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Blog Posts (8)
- Resilience in the Real World
Resilience in the workplace, not only focuses on the ability to bounce back after adversity, but also on the ability to regulate emotions during times of stress. We often spend our work days battling challenging scenarios; preparing for an important meeting, heavy workloads or meeting tight deadlines. This means that regularly, we have to draw on our personal strengths and resources in our environment, to ensure that potential struggles are not interfering with our capability to work and our workplace satisfaction. Building strong resilience can help you to find more joy, both personally and professionally, by teaching your mind to better evaluate and recover from stressful situations, rather than evaluate them differently. Often, employers use resilience-building interventions to get people to ‘tough it out’ when actually stress is the underlying problem and these workshops are not helping individuals to overcome the impact stress has on their lives. This is why it is imperative to our wellbeing to introduce strong resilience into our day-to-day existence, that can be used in and outside of the workplace to promote good mental health. Here are some top tips from our psychologists at PsycApps to assist with building well-rounded resilience: Emotional Regulation Strong emotions are an essential part of the human experience and are healthy despite feeling uncomfortable or painful at times. Emotional regulation is simply the ability we have to manage our emotions. Healthy emotional regulation is about not struggling with emotions we might experience and not letting ourselves be overcome or overwhelmed by them, like an outburst. For those struggling with emotional regulation, helping to get some perspective and distance from our emotions can be useful, which can come through self-reflective and introspection techniques that tools such as mindfulness, or Acceptance and Commitment therapy encourage. Building a Support Network As humans, we are social creatures who often crave the company of others, especially in times of weakness or stress. As Maslow himself pointed out in his hierarchy of needs*, love and belonging are crucial steps in gaining self-actualisation, thus, becoming more motivated individuals when needs such as love and belonging are met. Is there someone or a group of people in your life who you find yourself turning to for support in your happiest and most difficult times? Did you know that having a close, trusting support network can help you build well-rounded resilience? Is there a location, comfort food or music that brings you reassurance and calm? Whether you seek aid from a person, a place, or something that makes you feel comfort, that feeling of physical or emotional support can make stressful situations easier to manage. *Maslow's Hierarchy of needs pyramid, 1943 Goal Setting Setting goals isn’t just for your 9-5. Introducing personal goals, no matter how big or small, will help you stay focused and give you control over situations. These goals could vary between going to the gym 3 times per week or setting emotional goals such as not letting a bad day at work affect your out-of-hours life. People get to where they want to be in life through having some kind of plan of action in place, rather than generally hoping something will somehow happen. Because of this, goal setting helps us to think about the smaller steps that will get us to where we want to be. Resilience Training Programme At PsycApps, we specialise in building resilience and offer a six-step training programme that is curated by psychologists for anybody in any profession looking to improve their ability to cope with challenging personal or professional situations. If you would like to learn more about implementing the Resilience Training Programme in your workplace, contact our team today.
