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Bringing teams together

Learning from best practice by NHS and public sector colleagues around the UK, we’ve summarised some ideas you could bring into your own teams. Whether that’s to keep remote colleagues connected socially or if you want to build some wellbeing resilience into your working week.

Ideas to bring teams together
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Easy to run’ virtual pause space

In these challenging times, we know that the pressure on individuals and teams has the potential to mount, so finding space to re-set, re-charge and re-commit is crucial in encouraging people to leave the pressures of work behind, as they re-connect with family and friends at the end of a shift. We know that the pressures are not just felt by clinical or ‘frontline’ staff and we encourage you to offer this to others too.  
Read the NHS guide to setting up a pause space

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Managers mental health conversation training

Identify people in your team or community who may be struggling with their mental health, initiate a supportive wellbeing conversation, confidently hold the conversation using active listening skills, and signpost them to appropriate support with REACT MH conversation training. The next regular free 1 hour 15 minute session takes place on 16 November. Book here

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Buddy scheme

Why not set up a buddy or mentor scheme within your team, particularly for new starters? Buddies can be a friendly ear, offering advice on how to get things done, sort out problems and generally get used to life and work at the Trust.
Having a buddy gives you a chance to talk freely with another member of staff. Everything you say to them is absolutely confidential: nothing gets written down and nothing gets said to anyone else.

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Socially distanced outdoor challenge

Find an outoor challenge you can work towards together. For example, can your team collectively travel the distance between Land's End to John O'Groats (603miles) by Christmas Eve? You could sign up for challenges through Strava or find a charity challenge online.

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Online coffee morning or ‘Virtual Cwtch’

Taking inspiration from Monmouthshire County Council’s Microsoft Teams Livestream sessions which discuss a range of topics including mental health and wellbeing, mindfulness and the importance of taking a break, why not theme your own online team session?
About the virtual cwtch

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Weekly wellbeing sessions

From yoga to mindfulness, NHS staff currently benefit from free access to numerous platforms. Why not connect digitally and hold each other accountable to getting active at a set time each week?  
Movement for Modern Life is a British online yoga platform and NHS staff are given free access to a range of resources, including breathwork sessions; stress reduction classes which can be done in your home or in the workplace; a selection of energising morning classes and evening classes that aim to help you wind down or recharge.
Get NHS access

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Virtual book club

Though we can’t travel at the moment, books give us the opportunity to venture beyond our front doors. Some book clubs have moved online with the Quarantine Book Club in the US and Salon London in the UK running virtual book clubs. Sign up or set up your own.
Read BBC advice on setting up your own book club.

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Flex around daylight hours

For those working remotely, can your colleagues reasonably flex their day to allow time to get outside during daylight hours?
As we enter Lockdown 2.0, maybe it’s finally time to take on the ‘Couch to 5K’ challenge, not forgetting that regular exercise has been proven to help reduce the risk of chronic illnesses such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and stroke! In addition, research shows that physical activity can also boost self-esteem, energy, mood and sleep quality.


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