• thejigsawcoteam


Positive well-being involves the feelings of contentment, happiness and

prosperity. We generally strive for a general feeling of wellness, which includes having a good mental health, keeping our emotions in check, feeling safe, and managing stress. This can be quite challenging the midst of a pandemic. 


2020 has definitely brought about a lot of different and unexpected circumstances. With all this change, we undoubtedly have gone through a rollercoaster of emotions. In the past few months, students have had to make some massive adjustments to their learning, such as having online classes at home, and being away from their friends. 


The year isn’t over, however, and as schools open their doors to students once again, and we all try to navigate into the uncharted waters of this “new normal,”  the struggle is still very much real. All this change can be overwhelming, building negative feelings of anxiety and stress. Here are some useful tips to support students wellbeing in these uncertain times: 


CHECK IN

Teach students not to be afraid of their emotions. Tell them that they are allowed to react to situations in both a positive or negative manner, and then encourage them to communicate these emotions appropriately. Having students share their feelings gives us a better idea of where they are at, helps explain their mood or performance, and can help identify areas where they may need more assistance. 


COMMUNICATE

Talking is a cathartic activity. Talking about your feelings, whether positive or negative, can be a means of release and healing. Communication also opens up an avenue for students to confide in others and realize that they are not alone in feeling the way they do. 


BREATHE

Allow students to pause and take a breather every now and then. With everything going on, it is easy to become overwhelmed or even frustrated. Breathers could take the form of meditation, or walks. These are great for your physical, emotional, and mental well-being. A quick break gives you the opportunity to (literally) step away from whatever it is that is stressing you out. It’s a chance to get some fresh air, and gives you a break from the screen and the confines of indoor space. 


STAY CONNECTED 

The lack of social interaction is a new challenge in these pandemic times. Health protocols involving social distancing and staying at home could easily lead to mounting feelings of isolation and loneliness. Provide students with opportunities to talk and interact with each other through collaborative projects and group discussions, these can also be done online without breaking social distancing protocols. Getting students to reach out to their peers is yet another way for students to cope with those negative emotions that affect mental health.  


KEEP CONSISTENT

In these uncertain times, schedules and routines can provide a sense of  normalcy and stability. As students make their way back to the classrooms, whether physical or online, having a set schedule can provide a sense of structure and consistency. It also helps to make sure that students find time to address other aspects of their being, allotting time for socialisation, exercise, and even self-care. 


GET FIT 

You perform your best and feel your best when your body is functioning right. Encourage students to get their physical wellbeing in check by making sure they eat right, drink plenty of water, have a good night’s rest, and find time for exercise.


TAKE CONTROL 

Have students try to create a self-care plan to gain a sense of control that prevents them from being consumed by their emotions. A self-care plan would allow students to acknowledge their feelings, take ownership of their reactions, and then have the autonomy to decide on what to do next. This reflection makes them realise that they are in control of how to respond to challenges, increasing their confidence and a sense of control over their own lives. 


Ultimately, taking an interest in the holistic development of students and supporting their wellbeing should leave them feeling listened to, valued, and safe. 


End


About the Jigsaw Company

As a social enterprise, The Jigsaw Company was established to transform the lives of people through powerful and transformational teaching, coaching and mentoring. We support young people by developing their literacy skills through fun, engaging, innovative workshops, programmes and events. Our education services develop competencies and dispositions and raise awareness of the various social issues impacting our communities. We strive to provide individuals with a skill for life to enable them to live happy, healthy and fulfilled lives. Team Jigsaw is dedicated to enriching and changing the lives of others and also passionate about helping individuals to achieve their personal and professional goals.


Get connected with us for more information on how to support students with their wellbeing. Social Accounts:

Website: www.thejigsawcompany.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/thejigsawco

Instagram: www.instagram.com/thejigsawco

Twitter: www.twitter.com/thejigsawco

Linkedin: www.linkedin.com/danielrebecca




People are predictably different.


“Why predictably?” I hear you say.