- Building Men’s Mental Health – pushing back against social influence
Achieving and sustaining good mental health and wellbeing should be a focus for everyone, but there are particular issues men face that are worthy of attention. For instance, approximately 1 in 9 men will be diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) in their lifetime . Considering that MDD is given as a diagnosis of severe depression, many more than this will likely suffer from lesser bouts of depression, which can still be significant and impairing. Relatedly, we know that men are more than three times more likely to die by suicide than women  and that men are twice as likely to become dependent on illegal drugs . The causes of mental health and wellbeing issues in men are complex and multitudinous, but one encompassing perspective involves a social focus and the impact of societal and cultural influences. For example, when you think of the word ‘masculine’, what words come to mind? What traits or characteristics would you associate with someone who is more ‘masculine’? Take a moment to write down 5 – ideally as quickly as you can (don’t second guess yourself). Hopefully, you’ve included some positive and prosocial words, but most people will continue to associate masculinity with attributes like strength, boldness, and independence, among others. The extreme of this enters the realm of ‘toxic masculinity’, which can involve characteristics like dominance and control, but we don’t need to go all the way to the extreme to encounter problems, because, in contrast, someone who isn’t very masculine could easily be thought of as weak or dependent. So just as there are still pervasive stereotypes and influences surrounding beauty that push women to look a certain way, many men feel compelled to avoid looking ‘weak’ or show that they are coping well regardless of whatever may be going on in their life, and doing so all by themselves. However, if we’re pushed to be seen to be managing just fine despite life’s stresses and be doing so alone, this can take a toll on our mental health and wellbeing. We know that everyone suffers at some point in their life, some more regularly and more seriously than others, so to deny the impact of this is to suffer twice as hard. There are some strategies that we can use which will help to push back against the subtle influences of how men are expected to think and behave, which in turn will promote good mental health and wellbeing. These include: 1. Recognise and challenge harmful stereotypes If this post has resonated at all with you, you’re already on your way to challenging traditional notions of masculinity and what men ‘ought to be like’. Question rigid notions of manhood like those that discourage emotional expression or vulnerability. Be aware of societal expectations and stereotypes surrounding masculinity, as these can contribute to mental health issues. 2. Talk about problems and talk coping Social isolation plagues men, so keep up friendships early on and get involved in communities that do the things you like, whether gaming, sports, or other kinds of pastime. Take this a step further though, and when you find the right people, see if you can talk about more than just a shared interest. For example, talk about life and how things are going. If you’re with good friends and you know they’ve had some recent challenge, ask them about it. You don’t have to turn yourself into a therapist to ask how others are doing, and one day, you might value if it is reciprocated. 3. Give yourself a break Everyone has bad days. Days when they don’t want to get out of bed. Sometimes it’s a bad week. Bad days are generally only a problem when they don’t seem to stop, so to have them now and again is human. It would be unrealistic to expect to be on full form every day of your life, so cut yourself some slack when the occasional bad day comes around. Let it happen, engage in some self-care, and take it easy, then dust yourself off and get back to life properly the next day. 4. Find yourself the right role model It’s important to have people to look up to. These people can inspire us and we can aspire to be more like them. But when these people are celebrities or otherwise famous, then like with social media, we often only get to see the newsworthy stuff, like their successes. But whoever you choose, remember that they will sometimes have bad days or struggle with their mental health. Even some of the most ‘macho’ celebrities have opened up about their struggles to try to remind people of the normality of ups and downs with mental health. See if you can find someone you admire who opens up about their mental health and also copes with it in a positive way. 5. Find your supports If you have people in your life that you can talk to when you feel down, you’re fortunate and should be grateful for these relationships. But people aren’t always the most reliable, so it’s good to have other sources of support that we can also turn to when we need to feel better. For example, are there activities you do, or could do, that make you feel good or leave you in a good mood? Perhaps there are places you can go to that make you feel this way? Try to identify a few of these supports that are accessible to you and make sure they aren’t harmful. Also, remember that variety and moderation are key, so rein in the gym or skate park hours, retail therapy, or gaming marathons, and keep things balanced. We also still need people, so consider these additions into your network to maximise your support and do talk things out with someone when it would be beneficial to do so. 1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21047157/ 2. https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/bulletins/suicidesintheunitedkingdom/2017registrations 3. https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/explore-mental-health/mental-health-statistics/substance-misuse-statistics
- Overcoming the Overwhelm: Tackling student-anxiety
