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Focusing on yourself and your mental well-being

Could it help beat the winter blues and even make you an even better recruiter?

With January nearly over and most us back at the day job with full vigour, it is easy to forget all those new year’s resolutions about looking after ourselves. And if you have managed to stick with dry January, Veganuary or your new gym regime (kudos if so!), what about your overall well-being, including your mental well-being?

Unfortunately, research shows that the winter blues really do exist, with health organisations providing advice on how to beat what is now widely recognised as a genuine issue faced by many during the darker, colder winter months in the UK.

As cited in Cosmopolitan by Lola Ross, registered nutritional therapist and part of the team behind digital hormone, cycle and mood platform Moody “”Biologically, the shift in daylight hours can often mean less sunshine exposed on our skin, reducing our ability to syntheses vitamin D – a vitamin associated with healthy brain function,”. “Vitamin D deficiency can contribute to making us feel low in January and the winter months.”

And with more and more people being affected by Seasonal Affective Disorder, where symptoms of low mood and depression are more prevalent in the winter months, what better time than now to focus on mental health, and get yourself into a healthy routine that can see you through the whole of 2019?

Yoga, meditation and exercise have all been called out by experts as having positive effects on our mental health. But how often are you able to take time out of your busy day as a recruiter to do these things? It can be so hard to get off that hamster wheel!

Here at the FIRM we have faced the same challenge, but as a team we being tough on ourselves in order to be kind to ourselves! We encourage ourselves – and each other – to take time out of the busy schedules to do exercise, read or just to just relax or the do the things that make people happy. And it is definitely helping to get the most out of the whole team.

Emma Mirrington, Managing Director says: “It’s hard but you have to be intentional about wellbeing. I am a real believer that having a fit and healthy mind as well as body allows you to cope with the inevitable stresses and strains that come with any job. I like to give my team flexibility and look at output as opposed to hours, as by allowing people to have the time to do the things that are important to them as individuals, engagement and productivity are naturally increased.”

And as someone who has recently joined the FIRM I can vouch for this approach working! Since joining in November as Strategy and Capability Director, I have loved having a role that has challenged me but has also enabled me to have more of a work-life balance. I know it is so important for mental health and overall happiness. I try to do a pilates class each week, and it’s such a joy to be able to pick my kids up from school when I need to. It just takes the unnecessary stress out and means I am able to really concentrate on my job the rest of the time, knowing the rest of my life feels in check.

I have been a recruiter for over 20 years. I know how stressful it can be! Sometimes time can be so scarce, it is a toss up between a cuppa and a loo break! That is if you can dodge your most demanding hiring managers on the way!

But I have also learnt that taking a few minutes out for yourself each day can be incredibly powerful, and rather than compromise your work, can dial up your own effectiveness.

A fresh, rested mind can help you see a solution to a problem you have been struggling to navigate for hours! A break away from the desk can help you take a new perspective on things. Contrary to belief, no one will actually die just because we took a proper lunch break or didn’t work until silly o’clock! (we are important but we are not that important, sorry!)

Our batteries need charging. And some things give us more energy than others. When we do something we enjoy, or something that allows us to relax, it acts like a super-charger!

So maybe, just maybe, putting in place some new well-being habits in February will help you become an even better recruiter?

Don’t forget to read our newsletter next month when we will have an article on resilience – the super power we all need to try and develop in order to truly thrive in this ever changing crazy industry called Recruitment! Until then, stay well all.


Rachel Dalboth is The FIRM’s Strategy and Capability Director – to contact Rachel to discuss your teams development needs and understand how we can help you please email

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