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A focus on well-being and resilience at work at CQUni Brisbane

Published:21 June 2018

Well-being and resilience at work presenters at ICOR (left to right) Professor Paula Brough (Griffith), Professor Desley Hegney (CQUni) Dr Sarah Jay (CQUni), Professor Sally Ferguson (CQUni), Chris Crawford (CQUni).

Well-being and resilience at work were in the spotlight this week at CQUniversity Brisbane.

Around 50 participants attended the inaugural International Consortium of Occupational Resilience (ICOR) workshop on 19 June.

Participants came from both government and non-government sectors, as well as from CQUniversity and Griffith University.

CQUni's Professor Desley Hegney and Chris Crawford presented information on the Mindfulness Self-Care Resilience Program (MSCR).

They noted that the program was evidence-based (having been trialled and published extensively) and worked on the principles of ARC – Awareness, Resilience, self-Care.

Mr Crawford led a small mindfulness relaxation session at the end of the presentation.

Professor Sally Ferguson and Dr Sarah Jay from CQUniversity (Appleton Institute) led an information session around sleep.

They noted that genetics have been found to play an important part in our sleep patterns (such as why some are night owls and others spring out of bed with the first ray of sunlight).

The CQUni pair noted that shift work, particularly the way it is designed in the health industry, did not allow shift workers to adjust circadian rhythms.

They noted how the lack of quality sleep can affect both the physical and mental health of people.

Professor Paula Brough, Griffith University, noted that there has been a lot of information known about occupational well-being, however, unfortunately, to date, little has been done by many employers to promote well-being in their workforce. She spoke about toxic work supervisors and toxic work environments.

The afternoon was a group work session with groups of four people looking at particular issues that affect their well-being at work and looking for suggestions from other wider groups on strategies to address them.

Participants shared their stories about the influences on well-being and productivity within their individual workplaces.

There were four major themes arising from the group feedback: the influence of the supervisor on the team; the influence of the employer – particularly economic and policy; personal characteristics; and programs that enhance and build well-being and resilience (such as good support networks, lifestyle, work/life balance, mindfulness).

Many participants requested regular workshops as part of the ongoing work of the ICOR.