The feeling of anxiety can be present in many different scenarios and is mostly a healthy and natural response to have in times of concern. In severe cases, anxiety can be a problem if it lasts for 14 days or longer without an objective reason to worry about. If anxiety is regularly hindering parts of your life, it is important to address this feeling and look into ways you can build resilience to prevent anxiety from negatively influencing your life. School is often a common cause of anxiety in students, have you ever felt the pressure to ‘fit in with the crowd’ due to the fixation on current social media trends? This is not to rule out internal causes of anxiety within the school environment and with the end of the school year approaching, we want to address these causes as well as our top tips on how to combat these feelings. Top causes of anxiety in schools: Did you know that only 15% of UK students said they enjoyed going to school every day in 2022*? If you’re feeling anxious at school, it could be due to one of the following causes: Academic anxiety. This can often be caused by exam stress and the pressure to earn top grades in order to succeed further in life. Social anxiety. Usually caused by being exposed to large groups of people daily and feeling like you don’t fit in with the people around you. Often, this occurs both in and outside of school via social media Bullying. Unfortunately, is very common in schools around the UK and may lead to you feeling anxious about attending the school where the bullies are. Differences in learning. Some students learn better by listening, others by writing and some actioning. If you are unable to retain information by a learning style that is alien to you, this may also be a cause of anxiety. Changes in environment. A common cause of anxiety, specific to this time of year due to the academic year ending and a new one starting. You may feel anxious about leaving school, keeping in contact with your friends, or having new teachers and different classrooms. Ways to combat these problems Academic anxiety. Keep in mind that while grades and academic success do have an economic impact on people’s futures, there is a higher effect of well-being on grade outcomes than the other way around. And that school is a relatively short period in people's lives. Most adults will never be asked about their grades later in life. If you have high pressure for your self-expectation or your parents, that would be worth looking into. You may be holding on to the belief that your worthiness is connected to your academic success. Reframe your anxiety: is this a life or death situation or merely a wave on the surface of your life’s ocean? Build a framework: how well have you done in the past that can lead you to know what to expect? Set up a support system: keep your parents (if they are helpful and understanding) in the loop of how you’re feeling, bounce ideas off them, and ask them for comfort. The same with friends you can rely on Live healthily: sleep at least 8 hours, exercise, drink water, no coffee after 1 pm, keep learning sessions under 90 min, take 2-3 hour breaks None of the above seems strong enough: seek help. Therapists are exactly there for challenging times and are trained to help you manage anxiety Social anxiety. We are social animals, we are literally built to depend upon others, build relationships, and integrate ourselves into social groups. If that is not going smoothly, it is natural and healthy to feel alarmed: time to try something new! Resource mapping: map your friends, who you can trust and confide in, whose shoulder you can cry on. Quality over quantity. Research shows that having 3 close friends is better for your mental health than having 20 acquaintances. Once you’ve mapped out who’s there, you will know if you need to grow your inner circle, or if you should celebrate a moment of gratitude Don’t compare your real life to other people’s highlight reels. On social media, not all is as it appears to be. Be mindful of how following certain people makes you feel and unfollow anyone who doesn’t inspire you or who you’re not enjoying. Invest in relationships. Active listening is one of the most important skills you will ever learn. People want to be heard. Bullying . As stated above, we are social animals, and being excluded from a group, or even actively picked on takes us emotionally back to the days when being excluded meant you were likely to be eaten by a sabertooth tiger the next day. Your nervous system will react that way, and it’s doing its job. Change your environment. Bullies usually struggle with mental illness and are seldom to be reasoned with. Move classes, seats, and rooms if you can. Ask for help. Counseling services at your institution are supposed to help, and many of them do it well. Schedule a meeting. Take responsibility for your social impact. There is never an excuse for bullying, but you may have social strategies that are unbeneficial in social settings and alienate you from your peers. Therapy or a candid discussion with a compassionate friend may help surface any if at all. Then decide if that is something you want to change or not. Differences in learning. The modern school setting is not human-centric and we simply do not all fit the mold. If you have differences in learning from your peers I dare say the system fails at accommodating you - not that you are failing the system. That said, it won’t change anytime soon, so you need to work with what is there. Find out the best way you learn and do more of that Get teachers and tutors on your side. If they know you’re struggling and not being ‘lazy’ they are more likely to support you Reframe your academic self-expectations: you do not need to be a rocket scientist - find out what your jam is and follow that path instead of trying to squeeze yourself into career requirements It’s never too late: our founder, who had a notoriously volatile academic history is doing her PhD now at 44 years old. Changes in environment. Accepting change is a hard ideology to overcome. As humans, we have succumbed to daily routines that often make our minds predict our daily outcomes. Below are some strategies to help you prepare for upcoming changes. Set up structures and routines Reframe anxiety to anticipation Remind yourself of all the times you mastered change in your life Find a safe place as soon as possible - a coffee shop, library, dance club *https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1134596/State_of_the_nation_2022_-_children_and_young_people_s_wellbeing.pdf **https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/document?repid=rep1&type=pdf&doi=aab72856c9ef4447ea4a1f8542c2e66a03ba61bd
Other Pages (7)
- Contact | eQuoo Wellbeing
Business Development Director TIM SMITH Business Development Director JAMES LAVER Marketing Manager SHREE MAGDANI Get in Touch Speak to our specialists to find out how eQuoo can help your school achieve positive mental well-being through resilience and emotional health. "I have already learnt how to help control negative thoughts, and as I play through more of the game, I look forward to learning about my own mental health and how to improve my thinking." Paragon Skills Get in Touch Speak to our specialists to find out how eQuoo can help your school achieve positive mental well-being through resilience and emotional health.
