Put Your Whole Self In

Friday, 13 March, 2020

“Woah, the hokey cokey…” We all have fond memories of the popular children’s nursery rhyme, but when it comes to work, are we still as confident to put our ‘whole self in’?

Commercial Occupational Health Services Ltd (COHS) is supporting Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England’s new campaign, ‘My Whole Self Day’, next Wednesday (March 18).

Staff will be encouraged to bring their ‘whole self’ into work.

Dr Nicola Dann, a GP, director and founder of Commercial Occupational Health Services Ltd (COHS) said: “The highest performing workplaces are supportive and inclusive.

“Bringing more of ourselves into the workplace can help us to be kinder to our teammates, more understanding of each other’s needs, and work better together.

“Like many, our small team is juggling work / life commitments and we encourage flexible working to ensure our staff have the right balance.

“We create a workplace culture that empowers everyone, as we believe it’s good for mental wellbeing and good for business.”

By putting diversity and inclusion at the centre of mental health and wellbeing, employers can create a culture where people can be themselves at work.

Sam Wells, Wellbeing Co-ordinator for COHS, said: “In a climate where inclusivity is positively encouraged, we should feel able to be our ‘whole self’ in our work environment in the same way that we can elsewhere.

“We shouldn’t have to leave parts of our identity at the door when we get to work – whether that be our current mental health and wellbeing, disability, race or ethnicity, religion or faith, sexual orientation or gender identity.

“If we go to work feeling that we have to hold parts of ourselves back, this can lead to presenteeism, which in turn can lead to difficulties for both the individual employee, the wider team and in turn the employer.

“Teams that feel able to be open and honest with each other work better together and to do this they need a working environment that allows them to be authentic and show their whole self.

“This helps us to be more understanding of our colleagues so we can work better together.”

You can find out more about MHFA England’s new campaign and download free resources here.


MHFA England Your Whole Self Day