As Richard Branson says, ‘Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don't want to. If you look after your staff, they'll look after your customers. It's that simple.’
So what is Wellbeing? Wikipedia defines it very simply as follows: “The state of being comfortable, healthy or happy.” I believe that we all wish for a high level of wellbeing for ourselves and for those around us. And it shouldn’t be that difficult to achieve, in theory, yet it does seem to be difficult at times, especially in teaching where you are often subjected to constant demands all day long.
Wellbeing is closely linked with self-care – and this is what a lot of teachers (and nurses, doctors, carers, anyone who is giving of themselves for many hours each day) find difficult to do. One of the main reasons this is so, is a lack of time.
Teachers and other school staff are in constant contact with many other people for almost all of their waking hours. They are at the mercy of demands from several different angles all at the same time. This can be exhausting and creates a sense of high alert as to where the next demand may be coming from. This way of living needs to be balanced out by also being on the receiving end of support and care. We cannot keep giving successfully, without receiving.
Teachers are so stretched with all the things that MUST be done and self-care seems like an optional activity, which can be left out, in favour of completing all the must-do tasks. The truth is, time for self-care doesn’t just happen; we have to make time for it.
Here are 5 easy to implement ways to start developing a Wellbeing Culture in your School:
Staff and students benefit from a strong Wellbeing Culture. When we experience a high level of wellbeing, we generally feel well, content, motivated and fulfilled. We will achieve, adapt and create much more easily and we will feel so much better. Thus those who we then connect with and teach throughout the day will also feel more content and so progress further.
Wellbeing cannot be a 'tick box' exercise; it does need to be continuously addressed. To this end in some schools have appointed members of staff to take care of this. Others use external support.
If you would like to discuss staff wellbeing further, do contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org or 07783 107 236. You can also contact me via my Portal Consultancy page.
I also provide a range of bite-size resources that are highly effective, supportive and easy to use. They are available online so that affordable support is always available.
A great Wellbeing Culture is a basic requirement and when successfully in place, everyone will flourish.