20 May 2020
10 Tips to support business owners and leaders to stay well and build resilience
During these turbulent and uncertain times of COVID-19, putting your own oxygen mask on first is more important than ever. While moving into level 2 and back to work has removed some uncertainly, it also brings a new set of challenges for business owners and their teams as they adjust to ‘the new normal’. For some, it may bring up new fears and areas of concern, while others will be delighted to be back to work and out in the community. Everyone will be reacting and going through these times differently.
The word resilience has become one of the latest buzzwords but what does it really mean in the workplace context?
One myth buster – it is not about simply ‘toughening up’ or ‘working harder’. Resilience is a lifelong journey and is neither a static state nor fixed trait but something we can learn that helps us prepare for life’s inevitable setbacks. The neuroscience tells us the adult brain is plastic and we can rewire it to cultivate resilience. It also tells us the more tools we have in our wellbeing tool kit, the more likely we are to find the right approach for the presenting situation.
Maintaining a culture of self-care, mastering stress, staying healthy and building our personal networks (AKA our support crew) are all important aspects of resilience. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Plan your day/week and have a routine: Each morning plan your day and schedule in time for the important things like exercise, time for yourself and a positive mindset. Focus on what you can control
- Maintain healthy eating that’s right for you: Enjoy high vibe foods (include loads of colourful fruit and veg) to support your immune system and avoid the liver loaders – limiting sugar, alcohol, caffeine, trans fats and processed foods
- Exercise in a way that is right for you and brings you joy: There is no point joining a gym if you despise it. Exercise snacks are great throughout the day, maybe a short break down to the sea front, take in the sea air and watch the waves roll into the shore. Change up your energy
- Sleep well: 7 – 8 hours are important for a calm clear mind and good decision making. It is also the time when our body enters ‘Rest and Repair’ mode and is essential for our immune system
- Limit media: Do not get drawn down the dark hole – limit your time on social media and make sure you are off screens at least an hour before bedtime
- Be aware of thinking traps: These include black and white thinking, catastrophising, fortune telling, ruminating and more. Be aware of your thoughts and challenge them, aim for a balance in your thoughts
- Mindful breathing: Become aware of your breathing. Pause and take a long, slow breath in right down to your belly to the count of five, hold for several seconds, then exhale through your mouth for five. Repeat several times. This will take you out of fight, flight or freeze mode and into rest and recovery
- Write it out: Get your thoughts out of your head and down on paper. An end of the day download so your mind can relax and not worry that you will forget things as you hit the pillow, or early morning journaling, find a practice that works for you
- Gratitude: Write or share three things each day you are grateful for. While this might seem airy fairy, the science has proven you cannot think the monkey chatter and practice gratitude at the same time. This can be a very simple but powerful exercise. Also, good to do if you are having trouble getting to sleep
- The power of 1:1 check ins with the team cannot be underestimated – have awareness and provide an early response to signs of overload/overwhelm
- How are you feeling today?
- Tell me – what has been going well for you today?
- What has been difficult or worrying for you today?
- How have you handled that?
- How can I best support you with this? or What can I do that would be helpful?
Questions like these are demonstrating your support and empowering your team member to be creative and find their own answers, which will help them build their resilience.
Remember to ask yourself these questions too along with What can I do to ensue I stay on track today?
And accept that tomorrow it maybe a different answer to that question.
Most importantly, do reach out for support. To your networks, your support crew, or the 800 support numbers that are available.
Robin Wilson is a Wellness Specialist who has a strong drive and passion to help people to live well, work well and stay well
For further information, contact Robin:
027 777 9019