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Boost your emotional wellbeing for better psychological health

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Your emotions count!

“If you experience a healthy dose of positivity and you can sustain it, it can also empower and energize you to deal with adversity in a more constructive way. In that sense, resilience and a positive outlook are highly intertwined. If we cultivate our ability to sustain positivity, we are simultaneously cultivating our ability to bounce back from negativity.”

-Pelin Kesebir ( Centre for Healthy minds)

Latest research from the centre of healthy minds run by Richard Davidson  builds on his fascinating book the emotional life of your brain. In the book he talks about the links between our emotions (our affect) and our wellbeing. Much of mainstream mindfulness focuses more towards the focus element of mindfulness and our ability to manage our attention. What  I love about Richie Davidson’s work is that it focuses on our emotions too and  importantly the study of what sustains psychological wellbeing rather than purely focusing on disorders and when things go wrong. 

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Mindtrip Monthly Reflections Newsletter

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mindtrip reflections of ideas, thoughts, hints and tips and book recommendations focused around building a flourishing work environment.

Fancy a side hustle?

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Thinking about earning some money on the side? Whatever your reason for taking out a side hustle, you are not alone! Burgeoning in the States and building here with the disruption caused by new technology enabled business models it might just be that that hobby of yours, that passion around wellbeing or your love of travel may in fact enable you to earn a bit of cash on the side. Generally the focus on a side hustle is to make some money out of doing something you love in addition to your current work or you may have come up with an idea or disruption all of your own to add a bit of variety to your life. The following article  gives you a little bit to think about.. Read more

What’s your upskilling strategy?

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If you look back over your career what have you noticed about the technological impact on how you do your job? What we have experienced over the last few decades is predicted to ramp exponentially and the new norm will be just in time learning, upskilling, flexibility and adaptability. For some of us this will hit our sweet spot for others it will create much anxiety and fear. This article is a deep dive into how organisations may go about upskilling their workforce to remain viable, productive and desirable to their staff and customers.

While focused on digital upskilling, wider thought needs to be given to how to parallel this with people’s comfort and abilities in the areas of dealing with change, resilience, creativity, and empathy/compassion. 

And finally, from a wellbeing, healthy organisation and society perspective much research has been done by Professor Richard Layard and colleagues on the huge personal costs to individuals of being made unemployed. 

Access the article here

Using a GPS mindset to navigate transitions and change

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Great article focused on how to help yourself to develop a change resilient mindset

G- adopt a growth mindset eg this may feel uncomfortable for a while but I will learn and grow through making this change

P- link the change or transition to something purposeful or has meaning to you eg by sticking this out it helps me to build the lifestyle I want to live, help others or wider Society 

S- Make it social or get support from others to help you navigate change eg work with a coach, a mentor or others that may have experienced or are going through similar changes

 

Help Students Navigate Life’s Transitions With a Mindset GPS

What is important to you?

July 26th, 2019

Heather Johnston

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Working as an executive coach and an organisational development consultant these questions come up again and again. What do we value? What does success look like? How come what I used to love I don’t anymore- what next? What type of success drives me and why…Where should we be as a business? Why? How can we stop falling out as a team? How can I raise staff wellbeing

In our lives and work we are driven innately by what we value and the social context of what is around us. We may also be being influenced by our bodies’ and minds’ automatic wiring, pushing us towards and away from things and people that we desire and avoid. We react, make decisions and lead our lives by these implicit rules and behaviours. This is us on automatic pilot– our own personal intelligence that helps and guides us through life, so that we don’t have to stop and think every second to appraise what might be best. 

It is a complex web and who you talk to will focus on a different element of that web- driven by what is important or makes sense to them. Very simply, social psychologists and behavioural scientists may tell you that actually you have little agency and that your behaviour is determined by the context that you work and live within- social comparison and a desire to belong within groups being at play. Other specialisms of psychology will focus perhaps more on the individual level, your own personality perhaps, or common themes among people seeking out life satisfaction. Philosophers will come again at another angle exploring how do we know what is important to us? Challenging us to think about what matters and what doesn’t and why. 

So I invite you to consider a couple of things:

You may in fact be being driven by your social context and not actually what makes you happy…do your really want that degree, get married, promotion etc For a challenging look at these social memes that may be guiding you I invite you to read Paul Dolan’s latest book and have a look at this MOOC

Have you stopped to consider what really matters to you? What are your personal indicators for a good life?  The fields of positive psychology  and wellbeing try and measure this area using indicators such as satisfaction with life and psychological wellbeing. Looking at your own personal balance between eudaimonia (flourishing/fulfilling our potential) or what is purposeful to us and what makes us feel happy in the moment -our own personal pleasure (with thanks to Paul Dolan).

For some of us that are in the lucky position to have moved beyond pure survival, pleasure may be our key driver for others success and a good life is more about realising our potential, learning, growing and challenging ourselves. What is your balance? To explore this further I invite you to start being your own personal investigator- noticing in the moment when you feel good and not so good- is it when your ‘think’ you ‘should’ feel good, perhaps having a go at this self test for a few days. If you are struggling with a lack or purpose or meaning have a go at the test above and reflect on what is really important to you in your life? What challenge, change, learning or area of growth would bring you more fulfilment and/or what contexts (hobbies, workplace, communities) would support and enable this?

