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30th January 2015

Time to Talk again

Time to Talk againTime to talk day is here again. This is a national campaign for one day each February where people are encouraged to have a conversation about mental health . The idea is that the more we talk about mental health, the less it becomes a taboo subject, and encourages people to seek help. Time to Talk day 2015 is Thursday 5th February, and as many people as possible are asked to talk about mental health for just 5 minutes.

Support at work

There are plenty of ideas on the Time To Talk website of what to talk about and how to initiate a conversation but one that struck me was the issue of promoting well-being amongst workers. Working in health and social care can be stressful, and places a lot of emotional strain on people. How do we protect ourselves and our own mental health? One of the Time to Talk themes is about mental health in the workplace, so here are some topics you might be able to talk about in your workplace, in a staff meeting, in one-to-one supervision, or whilst you’re making a cup of tea.

Ideas for conversations

  • First of all making sure you are getting supervision, either on an individual or group basis. If you haven’t got anywhere to seek support in your work, and get guidance, bottling up difficult issues at work can start to have an impact on you and your family.
  • Trying to ensure work, and thinking about work, isn’t consuming all your waking hours, or your sleeping hours. Getting plenty of recreation (re-creating yourself!) such as exercise, reading, just doing something different, that is stimulating your mind and body, can help promote well-being.
  • Thinking about how to support other colleagues. Ideally we want to build a team where staff feel able to talk about difficult problems at work as a way of sharing ideas and getting solutions from others, rather than one in which expressing anxieties about work is seen as a weakness or a nuisance. There’s been some innovative work done in hospitals using a model of discussion called the Schwartz Centre rounds, based on an American idea. Staff working in emotionally stressful settings meet once month for an hour over lunchtime to talk about the impact on themselves of their work with some impressive results.

You find a lot more information on Time to Talk day here.

*All information is correct at the time of publishing

Topics: Mental Health

David Beckingham

Mental Health Specialist

David Beckingham is a self-employed independent trainer, and is also an honorary lecturer with the University of Cumbria. His professional background is as a social worker and he has worked in care homes for older people in Cumbria. David’s main area of expertise is in mental health. Prior to becoming self-employed he was a Staff Development and Training Officer with Cumbria County Council, both commissioning and delivering training to mental health workers and others in statutory and independent sector organisations. Read more

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