Corporate Wellbeing Specialist

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Read our blog for news, views and more on wellbeing at work and home.

Workplace stress – fight or flight?

One of the benefits of being in the modern world is that on an average day is there is no need outrun an animal planning to eat us for dinner. Yet our bodies have retained a stress response mechanism called the fight or flight response, which is a physiological reaction that occurs in response to a perceived harmful event, attack, or threat to survival. The trouble is the stress we are often responding to today is not the type of stress we can literally run from, so we get stressed and stay that way. Workplace stress is an example of this in action, with office workers who are often already facing the negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle having elevated stress levels from work related issues. The problem of workplace stress is...

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Depression, and how exercise helps

Most of us experience being ‘down’ at some point in our lives. In fact 17.9% of women and 10.4% of men have been diagnosed with depression at some time in their lives. And although we know it’s common, experiencing depression can be a lonely business, especially when you feel the pressure to put on a brave face, and often those around you don’t even know what’s going on. While a quick fix for depression would be great, the reality is that for many it is something that has to be managed, often for extended periods. For many of those with family and professional commitments, taking to bed to recover like you do when you have a bad cold is not an option (though very tempting some days)...

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Understanding personality measures: part two

Last time we discussed some of the general frameworks and models of personality. In this article we'll look at what underpins personality. [caption id="attachment_269" align="alignright" width="300"] Your personality is partly traits, and partly your individual experience of the world © Bluelela | Dreamstime.com[/caption] My notes here on personality are largely based on the work of Dan McAdams, a leading personality psychologist and professor at Northwestern University in the USA. I have found his approach to be both a useful and practical way to explain the somewhat complex realm of personality, and self awareness in general.McAdams describes personality as being essentially made up of three parts – traits, characteristic adaptations and life stories. Let’s look at these in more detail. 1. Traits The trait approach to personality uses common themes to...

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You can’t make a good decision on an apple

Well, technically speaking you can make a good decision on an apple. If the apple follows a decent lunch, that is. [caption id="attachment_179" align="alignright" width="300"] An apple a day won't keep hunger at bay, and will make decision making harder to do.  © Johnlric | Dreamstime.com[/caption] As a leader it can be incredibly difficult to eat well at work. The 11:00am meetings go for twice as long as they should, and the 1:30pm meetings loom even before you have had a chance to reach your desk. Pulled from pillar to post, you might consider yourself lucky to have had a nutritious apple for lunch. This is especially true when the trusty vending machine in the staff communal area is quietly calling your name. The problem with not stopping for lunch,...

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Understanding personality measures: part one

The Center for Creative Leadership recently published a study that found that the number one career derailer of leaders, regardless of culture, is “lack of accurate portrait of self”. That is, a lack of self awareness. [caption id="attachment_188" align="alignright" width="300"] Different personality measures will seek to define your personality in different ways. What kind of bird are you? © Cinc212 | Dreamstime.com[/caption] Being unaware of behaviour and the impact it has on others is probably the number one thing that brings most people undone. Having a sense of self is hugely important for our own self esteem and for how we interact with others. There are lots of ways to gain a more accurate portrait of yourself, and personality measures are up there with being one of the...

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Self Care Cards: This year, give the gift that takes care. Dismiss