Interested in exploring this further both individually or as an organisation? Drop me a line hello@mindtrip.co.uk 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The case for wellbeing in the workplace

July 18th, 2019

Heather Johnston

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More and more attention is beginning to be paid to wellbeing initiatives at work. Moving from just focusing on ad hoc events to looking at wellbeing as a strategic foundation to build a business up from. Taking key policies, processes and initiatives and putting them through a wellbeing lens.

Typically people then will ask what about ROI, productivity and economic and profitability impact. However I would advocate that as we move into the 2020s the imperative will and should be more around humanity and humane business practices. Building businesses that make a difference and don’t cause untold suffering to human lives.

So it is also good to see a new research report that also is beginning to build the economic case – particularly if you work in finance and retail.

It also shows a strong correlation between employee satisfaction, customer loyalty, productivity and profitability. What’s not to like?

Interested in undertaking a strategic wellbeing health check in your workplace? Do get in touch hello@mindtrip.co.uk 07801 246113

Interested in a an experienced peer support network?

July 15th, 2019

Heather Johnston

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Are you an organisational development specialist or an experienced coach or supervisor with a passion for focusing on building positive and healthy workplaces and personally nourishing careers? I’m looking to co-create a peer support network with people that would value an action learning set/virtual mentoring/ peer group supervision. Sound interesting? Read more

Books on creativity and curiosity

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Flow
by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's famous investigations of "optimal experience" have revealed that what makes an experience genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment ...
Mindfulness for Creativity
by Danny Penman
Work deadlines, to-do lists, family commitments, pressure to perform... Our frantic lives demand so much from us that we can often feel locked into a cycle of frustration, anxiety and stress, unable to tackle the tasks before us or see a way out ...
Wired to Create
by Dr Scott Barry Kaufman
Is it possible to make sense of something as elusive as creativity? Creativity works in mysterious ways, with inspiration often arising out of nowhere - and then failing to show up when we need it most! Combining the latest findings in ...
Creativity
by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Creativity is about capturing those moments that make life worth living. The author's objective is to offer an understanding of what leads to these moments, be it the excitement of the artist at the easel or the scientist in the lab, so that ...
Curious?
by Todd Kashdan, PhD
“Curious? is one of those rare books that can make you rethink how you see the world.” —Arianna Huffington “This is the perfect book to read when you are having second thoughts about challenging yourself to explore that next step in life ...

Books on strengths based development

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Flourish
by Martin E. P. Seligman
Explains the four pillars of well-being--meaning and purpose, positive emotions, relationships, and accomplishment--placing emphasis on meaning and purpose as the most important for achieving a life of fulfillment.
Authentic Happiness
by Martin Seligman
'A practical map for a flourishing life' (Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence) In this groundbreaking, heart-lifting and deeply useful book, Martin Seligman, internationally esteemed psychologist and the father of Positive Psychology ...
Flow
by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's famous investigations of "optimal experience" have revealed that what makes an experience genuinely satisfying is a state of consciousness called flow. During flow, people typically experience deep enjoyment ...
The Strengths Book
by Alex Linley
Realise your strengths and you'll be realising the best of you. Do you want to be confident, successful, and sustainably happy? Do you want to achieve your goals and enjoy beter realtionships? Leading strengths experts provide the evidence that ...
Average to A+
by Alex Linley
Who wants to be average? Nobody does, and yet few of us know our strengths clearly, or know how to make the most of them. Until now. Average to A+ is the seminal volume for identifying and maximising our strengths.. Written by an international ...

Books on mindfulness and compassion

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Mindfulness
by Williams Penman
MINDFULNESS reveals a set of simple yet powerful practices that can be incorporated into daily life to help break the cycle of unhappiness, stress, anxiety and mental exhaustion and promote genuine joie de vivre. It's the kind of happiness that ...
Lovingkindness
by Sharon Salzberg
Explains how the Buddhist path can help individuals discover the inner joy within themselves, and shares simple Buddhist teachings and suggestions for meditation.
The Little Mindfulness Workbook
by Gary Hennessy
A practical, jargon-free workbook for you to put mindfulness strategies into practice and improve your life. Explore the key principles of mindfulness to reduce stress and be more effective and efficient, generally improving your well-being.
Love 2.0
by Barbara L. Fredrickson, Ph.D.
We all know love matters, but in this groundbreaking book positive emotions expert Barbara Fredrickson shows us how much. Even more than happiness and optimism, love holds the key to improving our mental and physical health as well as lengthening ...
Buddha's Brain
by Rick Hanson
Jesus, Moses, Mohammed, Gandhi, and the Buddha all had brains built essentially like anyone else's, yet they were able to harness their thoughts and shape their patterns of thinking in ways that changed history. With new breakthroughs in modern ...
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