Last week at our offices, we acknowledged Mental Health Awareness Week by hosting a variety of activities related to this year’s theme – relieving stress. We got our positivity juices flowing in the office by taking the time to have meaningful conversations with our co-workers and working together in team building games. We wanted to share some of the things we did and continue to do in order to address mental health awareness, as it is a topic close to our heart at AfB. We think more businesses should address the mental health and wellbeing of employees, to create sustainable, happy and productive workplace environment and we are proud of the work we are doing to champion an open and inclusive atmosphere for our staff here.
The Elephant in the Room
It might be 2018, but there is still stigma around mental health. It’s the reason why many mental health charities use the concept of ‘the elephant in the room’ to highlight issues around mental health. Defined as ‘a major problem or controversial issue which is obviously present but is avoided as a subject for discussion’ – the elephant in the room analogy lends itself to issues surrounding mental health and wellbeing. We want to try and make AfB a workplace that de-stigmatises mental health issues and ensure we address the elephants in the room. We put our own spin on this by hosting a ‘find the elephant in the room’ competition! We hid five mini elephants around the office, with five lucky prize winners finding them first. Well done Andrew, Rebecca, Billy, Marta, and Charlotte. But we know the issue is bigger than finding a few toy elephants which is why we provide trained, mental health advisors that all our employees can have access to should they ever need to talk. This is just one of the mental health initiatives we are putting into play here.
Starting your day on the right foot
Last Wednesday, we hosted a delicious wellbeing breakfast. You are what you eat (as the saying goes), so what better way to kick-start the day than by eating a nutritious breakfast to make you feel your best – This was a great excuse for the entire team to get together and chat. It’s so easy for people to eat breakfast whilst glued to their phones or computer screens. Taking time out to eat together was a much more relaxing and stress-free way to start the day!
Taking time out
When planning our activities ahead of Mental Health Awareness week, we had laughter in mind – they say it’s the best form of medicine, right? So, we thought a great way to switch off and have some fun was to play some games. We looked back on our childhood memories and brought in a few of our favourite board games for Thursday’s lunch hour including, Jenga, Connect 4 and Trivia Pursuit (who remembers playing them?!).
To end an amazing week full of activities, we came into work in our usual casual Friday attire along with an art and crafts hour later in the day. We can officially say that colouring books are no longer just for kids and are a great way to get into a calming mood and practice patience in the workplace.
Although Mental Health Awareness Week has come to an end, we’ll be celebrating all year round to support employees who may be suffering from mental health concerns and to raise awareness for discussing openly about mental health. Over the next month, we’ll be organising a bring your pooch to work day, workplace massages, after-hours yoga sessions and we’ll even have a few members of our team becoming mental health first aiders. Follow us on Twitter, we’ll be keeping you updated on our Mental Health Awareness journey.
As you can probably tell, we’re big on Mental Health and Wellbeing here at AfB. We have even written a blog about why it’s so important to us – Click here to find out more
And if you’re interested in a career with us at AfB, you can keep an eye out on our website for openings.