ARU Wellbeing Festival

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Join us for an exciting event covering emotional and professional wellbeing as well as an exploration of how women can thrive through menopause.

  • 0900-0945: Registration, Refreshments, Networking in LAB307
  • 0945-1000: Welcome
  • 1000-1100: A Toolkit for Emotional Wellbeing Dr John Lambie, ARU
  • 1100-1200: Mind Flossing: Launching the first well-being product for dental professionals Dr Mahrukh Khwaja (MAPP 2022)
  • 1200-1400: Lunch break: you are welcome to explore the local area during this time. Lunch is not provided
  • 1400-1600: Thriving through Menopause Lara Williams (MAPP 2023) & Ana Scherer (MAPP 2023)
  • 1600: Close

Talk 1: A toolkit for emotional wellbeing

Dr John Lambie, ARU

Dr John Lambie will talk about a toolkit approach to emotional wellbeing i.e. how to use a range of different techniques to cope with our emotions. The techniques will include: slow breathing, reappraisal, exposure, mindfulness, and self-compassion.

Dr John Lambie has researched emotions and emotion regulation for over 30 years at Cambridge University and Anglia Ruskin University, and also works as a CBT psychotherapist.

Talk 2: Mind Flossing: Launching the first well-being product for dental professionals (TBC)

Dr Mahrukh Khwaja (MAPP2022)

Dr Mahrukh Khwaja is a positive psychologist, dentist, accredited mindfulness teacher, and the founder of Mind Ninja, an award-winning wellness startup dedicated to improving workplace mental health and resilience. Dr Khwaja envisioned a system of support that, just like daily brushing and flossing, took a preventive maintenance approach to mental health. Her mission is to help support the mental well-being of 100,000 people through evidence-based wellness tools. Dr Khwaja works with individuals and organisations, using research-backed neuroscience, and proven positive psychology techniques delivering transformational workshops, products, and long-form resilience programmes.

Mind Ninja’s comprehensive range of training, coaching, and wellness products, including the signature Mind Flossing toolkit and Navigating A Squiggly Life toolkit, have been implemented by a diverse range of organisations, including NHS Health England, Unilever, Colgate, King's College London, and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. Dr. Khwaja has been featured as a well-being expert for The Independent, The Stylist, Daily Express, Marie Claire, Conde Nast Travel, and British GQ. Connect with her on Instagram (@mindninja.wellbeing and @squigglytoolkit) or email Dr Khwaja at [email protected].

Talk 3: Thriving through Menopause

Lara Williams (MAPP 2023)

Ana Scherer (MAPP 2023)

Menopause, a natural biological transition, can bring about a range of challenging symptoms that can significantly impact women's well-being and work performance.

Almost a million women left their jobs, according to a survey carried out for BUPA in 2019. Due to women's reluctance to disclose menopause status and symptoms, the precise count of women departing the workforce remains uncertain.

The impact of women leaving the workforce because of menopause symptoms is felt in the companies they work for and the economy as a whole.

This positive psychology workshop aims to empower women to navigate menopause effectively by enhancing their overall well-being and equipping them with strategies to manage their symptoms.

The workshop will employ a combination of physical movement, group coaching, and positive psychology techniques to assist women in achieving:

  • Improved physical and emotional well-being
  • Enhanced self-compassion and self-acceptance
  • Development of a supportive peer community
  • Acquisition of effective coping mechanisms for menopause symptom management

The workshop, with its focus on creating a supportive community, fostering social relationships, and promoting positive practices, offers lasting means of enhancing women's wellness during menopause and contributing to their general health and workplace success.

The anticipated results include increased well-being through positive emotions generated by movement, community building, and coaching. Research has demonstrated the efficacy of physical activity, coaching, and positive psychology interventions in alleviating menopause symptoms and improving women's quality of life.

Participants will leave equipped with valuable resources, ready to thrive, and enjoy a fulfilling life as they navigate the menopausal experience.

Lara Williams MSc - Co-Founder/Director Momentum4

An L&D professional with over 20 years of experience as a coach & consultant. Lara has been involved in a wide range of projects and activities, in both the public and the private sector, ranging from large professional service firms like PWC and Stantec to Local Government, the Welsh Rugby Union & the United Nations. Whether working with teams or individuals, Lara has a style that challenges current beliefs, emotions, and behaviors to enhance personal growth and performance.

With an MSc in Applied Positive Psychology, Lara utilises Positive Psychology interventions, such as Emotional Intelligence, to support the growth of individuals, teams, and organisations. Momentum4, has developed its own proprietary success framework, The REP Model – Resilience + Energy = Performance. Embracing a human-centric approach, Lara ensures that leadership initiatives prioritise self-care and the four dimensions of resilience: Body, Mind, Emotions, and Purpose. Through the development of effective energy management strategies across these dimensions, there is a greater success for sustainable high performance.

Passionate about creating sustainable change and enabling choice and possibilities. Lara’s drive focuses on clients to shift into action and make a difference. As a female leader in business herself, and a mother of two daughters, Lara is keen to support more women in achieving leadership roles in business.

Personally, Lara enjoys a physical and mental challenge and has pushed herself to her limits in outdoor adventure pursuits from Ironman to rowing the Mediterranean. She translates her drive for performance into effective learning and development initiatives, with a key focus on performance and outcomes.

Ana Scherer (MAPP 2023)

Ana Scherer is a successful coach, business owner, public speaker, and author, animal lover, insatiable learner, traveller, spiritual seeker, athlete, and deeply committed to a healthy and sustainable lifestyle. She holds a BA in Political Science and International Relations from Arizona State University. She graduated from Coach University, the leading coaching school in the world, with over 200 hours of coach-specific training. She is a Positive Psychology practitioner with a Masters degree in Positive Psychology.

Ana has been coaching since 2004, bringing a unique blend of honesty, directness, and nurturing to her sessions. She's had the privilege of coaching hundreds of clients from diverse cultures and backgrounds using face-to-face and phone/online models. Ana's fluency in multiple languages (Portuguese, English, Spanish, and French) and her experience living in various countries (Brazil, USA, Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Portugal) have proven invaluable in understanding her clients deeply, fostering rapport, and cultivating trust in the coach/client relationship.

With a wealth of experience, Ana has worked with many clients, including professional athletes, C-Suite executives, corporations, independent professionals, artists, and entrepreneurs. Her influence extends globally, as she has delivered inspirational talks worldwide, including a TEDx talk in Hong Kong.

Ana is a member of the International Coaching Federation, co-founder of the Brazilian ICF Chapter, and founding member of the Hong Kong ICF Chapter.

Before her coaching career, Ana was a professional swimmer, amassing an impressive list of accolades. She held the titles of South American Record holder and Brazilian swimming champion for 12 years, was a Pan-American Games silver medalist, ranked as the 10th fastest backstroker in the world in 1992, and was a World Master Champion. In 2015, she won four gold medals at the Maccabiah, also known as The Jewish Olympics. Ana's athletic prowess was further recognised at Arizona State University, where she was an All-American and NCAA finalist.

Ana is a natural athlete; her daily exercise routine gives her energy and clears her mind. She lifts weights, swims, practices Pilates and yoga, and plays tennis regularly. Besides loving to move, Ana also loves to travel. She is a natural nomad and sees herself as a true citizen of the world. She is a big advocate for self-care and believes it is one of the best tools for a healthy and balanced life. She thinks we can only give and truly support others when complete.

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