Creating a 10-minute Pause Space

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Working under pressure for long periods of time can leave you feeling stressed, burned out, and drained. If this is happening to your team, you might find them becoming more anxious, less effective at their jobs, and more likely to take time off.

However, taking the time to acknowledge the stress and unwind during the working day can help to keep stress levels to a manageable level. This guide is designed to help team leaders to run a short session, called a ‘Pause Space’, which allows staff to take some time to relax, reflect on their work, and show appreciation for their colleagues. It was initially created to be used within the NHS, but can be used by those in any industry. And, while it was designed to be used face-to-face, it can also be conducted online if your staff are currently working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The guide provides a basic script for a Pause Space, along with activities to do as a group. These include:

  • a grounding exercise to help people let go of stress at the start of the session,
  • listening pairs,
  • showing appreciation for others, and
  • a winding-down activity.

You can choose to make an account on the Our NHS People site, even if you do not work for the NHS. This allows you to track your progress through this guide and many others, and lets you return to the place you left off if you have to stop part way through a section. Click here to create an account or log in. However, you do not need to make an account to access it if you’d prefer not to.

To see the full list of guides available from Our NHS People, click here.

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