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  • Amber Cowburn

Time To Talk Day 2021: 10 ways to check-in with your staff

Today is #TimetoTalkDay 2021! It is a great reminder of the power of talking about mental health, and particularly checking in with each other in the workplace.

We fully encourage this at Working Well - today and everyday!

And whilst this year it might be a little different as we are in lockdown, and a lot of us are working remotely... we thought we would share some top tips for a remote Time to Talk Day with your colleagues:

  1. Schedule a video call coffee morning & catch up with your team, encourage everyone to bring a hot drink and something yummy to eat! You don't need to talk about work, instead have a more general pastoral chat

  2. Use the video call to all share one thing that has helped your mental health during lockdown - sharing ideas is inspiring & shows we are all in this together

  3. Send out an email highlighting some good mental health resources: this could be podcast suggestions, yoga workouts on YouTube, and crucially some helplines where your colleagues can seek support

  4. Encourage EVERYONE to save the Shout Crisis Textline number in their phone: 85258 which is available 24/7

  5. Pop a postcard or card in the post to somebody checking in with them - this could be a lovely gesture for a friend or family member. You could also use this to recognise good performance in your work team!

  6. If you are keyworkers and are at work, grab some biscuits and pop them in the staffroom - encourage employees to take a break for a hot drink and a treat, and to check in with each other!

  7. If you have more time, you could also leave positive post-it notes, or conversation starters about mental health such as: "What has helped lift your spirits recently?" or "Who can you talk to when you are feeling down?"

  8. Ask how somebody is, and then ask again. Often we get the automatic "I'm fine" reaction, but if we ask again, we show the person we *really* want to know how they are.

  9. Use alternatives to 'how are you' if the conversation isn't going anywhere... 'how has your week been?', 'do you feel optimistic about work at the moment?', or 'what is stressing you out the most?' are all good options

  10. Remember that listening to somebody is a really valuable thing and can be so useful for a person to just download and vent. You don't have to have any answers or 'fix things', just put aside some time and really listen to their answer, acknowledging that things are tough for them right now.

Let us know any other ways you will be connecting and reaching out on #TimeToTalkDay - we would love to hear!


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