Spark Your Resilience And Wellness

 

A practical guide to support your career development and well-being

 

Well-being starts at home, the workplace, and within our community. More than ever in these precarious times and ever-changing world of work, we need to take care of ourselves and others: family, friends, employees and colleagues. This article discusses the key challenges currently faced in the health and social care sector within the UK that impact workers’ health. It offers five powerful resilience strategies to support wellness and enable career development possibilities for the individual. In the Benatti Resiliency Model®, designed by renowned leadership and executive coach, author, and trainer Beth Kennedy, she provides practical advice to enable you turn chaos into calm, threat into opportunity, and spark your ‘resilience muscle’ to thrive in less-than-ideal circumstances.

Challenges faced by health and social care workers

One of the key challenges currently facing health and social care workers is an ageing and growing population. The Nuffield Trust estimates that the ageing and growing population alone could mean we need another 17,000 hospital beds by 2022 and doesn’t include the human resources necessary in the care of the elderly. Simply put, the number of health and social care staff, equipment, and other resources will need to rise in order to meet demand. Evolving healthcare needs in the areas of obesity, diabetes, and dementia, as well as the rise in antibiotic resistance, mean that medical advancement is crucial in saving lives. However, progress in medical technology needs resourcing and involves the training and retraining of staff. Closure of local services due to centralisation increases reliance on privatized services and out-sourcing. This has the effect of leaving many who require care not receiving it on time, the rise of waiting lists, and the like. All these challenges have a direct impact on workers’ mental and physical health.

The Benatti Resiliency Model® - Five strategies to build your well-being and career resilience.


Beth Kennedy’s Benatti Resiliency Model® offers five powerful strategies: Well-being, Self-awareness, Brand, Connection, and Innovation to boost resilience, prevent burnout, and manage career obstacles and transition, giving you a career advantage. Let’s explore how you can maximize this resilience model to support your career wellness.

 


Strategy 1. Recognise that well-being is mental, physical, and spiritual.


According to ‘What Works Well-being’ (an independent collaborating centre that develops and shares robust and accessible well-being evidence) well-being is described as “how we’re doing’ as individuals, communities and as a nation, and how sustainable that is for the future. It is sometimes referred to as social welfare or social value”. Thus, wellness has many dimensions and facets, such as an individual’s working conditions, the relationship of these to our personal well-being, as well as our relationships, health, what we do, where we live, the health of our personal finances, the overall state of the economy, the domain of education, and the acquisition of skills and governance.


Personal well-being is a particularly important dimension. It is the area we are most concerned with in an everyday sense. It relates to ‘’how satisfied we are in our lives, our sense that what we do in life is worthwhile (including our work), our day-to-day emotional experiences (happiness and anxiety) and our wider mental wellbeing “. Physical exercise is an obvious way to support well-being. Meditation is becoming increasingly popular as more and more people discover its wide-ranging benefits. Modern science has recently discovered links between meditation and physical and mental well-being. To read further about some of the benefits of meditation click here.

Strategy 2. Self-Awareness: The value of knowing your purpose and adjusting your mindset.


Decide what your purpose is within your workplace and your current role. Ask how you can understand your position, and what you are required/asked to do. Explore how you could be of service in a way that utilizes your strengths. Play to these strengths and know your personality type to enhance how you work. Seek out your HR representative and enquire what personality quizzes and assessments are available to support skills development and self-awareness. The most well-known assessment tool is the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) a trusted personality assessment designed to create more successful careers. You can check out a number of useful personality quizzes online here.


Looking after the self is critical. It is therefore vital to understand oneself. Working in the busy, pressurised, and challenging environment of social and medical care means that professionals may not have the time to engage in such practices. Nonetheless, building and sustaining a positive outlook is extremely important. Start by deciding to have a positive or growth mindset. Explore integrating healthy habits both at home and work. Here are a few guidance tips to developing a

 

Growth Mindset.


The use of behaviour changing techniques can support and encourage healthy behavior and a positive outlook. You can find out more about behaviour change techniques from the NHS behavioral insights team and in the communications guide or explore behaviour change techniques with the behavioural insights team within your organization.


