The City of Trollhättan tells us:

Every Wednesday, ten or so members of the Education Department's staff meet in a conference room in the City Hall. One by one they take a seat on a chair. It's time for mental training, a 30-minute workout that requires no change of clothes or special equipment. The effect of the 2023 test run is striking - the participants' well-being increased by 37% after the sessions. Now, the Education Administration staff is giving more people the chance to exercise their brains at work.

The education administration staff is a stable workplace with low staff turnover, both among employees and managers. The results of the annual employee survey usually indicate a high level of satisfaction, but one parameter always stands out: the employees' perceived stress.

- "We chose to give a group of employees the opportunity to try out mental training in order to give them lasting tools to deal with stress and demands from different directions. The well-being of our staff is a benefit both for them and for us as an employer," says Daniel Engelin, who is Head of Department at the Education Administration together with Charlotte Lindberg.

Joint training a success factor
Britt-Marie Ringblom, school secretary at the staff, has coordinated the mental training for the test group. A success factor has been the standing calendar invitation on Wednesday, to connect together and complete the live session held via Zoom.

- Both before and after the session, there is also an opportunity to talk for a few minutes, which is valuable as we come from several different departments within the staff.

- "In addition to the live sessions, which Britt-Marie and her colleagues have chosen to train together, there are a number of recorded sessions of varying lengths that you can run whenever you want via an app," says Caroline Spännar, who runs Mindworkout, the contracted company offering mental training to the City of Trollhättan.

Unusual in the beginning
The results have not been long in coming. After a three-month trial period, the majority of participants responded that their well-being had improved, that they felt more satisfied with life, and that they had better focus/concentration. Almost all of them had participated in the weekly group exercise and were keen to continue exercising in the group.

- "In the beginning, it was perhaps a little unfamiliar, learning to breathe in the 'right' way and to sit together and close your eyes and try to relax, but it didn't take many sessions until it felt much easier to calm down and go into yourself," says Monica Högnert, an administrator at the Education Administration and one of those who have participated in the training.

"More united as colleagues"
However, in the results of the employee survey in the fall of 2023, Daniel Engelin and Charlotte Lindberg noted continued problems with perceived negative stress, the feeling of not being enough and difficulties in planning their work among the staff of the Education Administration.

- "Since those who have tried mental training have been so enthusiastic and the results have been so good, we are giving all staff members the chance to do mental training during working hours in 2024," says Daniel Engelin.

Monica Högnert and Britt-Marie Ringblom are happy that more colleagues can now participate in the training. Both participate in sessions both during and outside working hours.

- Through the training, I feel that we have become more united as colleagues and got to know each other better. It's great," says Monica Högnert.

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