Workable Wellbeing 2: more ideas inspired by #SLTchat

My first ‘Workable Wellbeing’ post was inspired by the @SLTchat discussion on 6/9/15 and updated a month later to mark World Mental Health Day. You can read it here.

This latest post was inspired by the lively #SLTchat on wellbeing held on 2/5/16 hosted by @ottleyoconnor. Several ideas I included in the first post featured again. Considering timing throughout the school year was mentioned by @ictlinks, using mindfulness courses with staff was brought up by @chrisedwardsuk, and cake featured prominently once again, with @pickleholic tweeting about ‘treat Friday’ where staff sign up to share their bakes.

My contribution about giving ‘I liked this’ cards to colleagues visited during learning walks received a lot of interest. Many contributors pointed out that it’s the simple things that can make all the difference, including thank-yous. My mention of staff dressing up for ‘Back to the Future’ Day last October seemed to capture the imagination of many and @Ed_Tmprince commented on the Easter egg hunt she puts on for her colleagues. I was interested in the Danish concept of Hygge described by @Graham_IRISC – a blend of warmth/comfort/belonging and how certain individuals in an organisation seem to generate it. I must add it to my list of Positive Phrases for which there is no direct English translation.

I was also struck the tweet by @MagnaCartaHead about the role of partnership working, something I had not considered at all in my original post. I know that I and other school leaders in the Oxford East Partnership find it a useful support network. We regularly share good news and challenges, and specific work like the recent moderation of Year 2 and Year 6 writing was particularly useful to all who took part. We have had several conversations about the role of wellbeing on recruiting and retaining staff and we all include membership of this supportive partnership in our recruitment advertising.

#SLTchat is itself a kind of partnership and those 30 minutes each Sunday evening certainly improve my sense of wellbeing and set me up for the week ahead. 

I’ve written a few posts now on wellbeing and worlkload and I’m thinking of how I can draw all these together, perhaps as a post on how school leaders can model behaviour that values work-life balance – something mentioned by several contributors to the #SLTchat discussion. Any comments or suggestions you may have would be very helpful.