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News

Flourishing in 2013! A place to meet, inspire and support each other to think out of the box!

A chance to meet people and discuss new ideas, facilitated by experts in engagement. Apart from invigorating, dynamic discussion there is the opportunity to connect with others in similar roles and situations, this series of events run by Participation Agency,  will give you some tools to use in your everyday work, to help you keep the spark alight! Participation Agency are 3 organisations working together to deliver innovative facilitation.

July

Being creative and innovative is about being outside the boundary of your organization- essential, as you need the mental space to think differently to work through challenges. What a perfect place for the third Flourish event- The Jerwood Space, SE1. Close to Tate Modern, this striking exhibition space is home to Jerwood Visual Arts a contemporary gallery programme. With performers working in the studios, contemporary art exhibitions in the Gallery and creative organizations on site, it was a uniquely inspiring place for us to meet outside of our organizational walls to harness our creative potential.

This session followed on from our last Flourish 13 session; from the ‘Bigger Picture’ to thinking about the smaller details and using some positive psychology tips to improve wellbeing.

When you are busy, looking and worrying about the growing bigger picture- your brain never gets the chance to clear and think out of the box and focus. So this session was about being more in the present and exploring the smaller details, before they passed you by. It was about having actual conversations, rather than relying on e-mails. About engagement, rather than disengagement, which is costing UK businesses and lowering staff wellbeing.

Initially the group sketched out their journey to the event- not their journey through life, but focused on the smaller details of home to The Jerwood Space. With the use of Strength cards, they chose a strength they used in the journey and had conversations about relating strengths to work based scenarios. These included:

Hope and Optimism- hopefully getting everyone ready and out of the house this morning

Beauty- focus on the beautiful environment; beauty in a piece of work

Persistence- may be boring but necessary to complete something detailed

The activity highlighted the concept of being more present and using strength based approach to life and work. Strengths are activities we are good at and that give us energy when we are using them (Linley, 2009). Using strengths has been shown to help people feel energized and elevated with sustainable well being (Peterson & Seligman, 2004). Using strengths at work can increase work engagement (Minhas, 2010).

Following a quick classic sound mindfulness relaxation and meditation designed to reduce high cortisol levels, the group went into the gallery. At its heart mindfulness is about conscious observations of our thoughts, emotions and perceptions and can be important in helping us to disengage from automatic and negative thoughts, which can stall us. Increasingly, mindfulness has been found to be effective in workplace settings. A spectacular paper sculpture (by Nahoko Kojima, 'The Cloud Leopard', handmade paper cut, 210cm x 110cm) provided a medium for focused observations, discussions and reflection on current work situations, details missed, and what ideas about work this may have raised.

Some of the reflections:
Sometimes ‘simple’ can be more complex when you focus

The more you ‘play’ with something the more you develop it

The importance of ‘building space’ into your structure

Commitment and determination

Find space and take time to slow down

References
Minhas, G. (2010). Developing realised and unrealised strengths: Implications for engagement

Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2003). The Values in Action (VIA) classification of strengths. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association

June 

A re- run for those who missed the first event and a follow up second event 'Ignite your creative spark'- exploring what and how to be more authentically engaged in your work. Location in a London Cultural veiw

March 

The first Flourishing in 2013 event on 7th March was in a spectacular venue at the top of the Centrepoint building in central London from 8.30am – 11am with a delicious breakfast and using our amazing surroundings to focus creatively on issues of perspective and panorama in times when it is all too easy to get bogged down. Participants mapped both own and shared opportunities and concerns - being inspired by the people they have met and conversations they shared.

Future

Future workshops planned for September include ways you can be more innovative with your ideas and creative communication. Cost only £65 for this invitee only event.


 

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