Case Study: How ‘Reset Days’ improved the Wellbeing of the Critical Care team at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

NHS workers are among the highest in need of support, now more than ever. In a post-lockdown world, 92% of trusts are concerned about NHS staff wellbeing, stress, and burnout following the pandemic.

In 2021, Mind It Ltd and Optimus Teams Learning joined forces to support 500+ Adult Critical Care team members within Leeds Teaching Hospitals’ NHS trust in prioritising their wellbeing. 

Team exercises are core to resilience building and team bonding © Mind It Ltd and Optimus Teams Learning

Relax, Reset, Re-Energise NHS staff 

The Adult Critical Care team at Leeds Teaching Hospitals was, and still is, the frontline of the COVID-19 crisis. Throughout the series of Reset Days delivered for the team, we realised first hand that the pandemic left heavy emotional and psychological damage. Across 7 countries, 48% of ICU staff showed signs of mental health conditions such as depression, insomnia, anxiety, or PTSD from fighting COVID .

The aim of the Reset Days was to create an experience for our attendees to feel and understand that their leaders, colleagues, and the Trust acknowledged that they have gone the extra mile during the COVID-19 crisis and thank them for their hard work, and have the opportunity to reflect on the past and move forward. Put simply, we wanted all the attendees to feel valued, experience a treat, and have the opportunity to reset. 

Mindfulness, Wellbeing Workshops, Wellbeing Webinars, Wellbeing Consultancy, Wellbeing at Work, Leeds, Yorkshire, England

The team enjoyed their Reset Day at the Mansion, in Roundhay Park (Leeds) © Mind It Ltd and Optimus Teams Learning

Together with a team of Leeds-based experts delivering powerful experiences, we delivered this series of Reset Days which included wellbeing treatments and team building activities in an outstanding venue in Leeds: The Mansion, a Grade II listed building in Roundhay Park. The tailored wellbeing experience began with breakfast, ended with cream tea, and book-ended by Leadership opening and closing messages. 

The Reset Day offered hard-working staff a taste of indulgence and a sense of appreciation for all their sacrifice, contribution, and effort: 14% of attendees mentioned the setting and food were their favourite parts of the day! 

In this beautiful setting, participants were able to step back, relax, and prioritise their wellbeing. They were invited to participate in individual and collective reflections on COVID experiences, shared with colleagues in small groups. 

They also collaborated on an art project, working together to achieve a common goal and connect. We commissioned a local Leeds artist, Aimee Grundell, to create a display that was hosted for most of 2022 at Leeds City Museum and made the cover of the Yorkshire Post. This collaboration is a case study of the power of local partnerships too: Mind It Ltd and Optimus Teams Learning enabling the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust to work alongside Leeds City Council to bring this exhibition to life for the citizens of Leeds. 

Our Results: NHS Staff were energised and empowered 

This stat says it all: 98% of respondents would recommend the experience of a Reset Day, and most importantly, we measured an increase in individual wellbeing: wellness scores increased an average of 31% on the day, and 70% have had some form of positive lasting effect 4 weeks after their Reset Day.

Respondents’ feedback included: 

  • “It has been a wonderful day I didn’t realise I needed this.” 
  • “For someone who’s always ‘wired’ it felt great to stop and take a breath.” 

The Reset Day took participants to viewpoints where they could see their worthiness of and need for self-care. To be the colleague, partner, parent they want to be, requires them to look after themselves rather than over-sacrificing their own time, health, and energy for others. 

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Choosing to re-energise is an empowering yet alien place for many NHS staff to find, but we believe that this is where the wellbeing magic happens. 

About the author

Lucile Allen-Paisant is an entrepreneur, public speaker and mum of 2. She is the founder of Leeds Wellbeing Week and Director of Mind It Ltd. Former Marketing Director of a fast-growing business, with a wide range of responsibilities and passion for her job, Lucile almost experienced burn-out herself and is now a big advocate of burn-out prevention through wellbeing activities. She created Mind It Ltd, a training company to support employees to thrive at home and at work. Mind It Ltd’s aim is for wellbeing to be on everyone’s to-do lists, every day. 


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