About the Course
As challenges increase in both work and homelives, as busyness becomes a badge of honour and as family and community structures breakdown, we can no longer take our wellbeing for granted. This is a program to help all individuals buffer and enrich their wellbeing: through developing skills, tools, and practices for flourishing. Organisations have a responsibility to support wellbeing through system-level interventions, through leadership action and through culture but for meaningful improvement in wellbeing, we must act at the individual level.
The program is not a mental health first aid or recovery program; it is not directed towards those with mental health issues. It is focussed towards human strength and it is about supporting and sustaining wellbeing and human flourishing for all of us. Through this focus, benefits accrue not only to the individuals but to the broader organisation through the cumulative effect of enhancing wellbeing and the cultural positive contagion of wellbeing skills, strategies and attitudes.
One final word about the Why: This is not a program directed at artificially creating happiness or forcing positivity (uber or toxic positivity takes us away from wellbeing). This program’s purpose is to help all participants find safety and connection with others and with themselves, to build skills in sitting with difficult emotions and to create more agility and choice in our emotional landscape. Focussing on wellbeing makes an incredible difference to culture; It puts the heart back into teams and enables us to bring our humanity to work. It reduces conflict, fosters inclusion and enables greater collaboration and productivity.
This course is contextualizable to your specific organisational environment and needs.
Course Delivery Options
Course is only offered via Online mode.
Key Course Content
The course is delivered in two modes:
Introduction to Wellbeing in the Workplace: 5 week (5 x 1.75 hr sessions) introductory course.
Capabilities and Attitudes for Thriving: Wellbeing in the Workplace: 10 week (5 x 2.5 hrs sessions) in-depth course.
Both the introductory and the in-depth mode utilise the same content structure, outlined below. The in-depth course provides greater opportunity for in-depth exploration, in-session experiential activities and facilitator support.
Session 1: Understanding my autonomic modes, my values and what gives me a sense of meaning
This is not necessarily about big epiphanies but rather clarifying intention.
Finding ways to show up (intentional and in alignment) and using this to move on from being stuck in the daily treadmill and daily habits.
Drawing on neuroscience and research findings about neurobiology to understand about ways our autonomic state impacts how we see the world and assess safety or threat. (Stephen Porgess’ Polyvagal theory)
Mindfulness as a tool towards wellbeing.
Session 2: Self- compassion, vulnerability, safety and connection, building on natural strengths
Self-compassion - Allowing ourselves to feel our emotions that we feel – showing up to our difficult emotions (Sawubonas) and not abiding by “display rules.” (Susan David’s work on Emotional Agility)
This means finding ways to be safely vulnerability and saying No to toxic positivity - Brave faces are not necessary here
Noticing and valuing my strengths
Positive-Negative Ratios in the way I communicate with myself
Session 3: Valuing and working effectively with my emotions; emotional agility
Emotions as important data (not bad or good): they as signposts to pay attention to.
Noticing, naming, savouring and building positive emotions (Barbara Fredrickson’s Broaden and Build theory)
Being able to name emotions with granularity. Naming, Accepting and travelling through difficult emotions
Creating space between emotional stimulus and response – as originally described by Victor Frankl.
Actively noticing and relinquishing preconceived mindsets so as to move away from "premature cognitive commitment" and open up to new ways of seeing the world (Ellen Langer’s work).
Session 4: Connection to the people in my life: showing up with Care.
Communicating with positive intent -to others and to myself: Intent vs impact
Considering the positive negative ratios in our communication with others and creating more moments of active constructive communication
Noticing and valuing the strengths of others
Thinking about growth mindsets and where we have them we don’t.
Session 5: A heart that is open to Learning:
Success versus mastery (Sarah Lewis’s work); shallow vs deep wins;
Letting go of trying to control the outcome and attending to good process. (Australian psychologist Pippa Grange talks about an open heart (not a clenched fist).
More feeling and joy, less performative. Less need to be the expert (and right) and more openness to curiosity and learning.
Accepting my learning self, rather than having to be performative (in performance mode).
Key Learning Process
The course is delivered over 10 weeks (5 x 2.5 hrs sessions). Sessions are conducted on a fortnightly basis, allowing participants time for experimentation and reflection so that they may discover the tools and practices that are most effective for their individual needs and styles. The course is delivered via live zoom sessions, with a range of supporting material to enable participants to delve deeper into key concepts where they wish.
Simple reflection action activity and the completion of a brief strengths survey (the Via Strengths Survey).
In between each of the five sessions, participants will be asked to undertake brief activities (reflection, observations, experiential).
In the introductory course, these require a time commitment of no more than 30 minutes, in between sessions.
In the in-depth course, time commitment is 45 minutes in between sessions, and experiential activities will include brief daily reflection/observation activities undertaken across the two-week period in between each session.
Participant satisfaction survey and in-brief assessment of participant’s learning outcomes is undertaken at the completion of the final session.
Follow-up questionnaire – to evaluate and support embedding of learning and desired behaviour change/skill development.