Actual Experience has been supporting employees during Mental Health Awareness Week by running several health and wellbeing sessions, designed to break down the stigma around talking about mental health in the workplace.
The company has introduced ‘Let’s Talk’ sessions into a regular rotation of employee social and support initiatives. One of Actual Experience’s Mental Health First Aiders, Theo Litston, hosts the ’Let’ Talk’ sessions, which are currently run over Google Meet while the team continue to work remotely during the pandemic, but there is an aspiration to continue the sessions when employees have an option to return to their office in Bath in the future.
For Mental Health Awareness Week, the ‘Let’s Talk’ sessions have been used as informal forums for employees to share their wellness tips for their colleagues to practice throughout the week. A collection of the wellness ideas can be seen in the image below.
‘Chairobics’ have also been introduced this week. Chaired by in-house yoga guru and Executive Assistant Liv Quarrelle, the Chairobics session encouraged employees to take time out of their busy schedules to stetch and get active, even if was just for 5 minutes before immediately getting their heads back down.
The Chairobics session was light-hearted and accessible for all with variations on each movement that suited all fitness and wellness levels. Employees that attended said that they felt much calmer and less stressed following the activity. The session also doubled as an opportunity for employees to socialise across different teams throughout the company.
Wellbeing and collaboration have also been promoted throughout Mental Health Awareness Week in the form of Virtual Coffee Breaks and team games such as Geoguessr and Skribbl. Geoguessr tasks the participants to work together using Google Street View to figure out their location after being dropped on a virtual map and Skribbl is an Actual Experience favourite that has seen a lot of use as an alternative to endless Zoom quizzes and provides a fun and artistic way for employees to socialise.
While on the subject of art, Mental Health Awareness Week has also seen the introduction of a daily doodle challenge that encourages employees to share their doodles on the company’s creative Slack channel, #the-fridge. Doodling has been proven to help people relax, make the brain more alert and help people absorb more detail.
Finally, positive reflection reminders were shared with all employees to encourage them to take some time at the end of the day to reflect and focus on positive outcomes before switching off their laptops and enjoying their evenings.