Hello PPMA and friends,

Last week, heeding the advice of some great colleagues, I left the Blackberry at home while I sloped off to Fuerteventura. When I got there I discovered that I had no network coverage on my mobile. So, I’ve been “off the grid”, with nothing but sun, sea, sand and tapas for a whole week-definitely to be recommended!

As I sat on the plane on the way home, feeling very relaxed, I was reminded of some very wise thoughts that David Ulrich shared with PPMA when he spoke at our conference in Manchester in 2009. He spoke then about the challenges we all faced and about the importance of HR taking care of “ourselves”.

That was two years ago, and the challenges we are all facing now seem so much greater. So I thought I would share with you David’s five hints for taking care of ourselves:

1. Physical. Make sure you have good nutrition, exercise and sleep. Take care of your physical self and make sure there is a space you can be where you feel comfortable.

2. Emotional. Look after your emotional energy and resilience. Find a way to know (or remember) who you are.

3. Social. Surround yourself with friends and support networks. Remember that you need some networks that don’t tie your identity to your work or profession.

4. Intellectual. Brave leaders learn, so be inquisitive.

5. Spirituality. Hold to your values. We all need some sense of meaning, some sense of deeper purpose.

Being in HR in the public sector these days is not for the faint hearted, so it is important, as we support our organisations, that we take care of ourselves too. So I commend David’s five hints to you, and add my own number six- unless they are the purple, squashy variety, no blackberries on holiday!

Til’ next week,

Anne