If you really examine and explore this further, although people are uniquely different, funnily enough they can be predictable in their behaviours based on their personalities.


What’s more interesting is, when surrounded by similar personalities or people with similar passions but dissimilar values and beliefs, this is when things start to heat up.


As a teacher, prior to leaving the classroom, I often found myself in the midst of conflicts (both subtle and overt) which did create additional stress and anxieties.

Upon reflection, often those conflicts had arisen due to a clash in personalities.


Everyone had the best possible intentions (for them) and often were so passionate about their ideas and their vision which meant they were not open to alternative suggestions.


In an ideal world, it would be lovely for everyone to get on well and for workplaces and relationships to be harmonious.


However, as Rocky Balboa would say,

“The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows

and unfortunately, this is the same in a working environment and in relationships (both personal and professional).


But don’t panic, as with everything, there’s a solution.


Learning how to avoid or reduce conflict can help individuals to reduce stress and anxieties and focus on boosting those positive hormones - which can help people to feel happier, healthier and more fulfilled.


Interestingly, unique experiences and unexpected events which haven’t been encountered before are perfect recipes for conflicts and drama. Being made redundant, working from home, relationship breakdowns, the loss of a loved one, home-schooling, global pandemics…you name it.


It’s important to learn what we don’t know to prevent being trapped in a web of dramas and conflicts which will impact on your mental, physical and psychological wellbeing.


Psychiatrist Karpman (1965) presents an overview of how conflicts occur in a model which he refers to as the ‘Drama Triangle’. This expresses that each person plays a specific role in any conflict.


Despite the model being triangular, it’s a cyclical approach and individuals can rotate around the triangle depending on the situation and/or their environment.

He introduces three roles: the ‘victim’, ‘rescuer’ and ‘persecutor’ in his model and intriguingly, one role isn’t more superior than the other as all parties have the best intentions. But, when stuck in this metaphorical “triangle” their emotions can be extremely unresourceful which reduces the likelihood for a positive outcome.


So, what do you do from here if you find yourself involved in conflict?


Step 1: Take a step back and assess where you are on the triangle. Each person on the triangle has a positive intention so it’s important to get a bird’s eye view of the situation and try to see it from their perspective.


Step 2: Be your own James Bond or Luther (clearly, I have a thing for Idris Elba) and investigate the facts. It’s important to ask yourself, “What have I actually seen or heard?” and also “Am I making any assumptions?”


Step 3: Find a more empowering resolution. During a situation where tensions are high it’s difficult to think objectively but again, it’s important for you to reflect on the situation and ask yourself, “what would I like to have happen here?”


Step 4: Ignite a more positive and meaningful dialogue with the parties involved and listen to each other.


Step 5: Recognise the role which you no longer choose to play in any conflict or drama. Empower yourself to focus on you and the things which are within your control; let go of the things that you can’t control which no longer serve you.

Just a heads up…

If you’re a teacher reading this, I thank you for all you have done during these uniquely different times. To support you I have partnered with a friend of mine who is also a qualified teacher and transformation coach and we have launched ‘The Teacher Wellbeing Project’. This online wellbeing day will be hosted on the 27th August (from 10am to 2pm). We will be offering training on mindset, resilience and wellbeing, designed for teachers returning to work in September.

For further details please see here: https://bit.ly/theteacherwellbeingproject


About the Writer

Rebecca is an award-winning social entrepreneur, an internationally recognised, fully accredited and qualified Teacher, Transformation Coach, Neuro-Linguistic Programming and DISC Behaviour and Personality Profiling Practitioner.


Rebecca passionately helps heart-centered and purpose driven entrepreneurs and professionals to thrive in all aspects of their lives. Her core purpose is to empower her clients through powerful and transformational coaching, mentoring and training so they can live a truly fulfilled life.


If you’d like support on reducing the conflicts and eliminating the dramas in your life then email Rebecca at rebecca@thejigsawcompany.com.


