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Our Assets for Success package well received at Connect Cornwall event

The sun was shining when we at arrived at Cabilla, Cornwall, beautifully isolated on Bodmin Moor. Hayley Mulenda kicked off the day for Connect Cornwall’s health and wellbeing event. Hayley is an multi-award-winning international speaker, author and change agent at only 26 years old. She talked about her struggles with her mental wellbeing and how she learnt to turn her pain into purpose. Her strives to help young people find a common language with which they can express themselves – something that we(Imagine If) are also attempting with our Assets for Success tool. The room was moved by her energy. A quote she shared with us “the best present is your presence” is one that I will be pinching for my coachee clients.

Next, Kevin introduced Assets for Success; a strength-based development tool that helps people recognise, enhance, and use their skills; building confidence, improving self-management, creating purpose and ultimately improving wellbeing. Assets was developed with business leaders, employees, educators, and students to create synergy between sectors. It captures current scientific understandings of social and emotional learning and executive functioning that help us be safe, social and successful. The audience loved our recipe cards – simple, clear ways to create common language and help people create time for self-development.

Paul Keene [ ] of Future Skills Institute (FSI) challenged everyone to consider situations from different perspectives – a skill certainly key both now and in the future. FSI are doing an amazing job of closing that gap between education and employment, working with Truro and Penwith College to open a skills institute last spring.

Lunch was an incredible vegan feast (I struggled not to tarnish Imagine If’s reputation by going back for thirds). My disappointment of not being able to join the other brilliant sounding workshops, including rain forest walks and nature-focused creative journals, quickly melted away with the enthusiasm of our groups.

We went through the Assets in more detail, placing them in the contexts of the different work environments and situations contributed by our groups. We discussed the different ways of defining resilience, from traditional “grit” to the ability to ask for help and recognise when you’ve done enough. The importance of communication – communicating flexibly to connect with different people and audiences; and finding balance between different communication styles in the workplace, with more informal meetings needed.

In our experience, chats over tea are certainly more productive, which this event understood: an informal opportunity to share learning and create understanding across different disciplines, connected by the need to prioritise wellbeing. We met some brilliant people who we hope to collaborate with in the future, learnt a lot, came away feeling inspired, and certainly didn’t need any dinner.

By Anna Hendrey (Imagine If Director)

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