting mental health in the workplace.  In 2011, they commissioned YouGov to survey over 2000 employees to identify their experiences & attitudes about the degree of mental health at work. 26% reported mental health difficulties, with women higher than men. Rates were also higher in the 35 to 44 year age group.

CIPD also cite the CAUSES of mental health problems

Bridging the gap between Wellbeing and Distress

For my beachside holiday reading over Christmas & New Year I enjoyed perusing Dr Russ Harris’ new book The Reality Slap – How to find fulfillment when life hurts (see www.actmindfully.com.au) which looks at how events in life such as crisis & disasters shock us, causing a huge slap in our reality awareness, especially events like death, divorce, bankruptcy, redundancy, disability, serious illness or injury.

The recent earthquake & aftershocks in Christchurch is a prime example, following on from the previous shakes. These life events can affect us to such a degree that the gap between what is happening/happened & what we desire or need in order to feel OK looks like a huge gulf. Even Christmas & New Year experiences of family dramas or existential aloneness can trigger so much distress in us, that we find it hard to engage with everyday life. In these troubled times, Russ’s book helps us to develop self-compassion. He uses ACT (acceptance & commitment therapy) – ACT mindfulness  to deal with these major losses.
I was then reflecting on how exactly do we manage this reality slap.
How can we bridge the gap between feeling normally OK with inner WELLBEING & dealing with the distress of having our world turned upside down?
The 2 worlds can seem to be universes apart.

Here are 7 ways to bridge the gap

Developing Inner Super-Vision at Work

 

Have you ever wondered why it is that some work interactions and events can trigger big emotional responses such as over-reactions, misunderstandings, injustices, defensiveness or emotional shut down, retaliations?

From my client work through EAP schemes over the years I am amazed at the amount of bullying that exists in organisations – hierarchical, horizontal, group peer pressure & so on. I wonder why it is becoming so common place when we all have  the right to a nurturing and supportive organisational culture instead of one which is harmful & anxious.

I found December’s HRINZ meeting with Laura Crawshaw, Boss Whispering Institute – Intervening With Abrasive Leaders, very interesting in its perspective of providing group feedback to the ‘bully’ focused on interpersonal behaviour that causes emotional distress in coworkers sufficient to disrupt the organisational functioning, without the need for formal investigations & defences. see http://www.bosswhispering.com/

For coworkers who find themselves in a difficult relationship environment or victim mode, there is a better way to be – develop the inner super-visor.