She also hangs out in her free Facebook group (for heart-centered and purpose driven professionals and entrepreneurs): www.facebook.com/groups/TheJigsawCommunity

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I don’t know about you but for the last couple of months it has felt like I have been in a weird sci-fi movie. On the bright side, like all movies, I know that one will soon come to an end.


However, this doesn’t ignore the fact that it still feels bizarre not to wander carefree around the shops, meet with family and friends, or shake our booties on the dancefloor whilst sipping a beverage.


For now, this is our “new” normal, until another “new” normal comes along.


For us self-employed folk, it’s common for others to think that this unique situation doesn’t impact us as much as everyone else because we should be used to staying at home, but they’re wrong. Whether you’re an introvert, extrovert, ambivert, self-employed, employed or unemployed, as humans we all need a certain amount of human interaction in order to remain sane. Regardless of the extraordinarily uncertain times we find ourselves in, those who are self-employed can and will experience loneliness. But it doesn’t have to be that way. You don’t have to be alone (if you don’t want to be).


I believe that we are all in control of the life we want and choose to live.

Loneliness is an emotionally unpleasant experience which can have an adverse effect on our health, wellbeing and contentment.


So, if you’re self-employed and experiencing loneliness during these uncertain times - I’ve got your back.


Self Reflection

As a mother to a sassy ‘threenager’, peace and quiet is a luxury for me these days. However, no matter what your situation is, it’s important that you find that golden hour to focus on yourself.


Self-reflection is a vital approach to overcoming loneliness and as a self-confessed stationary addict I often find solitude in journaling my thoughts and feelings and taking moments to reflect on them.


Keeping a daily journal can be extremely therapeutic and it can decrease our levels of loneliness as we become more comfortable with our thoughts, thus becoming more comfortable with ourselves.


When journaling, it’s always great to keep a daily gratitude journal where we can train our brains to focus more on the positive elements of our lives and swish those feelings of loneliness to more empowering thoughts and emotions.


Self Care


Other than journaling, there are a plethora of self-care activities we can choose from to continue boosting our happy hormones (endorphins and serotonin).


Guided meditations, yoga, listening to audiobooks, gardening, listening to music and dancing around your living pretending you are Beyoncé (ok, maybe the last one is just me, but you get the gist).


Whatever your favourite pastime is get something scheduled into your week so you have something to look forward to.


It doesn’t matter what you decide to get involved in. All that matters is that you are doing it for you and I can promise you’ll feel a lot less lonely and much happier.


Find your tribe


We are so fortunate that we have been gifted with access to the internet, which means it is a lot less complicated to stay connected with people and build relationships.


On various social media channels such as Facebook and LinkedIn there are a wealth of online communities which we can seek out to be part of.


Find communities which interest you and fulfil your needs and begin to connect with other members. Meeting and mingling online is a lot easier than people think it is, especially when you find the right community.


On the flip side, the internet can be an extremely noisy place which can become overwhelming. If you find yourself in this position, relook at the groups you are part of and silence those which you are not engaging in or receive the less value from.


One thing that our current situation has reminded me of is that time is extremely invaluable.


Unlike a pair of new heels, or an all-inclusive holiday - we can’t buy time. It’s completely free and only we have control over the time we have and how we utilise it.


So, take control, find pockets of “me” time to focus on you, meet and mingle online and reflect on the things you are grateful for in your life.


Loneliness can impact on our moods, thoughts and behaviours so it’s important that we focus on reducing that feeling of loneliness so we can live a happier, healthier and more fulfilled life. Who’s with me?


About the Writer


Rebecca is an award-winning social entrepreneur, an internationally recognised, fully accredited and qualified Teacher, Transformation Coach, Neuro-Linguistic Programming and DISC Personality Profiling Practitioner.


Rebecca passionately helps heart-centered and purpose driven entrepreneurs and professionals to thrive in all aspects of their lives.


Her core purpose is to empower her clients through powerful and transformational coaching, mentoring and training so they can live a truly fulfilled life.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/TheJigsawCommunity

LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/danielrebecca

Web: www.thejigsawcompany.com


#Blogger #SelfEmployed #Loneliness #Covid19

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