Claire’s Blog

Some inspiration from Claire

Ever get that Sunday night feeling? It’s not that you don’t like your work, as such, it’s just that the thought of the new week and all of the items on your to-do list seem a little overwhelming perhaps?

Every Sunday night, The Hive of Wellbeing offers words of encouragement, hope, aspiration and a funny story or two to support Educators in smoothly breaking themselves into a new school week. The ‘Sunday Night Blues Spot’ is based around a favourite song whose title or theme reflects a thought for the week ahead. From Lenny Kravitz’s “Are you gonna go my way?”, a story of supporting positive relationships in schools; to Dolly Parton’s “9 to 5”, the tale of managing workload and aspirations; there is a song and an inspirational reflection for everyone!

Thank you!

Thank you to all Early Years practitioners, Support Staff, Teachers, Senior Leaders, Schools and Organisations who have supported The Hive over this last year. It …
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The Hive of Wellbeing

The Hive of Wellbeing

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The Hive of Wellbeing is for teachers and school leaders who want to transform their own lives in order to transform the lives of their young people.

3 weeks ago

The Hive of Wellbeing
Sunday Night Blues Spot: Well, my word! What a week for me at The Hive! On Wednesday evening, I was able to share the incredible news that I have been awarded an M.B.E. for my services to the wellbeing of students, teachers and staff in Education. I am utterly thrilled as well as completely humbled by this recognition and this remarkable honour. It has been a very emotional weekend as I have been overwhelmed by the amount of kindness, warm wishes and love that everyone has conveyed to me via various social media platforms, texts and cards. Thank you to everyone single one of you for thinking of me and sending me such kind wishes.I started up The Hive of Wellbeing as a little seed of an idea almost six years ago, and its success is a credit to the support I have had from all of you and your colleagues throughout schools in Scotland. Thank you all so very much for all of your support. My original idea was to create a network where colleagues could come together, share with one another the challenges that they faced in their work and to consider possible coaching approaches and wellbeing ideas that might support and improve their experiences at work. One of the mottos that I really like and promote is from Marianne Williamson : “You must learn a new way to think before you can master a new way to be.” Therefore my sessions, whether they be 1:1, group or whole staff, aim always to challenge our thinking, shift our perspective and then consider how we might experience our work and life differently. Over the years, the most common feedback theme from my sessions has been: “I thought I was the only one who felt this way but I know now that I am not alone.” It is incredibly powerful to come together and to share, and whilst it is not always easy to feel what we feel, nevermind share it, it is truly transformative to say it safely out loud to another. The phrase “name it to tame it” reflects the power we have when we externalise something that we may have been holding onto and which may have felt overwhelming. Naming it allows us to grapple with it and reduce its intensity for us, whether it is a relationship with a pupil or a colleague, or whether it is a feeling of self-doubt or imposter syndrome. Naming it allows us to look at it and discuss with others: “Is this true?” and “What is an alternative perspective?”This weekend, I have been really struck by the Platinum Jubilee Celebrations and the coming together of many people up and down the country. People reaching out, connecting with others, telling stories of their experiences. I have seen the joy and laughter shared by many over this holiday weekend. It is a reminder to me that networks, sharing, connectedness are essential for our wellbeing. Whether it is connecting with one another to share bad news or good news, I have seen that coming together over this last five or so years makes a positive difference to how we feel. And how we feel goes a long way to build our resilience and deal with what lies ahead of us. So tonight, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR EVERYTHING!! Your support, your kindness and your connections with me and one another mean everything to me. Let’s keep reaching out and connecting, and I will keep you posted on when The Hive may be coming to a virtual or in-person session near you! 🙏😊❤️youtu.be/ZLPiYZrwAzU ... See MoreSee Less
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2 months ago

The Hive of Wellbeing
Sunday Night Blues Spot: Back to share some thoughts at a very busy time of year in schools. At this time of the term, it’s always really difficult to focus on the one thing. Our thoughts can often turn to next year whilst still trying to anticipate what’s coming this term as well as trying to stay present to children and young people from day to day, hour to hour. It can feel like there’s just a continual chain of jobs to do, meetings to attend and tasks to plan for. We can feel overwhelmed and stressed out about it all every week. Yet it happens every year and somehow, I would argue, we do get through what we need to get through, mostly on time. So might there be another chain that is less tangible yet just as real which can cause us some added and unnecessary stress? Is there a chain of regular, habitual thoughts and beliefs about what we will get through and accomplish that can reduce our enjoyment of being in the moment with our pupils and recognising our successes? Might there be a different way to approach our week ahead by creating new chains of supportive thoughts? Firstly, notice if there is a habitual pattern. Are similar thoughts coming up tonight about the week ahead? Sometimes we might notice this more readily in our bodies. Our physical or physiological response to the week ahead may be our starting point of noticing. Can we feel differently about our week as a start to thinking differently?Second, when we do notice a habitual pattern, how do we break it? One way to do this is to introduce novelty, to “break the state”. It can mean changing up our daily routine, slowing down in parts of our days, or going out for an evening - yes, even on a school night! Reminding ourselves that we can make changes, even in small ways, allows us to retain our autonomy and agency. Who are we when we are not at work? It’s worth considering every day.Finally, reminding ourselves that we have come this far and we will succeed again can support us in gaining perspective. How we want to succeed this time might be done differently so that we build in reminders that working hard may be framed differently and more resourcefully. Are we running a marathon or a series of sprints? How will you approach your work? This week, how might you break the chains of working in ways that best support you? Wishing you a productive week which allows you to build in novelty and helpful changes. ❤️youtu.be/JDG2m5hN1vo ... See MoreSee Less
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3 months ago

