This week many firms have been observing Mental Health Awareness Week, engaging in activities and events designed to help us improve our wellbeing and reconnect through nature. Kilburn & Strode’s mental health first aid team got together and concepted a series of initiatives for each day of the week linked to one of the Mental Health UK’s “five ways to wellbeing,” so that we might maximise opportunities to inspire colleagues to get involved.
We kicked off the week with Take Notice and a nature photography competition. Running all week, we have been getting outdoors and capturing the beauty to be found in our environment. The contributions so far have been stunning, so it’s likely to be a tight vote for the winner next week.
Tuesday’s theme was Keep Learning. Colleagues had a go at “The Wim Hof Method”, which is all about active breathing techniques to improve cognitive function, reduce stress and improve overall wellbeing. The laughter that went alongside the practice was great for the same reasons too!
Connect involved a Zoom chat where participants made use of crafty activities to reflect on recent challenges overcome and positive new habits formed. Given that we have had so many new joiners while working remotely, we also shared contact info for all the informal clubs and groups that exist across our firm and help us keep work and play in balance.
Being active. A tough one, when for many of us even the commute used to be a welcome opportunity not to be sedentary, glued to our screens. Our team came up with recommendations for intro group classes run all over London, and showcased colleagues who have found creative ways to get outdoors during lockdown.
The final day had the theme of Give. We reflected on how we engage with our communities, and the sense of wellbeing that that doing so can afford us. Everyone was invited to take 15 minutes to write a letter to a stranger who might have been lonely, isolated and depressed during lockdown. We also ran a poll to find out how many people have a plan for utilizing their CSR day this year. For those who aren’t sure yet, we’ll get together and come up with something meaningful and great fun too.
The events we ran for Mental Health Awareness Week were, of course, designed to get people thinking about mental health, and taking action to bolster their wellbeing. But that isn’t a one-week task. Developing a foundation of good mental health, and sustaining it, is a life-long journey, and at Kilburn & Strode we keep wellbeing high up the agenda.
We want all our colleagues to feel assured they are not alone on that path.