As part of so-called ‘Self Care September’ (say that five times fast) Tender is running a week-long series of sessions for internal staff surrounding mental health awareness and self-care. We invite you to join in and follow our escapades over on social media – we’ll be thoroughly documenting what we’re doing on Twitter and here on our blog!
Mental health and ‘self-care’ have become buzzwords recently so why have Tender decided to incorporate this into their day to day office running? The answer is not simply because we fancy doing a bit of yoga (although we will be doing that!)
Tender specialises in preventing unhealthy relationships and we love what we do but like all jobs it can get stressful and at times a bit upsetting when we’re looking at the statistics all day long. So we’re setting ourselves up a self-care week to make sure that we’re all looking after each other and most importantly ourselves. This gives our staff the opportunity to start looking at self-care as poor mental health prevention in the same way we run abuse prevention.
Throughout the week we’ll be running self-care and wellness exercises, see below for a few examples. Feel free to join in with us or set up your own self-care week at your work!
Wellness Action Plans
We’re incorporating Mind’s Wellness Action Plans into all the teams to help people to discuss mental health and wellness with their managers. These plans help people identify their warning signs and triggers for stress which can then lead to poor mental health and they’re a good way to help the team actively discuss their wellbeing. Alongside this we’re running a Manager Appreciation Scheme where people can give feedback to their managers who often get overlooked in 1to1s – managers need some appreciation too!
Throughout the week, the team will be given secret ‘Guardian Angels’ who will look out for them throughout the week and offer a bit of extra support and an ear to listen when they need. This will be quite tricky to work out who is whose Angel as the team is already very supportive!
Our resident Wellness expert Whole School Approach Manager Leah will be running a mindful eating session to help us all pay attention to what and how we’re eating. All it takes is a minute to sit down and properly think about the food we’re choosing to eat and what it’s going to give us for the rest of the day.
We’ll also be establishing a ‘Praise Box’ for each member of staff – throughout the week we’ll be popping in little notes praising team members for good work. Sometimes we forget all the little achievements we have in a week and this is a nice, simple way to keep track of them – plus it helps everyone else be present in the office and pay attention to what everyone else is up to!
It’s no secret that our office is a big fan of plants – did you know that plants in an office can improve productivity by 15%? And in true Tender office form we’re going to be taking a break to do some repotting and get grounded with the earth.
On one of the days we’ll be asking the staff to all come in in clothing that makes them happy – you know that feeling when you’re wearing an outfit that just makes you feel great? That’s how we want everyone to feel all day. Sometimes self-care can be something as simple and materialistic as putting on your favourite jeans.
Our resident trainee yoga teacher (Youth Engagement Manager Lucy) will be teaching us all some desk yoga – how do you look after yourself when you’re sitting down all day and you don’t feel like you’ve got the time to move? As a theatre charity we’re no strangers to leaping around the place but we still have days where we feel like we don’t have the time and this’ll be a nice way to give us some tools to look after ourselves in the busy periods.
The wonderful charity Blurt who work to increase awareness and understanding on depression have set up a campaign to help people talk about mental health and wellbeing in the workplace. Our rather nervous National Partnerships & Office Coordinator Ruth will be taking the lead with their help and will be running their Peer-Led Mental Health Session in the office.
Following on from this week in the run up to Mental Health Awareness day on October 10th, Tender’s Youth Board will be promoting their new self-care campaign.