Strategy 3. Personal Branding: Discover, develop, and communicate your brand.


Identify your brand assets and impact by focusing on how your strengths and skill set can add value in your career and with the organisation. Here are a few incisive questions to kick start the process:


  1. How can your unique gifts (strengths and skills) best be used to support your organisation?

  2. Can you reach out for support to your line manager in performance review sessions to help you identify your skills and strengths by undertaking a skills assessment or review.

  3. What’s the possibility of finding a new secondment/project to demonstrate or build new skills? 

  4. Could you be a ‘work champion’ in an area that you are passionate about?


Try putting your hand up for new and interesting work that complements your skills or suggest ways in which you can support and address the organisation’s needs, enhancing its value and your career satisfaction.


  • Educate and upskill - make self-management interventions accessible. You can find out more via NHS  line managers web pages here.

  • Alternatively, decide to invest in your own wellness learning, or become a well-being champion. ‘Embrace Resilience’ a social enterprise with a mission to improve mental health, resilience and wellbeing in the workplace, across education and in the community delivered well-being courses. Why not undertake a wellness course to develop skills, self-educate, and use the learning to help yourself and others? Start by exploring here.


Strategy 4. Connection:  Cultivate relationships


Self-manage your wellbeing by harnessing the power of community. Try manifesting professional and social connections. Check out your community of support services and local public health amenities in the area such as leisure centers. Why not make the most of the expertise in your organisation, such as physiotherapist services or mental health support? Connect with and link in to other local NHS trusts to make the most of resources.  


  • Explore professional connections

Why not connect with peers in and outside of your organization—this can support idea sharing and new friendships. According to Mental Health Organization UK, “The benefits of Peer Support are wide ranging for those receiving the support, peer-support workers themselves, and for the mental health system. One of the key benefits of Peer Support is the greater perceived empathy and respect that peer supporters are seen to have for the individuals they support.” Find a tribe of people that you feel naturally and professionally connected to. Use the power of social media, online societies, and professional work websites such as LinkedIn to build relationships, share ideas, develop knowledge and make new friends.

 

  • Be involved in community activities

Active participation in the community can increase your skills economy. Activities can also help you connect to and with others and build trust and self-confidence. Volunteering has an impact on physical and mental health; develops identity and purpose; and supports experiential learning, skills development, and a healthy growth mindset. Join a group that you are passionate about. Get creative by trying out the creative industries—consider music or arts and crafts activities.


Strategy 5. Innovate by challenging yourself.


Innovation is about challenging yourself and can include how you reframe your perspective 

at work. Surround yourself with inspiration. Find a buddy/confidant. Pick a colleague you feel comfortable with and make yourselves accountable to each other. Support each other to keep trying new things and start with a small project. Not only do these types of innovations happen quickly; they also demonstrate success, interest, and attention to your team and organisation. Take a look at these tips on how you can innovate in work.


Try the Friday 5 challenge. Take five minutes every Friday to answer these three simple yet powerful questions.

 

  1.  What were my resiliency wins this week?
  2.  What is my resiliency goal for next week?
  3.  What is my plan to achieve that goal?


References


www.nuffieldtrust.org.uk


whatworkswellbeing.org/


Mineworks’ - https://mindworks.org/blog/physical-mental-benefits-of-meditation/


https://bethkennedy.com/


www.innerdrive.co.uk/how-to-develop-a-growth-mindset/


www.learning-mind.com/personality-assessment-tests/


www.psychologytoday.com/us


https://embraceresilience.com/library-accredited-learning-modules/


www.nhsemployers.org/


www.mind.org.uk/information-support/tips-for-everyday-living/wellbeing/wellbeing/


www.cipd.co.uk/knowledge/culture/well-being/factsheet


www.mentalhealth.org.uk/a-to-z/p/peer-support


www.themuse.com/advice/10-ways-you-can-innovate-at-work-every-single-dayno-matter-how-boring-your-job-title