ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) has launched a new wellbeing hub to provide mental health, lifestyle and community support.
The accountancy body has developed the materials on its global website in collaboration with online personal development coach and Pride of Britain award finalist Ross Anderson – now ACCA’s Wellbeing Ambassador.
Materials now available to more than 500,000 students worldwide includes:
• Two 3-part podcast series exploring anxiety and sleep
• Quick tip podcasts on meditation and nutrition
• Exclusive articles on study, meditation, sleep and exams
An excerpt from a ‘Meditation Made Easy‘ article explains:
Find a comfortable, distraction free space. You can sit upright on a chair or on a pillow on the floor. Don’t lay on your back – that cues the body for sleep.
Think ‘sit with dignity’. Sitting with dignity is right in the centre of two outliers: big, bold and broad body posture (think of an athlete in a confident, winning stance or a superhero-esque pose ) and the ‘ihunch’; a contorted position you see many in while walking the streets with their mobile phone – head tilted forward, shoulders small and rounded. Your sweet spot is in the middle of those. Not too bold, not too contorted.
Okay, now you must find your anchor. Your anchor is the very thing you’re going to use to bring your awareness back when you drift off. And you will, this is totally normal.
The most common anchor is breath. You can either use the 627 formula – breathe in for 6, hold for 2, exhale for 7 – or a mantra, such as release, said repeatedly, over and over. When you drift off, bring yourself gently back to either your mantra or the 627 formula time and time again. Set a timer for 5,10 or 15 minutes and begin. And don’t feel like you have to experience some magical sensation or that you’re cleansed of all of life’s ills when complete. Just like it takes time to strengthen physical muscles, it also takes time to strengthen mental muscles.
Julie Hotchkiss, executive director – people at ACCA, says the launch of the hub comes following a survey issued to students and affiliates – seeking their views on mental health, wellbeing, support currently available and what they would like to see developed by ACCA.
‘The survey garnered a strong response, more than 4,600 students worldwide replied showing the strength of feeling on this serious issue.
A little more than 28% felt their wellbeing wasn’t being supported adequately – ACCA has listened to them and responded accordingly. We have provided accessible podcasts, videos and articles all with actionable advice to support mental health and wellbeing.
We recognise our exams are both rigorous and demanding as the qualification produces the future-ready accountants the world needs. It is therefore important for students to know that we are there to support them every step of the way on their journeys to becoming ACCAs.
I would urge students to familiarise themselves with the material we have made available in order to benefit to the fullest extent in their studies, at work and at home.’
Mr Anderson underlined the importance of organisations prioritising wellbeing and making material readily available.
‘Every organisation has a moral obligation to provide quality wellbeing resources to prevent mental and physical illness and foster mental and physical flourishing.
Not only is it the right thing to do but it’s the smart thing to do. Unfortunately, few fulfil those obligations and those who do approach it with a lacklustre attitude which yields poor results at best.
The few who decide to pioneer wellbeing and make it a fundamental part of who they are develop conscious cultures and thus experience growth of many forms.’
Featured photo from: https://www.accaglobal.com/gb/en/student/wellbeing.html