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Training teachers for the long haul: the importance of wellbeing. Mary Turner 3-5-13.

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Presentation on theme: "Training teachers for the long haul: the importance of wellbeing. Mary Turner 3-5-13."— Presentation transcript:

1 Training teachers for the long haul: the importance of wellbeing. Mary Turner

2 Staff who suffer stress and burnout Are conscientious and value driven Have too little autonomy and control Hold values at odds with their manager or organisation Give up things they like to do outside work to cope with workload

3 ITT PCET – the context High pressure and excessive workloads - most teachers regard their work as stressful Constant change – organisational change; curriculum change; contractual change (more for less) Increased workplace insecurity Audit culture – e-paperwork central to evidencing compliance The culture of constant improvement (100% +) Bullying management styles

4 The science of happiness and wellbeing ‘Wellbeing’ is a state of mental fitness where positive emotions build resilience to setbacks, and enable individuals to achieve their potential, and to ‘flourish’ in their lives. ‘The mission of positive psychology is to understand and foster the factors that allow individuals, communities, and societies to flourish’ (Seligman & Csikszentmahalyi, 2000). It has been found that positive emotions help us bounce back from life’s setbacks.

5 Findings of positive psychology Happiness levels are not fixed Happier people are more successful (not vice versa) Happier people are healthier Happier people are more productive at work Happier people are more creative 5 ways to wellbeing (NEF 2008) connect, be active, take notice, keep learning, give.

6 Positive psychology and the workplace Positive emotions build resilience to stress Losada ratio 3:1 pos:neg interactions for successful teams 3 elements for job satisfaction: autonomy, mastery and purpose ‘Flow' (or complete absorption) for 'engagement' at work

7 Positive psychology and the workplace Bad jobs make people ill Lack of control damages health and leads to heart disease Disengagement 40% when managers ignore us, 22% when they focus on weakness, and drops to only 1% when they focus on our strengths A bad relationship with your boss is worse for you than chips Burnout is worse for you than smoking

8 A better way in the workplace 5 actions for leaders and line managers: Trust people – give them freedom within guidelines Help people see why what they do matters Give regular encouragement, praise and thanks Help people find and play to their strengths Encourage a healthy balance between work and life workplace-happierwww.actionforhappiness.org/news/new-year-resolution-to-make-your- workplace-happier (3-1-12)

9 Training teachers to sustain a long career Teacher training should include: Team working skills and the Losada ratio Building resilience through positive emotion NEF 5 ways to wellbeing Wellbeing strategies: mini-breaks and mindfulness; hobbies that nourish us Reframing unavoidable negatives

10 Future research Appraisal systems that ’ broaden and build’ Work environments that support teachers (to be creative, to experience flow, to use their strengths, to have autonomy) Engagement via recrafting – a look at job design Research into what helps teachers sustain and how management can best support teachers

11 References Achor, S. (2011) The Happiness Advantage. London: Virgin Books. Aked, J. & Thompson, S. (2008) Five Ways to wellbeing. London: NEF. Asberg, M. In Williams, M. & Penman, D. (2011) Mindfulness: a practical guide to finding peace in a frantic world. London: Piatkus. Csikszentmahalyi, M. (1990) Flow: the psychology of optimal experiences. New York: Harper Row. Dewe P. & Kompier, M. (2008) Foresight Mental Capital and Wellbeing Project: Workplace Wellbeing Future Challenges. London: Govt Office for Science. Fisher, A. [online accessed ]Your job might be killing you. Fredrickson, B. (2009) Positivity. Oxford: One World. Lyubomirsky, S., King, L. & Diener, E. (2005) The benefits of frequent positive affect: does happiness lead to success? Psychological Bulletin 131: ILM (2013) The pursuit of happiness: positivity and performance among UK managers. London: ILM. Layard, R. (2005) Happiness: Lessons from a new science. London: Penguin. Pink, D. (2009) Drive: the surprising truth about what motivates us. London: Canongate. Price, M. (2010) The Lamp of Sacrifice: professional identity and work culture in a college of FE. Doctoral Thesis at University of Exeter. Rath, T. & Harter, J. (2010) Wellbeing: the five essential elements. New York: Gallup. Seligman, M. (2003) Authentic Happiness. London: Nicholas Brealey. Selgman, M. (2011) Flourish. London: Nicholas Brealey. UCU (Feb 2008) ‘Bullying and harassment leaps to the top of the agenda’. Equality News No. 9:1. UCU (Jan 2013) ‘Time to Tackle Excessive Workloads’. UCU FE News 46:1. (UK wellbeing site) (Mary Turner’s site)

12 Praise & thank people Notice the good things Spread the smile Support and help others


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