- Our Story | eQuoo Wellbeing
A Note from eQuoo Purpose-built for students and staff in education, eQuoo is a team of psychologists, mental health advocates and creatives with a shared passion for improving the mental wellbeing of all students. Mental health is more relevant than ever, especially in young adults but getting support is costly, with long waiting times and associated stigma. That’s why we’ve built a state-of-the-art app, accessible at any time, with the most robust reporting system so that every student and staff member can build the best versions of themselves. "We are here for your students We understand the pressures and challenges Schools and Colleges face and the growing wellbeing interventions needed to support students. Our mission, via our clinically proven solutions, is to build the resilience and mental health of UK students, reducing interventions and helping them become the best versions of themselves. " Tim Smith, Business Development Director Personal Growth Reduce Anxiety Relationship Skills Reduce Depression Resilience Integrated Wellbeing and achievement is an integrated concept Builds Resilience eQuoo is designed to lower anxiety & depression and build resilience Triage System In-app triage system to direct students to the most suitable care Insights Backend access to robust analytics and insights Cofounder, CEO & Psychologist SILJA LITVIN A clinical psychologist with years of experience providing counselling and therapy, including in the NHS NELFT mood and eating disorder division. Silja’s speciality is clinical psychology (depression and anxiety) and systemic psychology, the science of relationships. "Psychological skills are a human's mental toolbox, and I'm here to equip young adults." Cofounder & COO VANESSA HIRSCH-ANGUS On the back of 17 years at AXA in global senior Leadership roles, Vanessa has significant health and wellbeing knowledge and wide-ranging, international business experience across multiple sectors, including Private Equity. "Life has never been more complicated for young people. I’m passionate about finding ways for them to deal with those challenges - to thrive, not just survive" Founders Meet the Team Meet the talented and passionate team behind eQuoo! Our team is comprised of experienced professionals in the field of psychology, gaming, and technology. With their diverse backgrounds, our team members bring a unique perspective to the eQuoo project. From our developers, who work tirelessly to ensure that you're able to enjoy a seamless gaming experience, to our psychologists, who have lent their expertise to developing unique gamified tools that help people improve their emotional health and wellbeing, each member is committed to pushing the boundaries of what's possible in the world of gaming for good. Get to know us better and join us on our exciting journey to revolutionise online gaming! CFO ANTHONY LILLYMAN Business Development Director TIM SMITH Business Development Director JAMES LAVER Lead Researcher Dr. PHILIP JEFFERIES Lead Unity Developer ADELINE TUSHABE Marketing Manager SHREE MAGDANI Head of the Division of Psychology and Language Sciences, UCL Prof. Peter Fonagy Professor of Psychology and Head of the Research Unit Emotion and Motivation, LMU Prof. Markus Maier Professor of Psychology, UCL Prof. Steve Pilling Clinical Advisory Board
- Terms and Conditions | eQuoo Wellbeing