Looking at resilience – My ‘Backchat’ article for ARC Magazine

This time I’m sharing with you an interview article about me and my work round resilience, published following a workshop entitled ‘Building Resilience in a Complex World’ which I presented in July 2019 for the North West branch of the Archives & Records Association (ARA) here in the UK.

Cultivating resilience is a key skill for all of us in these increasingly complex times, particularly those who, like archives and records professionals, often work in relative isolation. My workshop focused on looking at what resilience is, how we can gain insight into our ‘inner self’ and how it influences the way we react to our world, and practical tools that can help us build resilience, supporting us towards reacting skilfully in the moment when we are feeling stressed.

Following the workshop, I was asked to contribute to the ARA’s ‘Backchat…’ article in order that aspects of my approach could be disseminated more widely amongst those who had been unable to attend. The article first appeared in the September 2019 issue of the ARC Magazine, published by the ARA. You can see the original publication here (see pp9-10), and the copyright is mine.


Backchat…

Dr Alison Newby – historian and coach – talks to ARC Editor Matti Watton about how she came to be involved professionally in ‘personal resilience’ and some tips on how to recognise and begin to manage stress in the workplace. (© Dr Alison Newby)

Hi Alison. Could you tell us a little about yourself and where you work?

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Book Thoughts – The Chimp Paradox by Prof Steve Peters

Ever heard of the ‘inner Chimp’? If you have, it’s because of the incredible success enjoyed by Prof Steve Peters’ The Chimp Paradox. The Mind Management Programme for Confidence, Success and Happiness, which first appeared in 2012. Even those who know nothing more than that phrase have been known to change their approach to life because through its graphic simplicity they have recognised there are things going on inside an individual which may have less to do with human logic than emotional reaction.

Chimp Paradox book coverNot all phenomenally successful books classed as ‘self-help and personal development’ are equally worth taking seriously. I tend to check carefully the background of the author in order to see how firmly based her or his ideas are in what is accepted as being scientifically sound. Peters is a consultant psychiatrist who has worked in the UK NHS for many years, been Clinical Director of Mental Health Services, and serves as a Senior Clinical Lecturer of Medicine at the University of Sheffield. This man should know what he’s talking about, and to find a specialist using such approachable images and metaphors is refreshing. They may not appeal to everyone, but the fact that just about anyone can work with them is a huge plus.

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