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Taking care of yourself

Featured in the First-time Leadership training manual

By Clare Llewellyn West

Category: Leadership

Credit price: 3 download credits (Single user)

Stress is becoming endemic in modern workplaces and junior roles are often the most stressful with considerable responsibility combined with relatively little autonomy. A first leading role will certainly have potential for stress with new decisions to make and new responsibilities to carry out. At the same time an individual may well have lost part of their former workplace support structure because as leader they may no longer feel able to turn to team members for help and a shoulder to cry on. They now also have a responsibility for recognising the symptoms of stress in their own team. Indeed, an added stress for new leaders may well be the fact that team members who are stressed or upset will now turn to them for help and support.

You open the session by introducing the topic of stress and asking the participants to carry out a fairly light-hearted stress audit. You then discuss the causes and effects of stress and the possible impact on them and their teams. Next, you get the group to carry out a short physical exercise both to relive stress and to provide a real life example of one of the ways to deal with stress. Using examples provided by the group, you move on to discuss the kind of interventions they can use to prevent the build-up of stress. Having discussed some stress remedies you ask the participants to put together short and simple personal plans to reduce stress and/or to increase their stress resistance.

Who is it for: This training activity is intended for use by trainers to introduce participants to the reasons for, and some simple remedies to, dealing with stress.

Resource Type:Activity
Min Group Size:4
Max Group Size:20
Typical Duration:01:10:00
No of Pages:17

Resources: View standard resources for Fenman training activities

Purpose: This training activity is intended for use by trainers with first-time leaders as the topic of stress should find a place in almost any programme involving people new to the leadership role. In planning a programme, this activity can be linked effectively with work on time management, ‘Managing yourself’ and ‘Managing time’, and delegation, ‘Learning to let go’. It also ties in very well with ‘The perfect leader?’ since the perceived need to be perfect is often one of the sources of stress. Further methods for reducing stress can be found in the assertiveness techniques introduced in ‘Making yourself heard’. ‘A personal charter’, also provides a valuable addition to a discussion of stress.

Download the training activity, Taking care of yourself as featured in the Fenman training manual; First-time Leadership