The Hive of Wellbeing
Sunday Night Blues Spot: Happy Mother’s Day to you all! In whatever way we have been able to celebrate today, remembering and cherishing the special women who have nurtured us throughout our lives is really important, in my opinion.We all have superwomen in our lives, whether they be our mothers, our grandmothers, our aunties, sisters, cousins or friends, we all have something to learn from these women and we all have something from their legacies to share with others. Education is a sector which is mostly populated by women, especially in early years and primary sectors. Women are often referred to as having qualities of caring, nurturing, understanding… Whilst some of this may be true, men are capable of each of these qualities too. Additionally, women in Education posts are equally capable of being ambitious, strong, powerful, which are perhaps associated more with stereotypical male qualities. I suppose, my point is that I want to learn how to be in my life from the legacies of ALL the superwomen in my life and ALL facets of each of their incredible personalities! Yes, I do want to learn from the men too, but it IS Mother’s Day, so I’ll chat about that in June, yeah?…😊So the superwomen in my life…. I learned to be strong in spirit and in humour from my grandmother. I learned that a spiritual life was important to cultivate from my other grandmother. I learned to be nurturing, loving and to stand up for myself from my own mum, who taught me that strength and gentleness can coexist and be effective. From my sister, I learned that being different is a strength and you will always be accepted by the ones who love you the most. From aunties and cousins, I learned the strength and fun of being part of a wider family. Plenty of laughs. From female colleagues in schools, I learned that being ambitious and aspirational for yourself and others could be celebrated and championed. I learned from all of my female friends the power in connection and the strength of love that holds true when facing adversity. To all of my superwomen, thank you for everything, for all you teach me and continue to show me! Thank you! Who are your superwomen? What’s their legacy that inspires you? ❤️Speaking of legacy, tonight is the final night of The Hive of Well-being as we’ve known it 🥲 I will continue to put resources and brand new videos on my website, but I am now stepping back from my in person coaching and CAT sessions, as I begin a new full-time post tomorrow. I will also continue with the Sunday Night Blues Spot posts until July. However, it is the end of chapter in my life and I would like to take this opportunity to thank every one of you for your kindness, positive encouragement and support throughout my last 5 years at The Hive. Thanks to the legacy of all of the wonderful women and men in my life, I had the courage to try out an idea I had back in 2016. I am so grateful to you all for your support and I hope that in some way The Hive has supported you with your wellbeing during this time. I wish you all every success and please know that I am never too far away…. Same time next week, yes?! ❤️youtu.be/-AphKUK8twg ... See MoreSee Less
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3 months ago

The Hive of Wellbeing
Sunday Night Blues Spot: Another brief post from me tonight as I take a little more time to recover…… but how lovely to see the sunshine this weekend! I hope you have all had a chance to let the sunshine in this weekend. 🌞🌞And the forecast looks good for this week! What opportunities will you consciously plan for this week to let the sunshine into your working week? Lunchtimes? Lessons outside? Before or after work?Metaphorically, what brings you “sunshine” each day? What uplifts you and what can you plan for yourself this week in creating your own “sunshine” moments? Sometimes we create our own weather! Wishing you all a sun-blest week! ❤️🌞youtu.be/VWBSFeB7WIk ... See MoreSee Less
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4 months ago

The Hive of Wellbeing
Sunday Night Blues Spot: Tonight, I’m feeling rather under the weather….hopefully I can shake it off…🦠For those of us this week who need to shake off how we are feeling, this one is for us. Back next week with some more thoughts. ❤️ ... See MoreSee Less
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4 months ago

The Hive of Wellbeing
Sunday Night Blues Spot: “Don’t sweat the small stuff” is a book by Richard Carlson. The idea of the book is to remind you to focus your energy and attention on what matters the most in your work and in your life, and to let go of the insignificant details or small worries that can drain us of our vitality.What are the “big” things, if big means important, that you care about this week? And what are the “small” things that you recognise are needlessly draining your energy? Sometimes we can get into a cycle of thinking about the past or the future in really unhelpful ways. We can ruminate on how we think things will turn out and imagine a range of scenarios, associating different feelings and emotions with each experience. We can dwell on what has already happened and berate ourselves for not handling something particularly well, and “if we could do it again, we would do it so differently.” But what if every past and future experience is simply about our growth and learning? Can we let go of the specific outcomes and focus on what the process can teach us about ourselves? What is it that really matters to us in every experience? Let’s not sweat the “small stuff” of, for example, what others might think about us or what we haven’t been able to achieve. Let’s look at the bigger picture of our purpose, our connections and our part to play in this life-time. Again, this week, we are reminded in the news bulletins about what really matters to people around the world. Safety, family, basic needs being met, peace, freedom of speech. These are just some of the things that matter to us as human beings as we face crises. In dealing with the “big stuff”, we gain perspective. Tomorrow morning billions of people will waken up with “stuff” in their heads - to-do lists, perceived pressures, expectations, as well as thoughts about tasks and activities that energise and excite us too. What are you choosing to focus on tomorrow? What do you want to carry into the start of this week? What “big stuff” will support your perspective this week? What is not worth sweating about? Nothing really matters. Love is all we need. Wishing you a week filled with love, “big stuff” break-throughs and a letting-go of the “small stuff”. ❤️youtu.be/cAVx9RKaLPU ... See MoreSee Less
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