Andries Pretorius of One Step North challenges the Cognisess Team.

When we lose an hour of sleep for daylight saving there is a 23% spike in heart attacks. Workplace accidents increase, as does the suicide rate.

Ok Andries you have our attention.

The Cognisess team recently joined a two-part programme introduced to us by Andries Pretorius, former Welsh Rugby International – turned – Master of Business Psychology.

Founded on his experience and published research in professional sport, Andries and his team at One Step North https://www.1stepnorth.com/ offer a full range of bespoke training services to ‘unlock personal and team performance.’ 

He refers to ‘mental GOOD health’ and offers a number of insights and recommendations for promoting and preserving it. 

Great to see familiar faces smiling. Thanks for the element of humour One Step North.

What did he tell us?

In session 1 we are taken through the effects of hormones on our bodies, attitudes, function and performance:  Cortisol, Endorphins, Dopamine, Serotonin, Melatonin and Oxytocin.

Largely, the information he gave us was nothing we hadn’t read or heard before but his presentation certainly woke us up.  He cleverly illustrated how and why we react like we do to certain situations, under varying levels of stress.  He highlighted factors like caffeine intake vs hydration and the importance of eating something green for breakfast.  Did you realise that just 2% dehydration can affect concentrate … erm … what was I saying?  Gulp.

Session 2 focused on the importance of sleep for our physical and mental wellbeing.  Especially pertinent at present, whilst many of us are battling home school as well as work and increasingly working evenings and weekends.  It was quite a wake-up call, (excuse the pun), to many of us and enjoyable to spend time with colleagues discussing our wellbeing.

What was the feedback?

Feedback from the Cognisess team was excellent and we thank Andries for his time.  Many of our colleagues have taken onboard a number of his suggestions and the general feeling was of positivity for taking time out to think about ourselves.

What resonance with Cognisess?

One of the benefits of using the Cognisess platform is to enable potential.  Identifying, enabling and nurturing talent, whether existing or new must be a priority for every business.  People who feel valued, visible and recognised within an organisation, have better mental and physical health and are more productive.  Fact.  We are exploring ways in which we can work together with One Step North on our journey into a better workplace future.      

On a personal note, it struck me that much of this we consider in the wellbeing of our children … from diet and hydration, to exercise and even the importance of a bedtime routine and limited screen time.  I personally feel neglected … by myself.

I am definitely having a glass of water before my morning coffee now.  Baby steps.

Note:  Cognisess is also taking part in a study conducted by Thrive at Work West of England into mental good health in the workplace.  I look forward to telling you more as it unfolds.