Mental Health Awareness Week 2020 – Acts of Kindness
This week is Mental Health Awareness Week and this year’s theme is kindness. Kindness is something we all need a bit more of because we’re adapting to how lockdown and social distancing is impacting our lives and relationships.
When most of us are working remotely and separated from colleagues, friends and loved it’s more important than ever to celebrate acts of kindness that enhance our lives and to understand why they’re so important.
We recognise how important mental health is to all our colleagues and clients, so we’re supporting Mental Health Awareness Week with our #ShowMoreKindness initiative. We want all our colleagues and clients to share their own stories of kindness on social media and come up with new ways to be kind to others.
There’s no doubt that kindness not only improves the mental health of the person receiving it, it also improves the mental health of the person giving it so what will you do this week to show that kindness matters?
What is Simpson Millar Doing?
Our #ShowMoreKindness campaign is kicking off with a few exciting things this week.
Our Head of Court of Protection Melanie Varey is hosting yoga classes for all our colleagues to join this week. This kindness is twofold – Mel has offered the yoga classes as a way to help all Simpson Millar colleagues through lockdown and to help them deal with some of the stresses and strains this new way of living brings.
And, Mel is also raising money for our #staytogether campaign, which is raising money to buy iPads and tablets so people in hospital with Coronavirus can keep in touch with their family, friends and loved ones. We have already bought 170 iPads and delivered them to local hospitals near our offices; so please donate if you can and we’ll buy more!
All Simpson Millar colleagues have been given a #ShowMoreKindness Bingo sheet to use. This allows them to pick out certain small kindnesses to help the people we work and live with.
Some of our ideas on Kindness Bingo include:
- Call someone you’ve not spoken to for a while to say ‘hi’
- Tell someone you know why you appreciate them
- Do something nice for someone you live with, like make them a cup of tea or load the dishwasher
- Arrange to have video lunch with a colleague
These are small, but lovely ways to show kindness to the people you work and live with.
We’re also encouraging all our Simpson Millar colleagues to share the kindness they give and get this week on our internal forums and also on social media. Read some of them here.
If lockdown has taught us anything, it’s that the small things matter, so what can you do today to be kind?
Get Involved in #ShowMoreKindness
We’re encouraging everyone to get involved with Mental Health Awareness Week this year and to get out and be kind to the people you live with, work with or those you share your neighbourhood with.
So what can you actually do?
Like everyone at Simpson Millar, you can pledge to be kind every day this week.
And don’t be shy, make sure you share when you get an act of kindness from someone in your day. It could be someone dropping round some home baked cakes to your doorstep, your son or daughter tidying their room or even just one of your colleagues asking if you’re OK. Feel free to share any of your kindness wins this week using our #ShowMoreKindness.
Having conversations around mental health and wellbeing is essential and communicating that it’s OK not be OK and that help is there is so important.
Some amazing people have already been showing their kindness by getting involved in our #staytogether campaign.
- Rolande, a chainsaw artist, made ‘Bow the NHS hare’ to auction off and raised £300. We’ve donated an iPad to Tameside Hospital, who recently cared for her father.
- Gina, an Art Teacher raised £300 drawing pictures of people’s houses and selling them. We’re donating an iPad to Blackpool Victoria Hospital on her behalf.
- Class 4M from Rose Green Junior School held an online quiz and made donations.
- Aggie (10) and Magnus (7) have been selling painted rocks on their doorstep to help raise money for the NHS
#ShowMoreKindness to our Colleagues
Our colleagues have been getting involved too. Read some comments about how they've had people #ShowMoreKindness this week.
I had a meeting recently that was quite a tough one emotionally and with some quite strong characters (I'm sure many of us have experienced this). I came away from the call feeling a little deflated and quite honestly a bit down, but then someone took the time straight after to send me a short message saying I'd done a good job. That message made the world of difference to how I was feeling at that moment, and probably for the rest of the day. So I'd like to say a big THANK YOU to that person, you know who you are.
I got an email yesterday from someone I see most days in the Manchester office, saying that they miss the kitchen chats we used to have when we were making a brew. We’ve put a 30 minute meeting into Skype later this week to catch up, and I’m looking forward to hearing all her news.
I really want to say thanks to someone in my team who has been really thoughtful since lockdown started. I’m a single mum with my kids at home and it has been hard to juggle everything. She has sent me links to videos that my kids will enjoy and lots of ideas to keep them busy while I get on with my work. She would be embarrassed if I put her name on, she didn’t do it for praise, but it has made me feel a bit less like I am coping on my own. I don’t think she knows how much it has meant to me.
As a Manager, you don’t want to feel like you are leaning on your team. It’s your job to be strong and help them, but I’ve had some tough days in the past few weeks. There is one member of my team who always seems to know when I am putting a brave face on when we have our team calls and sends me messages on Skype or calls me afterwards.
Whatever you decide to do this week, show more kindness to the people around you, but also to yourself.
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