Looking after yourself and your team
In the last couple of years, we have learned about living in an uncertain world and in an environment that has limited the amount of control that we have over our day to day lives. It has also made us re-evaluate how we work and what we want our future to look like.
As we enter the third year of the pandemic, for many of us our tanks are starting to feel pretty empty. Those in leadership roles who are constantly looking after and showing concern for their team members wellbeing, may be noticing this especially.
Is it time to check in on how you are doing?
Your roles are busy and complex, and constant change and uncertainty can start to wear down even the most resilient among us.
Here are some strategies to help boost your wellbeing:
- Connect with your friends and family
- Spend time in nature – we’re lucky in New Zealand, for most of us a bush or beach walk isn’t far away
- Smile – infectious in a good way
- Laugh – a really good laugh is restoring
- Manage your screen time – information overload isn’t always a good thing
- Make time to do the things you enjoy
- Show gratitude – despite everything in most cases we have a lot to be grateful for
- Maintain a daily routine, enough sleep, healthy eating, and exercise
If you feel that you aren’t doing so well or are feeling overwhelmed, acknowledge your feelings and talk with someone you trust, or seek advice from your GP.
To look after your team spirit, the management team should consider the following:
- Show your appreciation – do it often and make it sincere.
- Acknowledge how difficult the current times are.
- At team meetings – spend a few minutes at the start of the meeting highlighting the five most positive things that have happened since the previous meeting.
- When there is a problem look at where your systems have lacked rather than apportioning blame to an individual staff member.
- Ask your staff “How are you doing?” If this is done when times are good, hopefully your staff will feel comfortable to verbalise their feelings when things aren’t going so well.
- If a staff member isn’t happy about their progress in a certain area remind them how much they have achieved.
- Ensure that your staff know what you expect of them. Provide clear position descriptions with expected outcomes, give them achievable goals and make sure they have the resources required to attain them.
- Challenge – people like to do new things and explore their potential, this may at times put them out of their comfort zone but with adequate support and coaching you can help them reach their potential and fulfil their ambitions.
- Listen to your staff – create good open relationships, listen to what they say and together come up with solutions.
- Breaks and holidays – we all need time to charge our batteries and time away from work enables us to do this. Encourage your staff to plan holidays at a mutually convenient time.
If you recognise that one of your staff members might be struggling with their mental health, don’t be afraid to ask them if they are okay, but before taking this step make sure you have time to have the conversation and that you are in place where they can talk freely and confidentially.
If you would like to read more information about managing mental health in the workplace, we have content on HealthyPractice, log on first
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