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Did you know that approximately 792 million people are affected by mental health issues worldwide? And that around 75% of people with diagnosable mental ill health receive no treatment at all? Supporting our colleagues’ wellbeing has always been a priority for us and this past year has seen us lift each other up – higher than ever before.  

Across the world, our colleagues have prioritised their wellbeing, all while continuing to support our customers, clients and each other. How have they remained positive while staying apart? Here are their stories.

Keep your mind stimulated

Keeping your mind busy is an important first step for maintaining a positive outlook. From taking on a new challenge to rekindling an old hobby; remaining socially involved online to setting new goals; actively stimulating your mind will help you to take each new day head on.

Meet Teshinee, a Banking Analyst in our Singapore team. Since she’s been staying safe and working from home, Teshinee’s been cooking up a storm and is thoroughly enjoying testing new recipes.

On the other hand, George – from our Early Careers Diversity Talent Acquisition team – can’t wait for the day when he’s reunited with his colleagues in person, but, until then, he’s focusing on spending quality time with his family.

Then there’s Devika, a Director in our Trading team. She’s thrown herself into her work – “my job is a lot of fun. I work alongside fast-moving, exciting markets and meet new, interesting people every single day. That’s the beauty of trading.”

Whether you focus on your work, family or learning a new skill, keeping your mind stimulated will work wonders in helping you to stay positive while staying apart.

Encourage positive emotions

Studies have found that positive emotions – such as happiness, joyfulness and feeling connected – play an important role in enhancing human functioning and maintaining good mental wellbeing. So, our next piece of advice is simply to do things that make you happy.

Meet Micaela, a Risk Analyst from Belgium. While she’s been based at home, Micaela’s found getting out of the house has been beneficial for her wellbeing – and she has a beautiful spot in her garden, perfect for virtual meetings when the sun’s shining.

Clare, Director of Savings and Investment, has been focusing on catching up with her team every day. Despite their different time zones and packed schedules, they take the time to come together virtually over a coffee. From sharing their experiences to talking through any challenges, they work together to tackle the day ahead.

Our advice? Whatever you decide to do, take time out to do things that make you smile.

Add meaning to your day

While we’re stuck indoors, it can be hard to feel like we’re creating a positive impact on others. From donating to local food banks to reaching out to those in need, carrying out random acts of kindness, no matter how big or small, will add a new sense of meaning to your day.

Last year, Alice – a Wealth Management Executive Manager in our UK team – started making scrubs for NHS health workers alongside her full-time role with us. Her amazing handiwork made such a difference to her community.

In our contact centres, we have meaningful interactions every single day, no matter where we’re taking calls from. Just like Connor, a trusted member of our Customer Champion team who recently prevented a transfer of £10,000 from an elderly customer's personal account after she was almost caught in a scam. “Everything she had was in that account and I stopped it from going into the wrong hands.”

Our colleagues have proudly taken on new, meaningful projects too. Head of Digital Investment Operations, David, played a key role in helping launch the UK Government Bounce Back Loan Scheme in response to the pandemic. Knowing that his day job allowed him to make a tangible difference to millions of individuals and businesses – while working from his spare bedroom – was an incredible achievement.

Whether it’s through your work, by volunteering online or helping out in your local community where safe, introducing a sense of purpose to your day can have a huge impact on your wellbeing and provide an element of control in an uncertain time.

Supporting each other at every step

Whatever changes we see over the coming months, we’ll work as one global team and find new ways to keep supporting each other. Until we can come back together again, our colleagues will continue taking care of themselves, stimulating their minds and positively impacting their friends, family and communities whenever possible – and you should too.

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