You are using an older version of Internet Explorer that is not supported on this site. Please upgrade for the best experience.

Mental and Emotional Well-being

Just like our other vital organs, our brain needs to be nurtured too. Professor Amit Sood of the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine speaks about how our brain, a conflicted and busy organ, is deserving of the time and attention necessary to nurture it. If you are having difficulty with emotional issues, if you find yourself withdrawing or are afraid to ask for help, know this: most people who do seek help are able to improve their quality of life. But, it takes support. 

Build Your Resilience

What is resiliency?

Just as physically healthy people are better able to bounce back from illness or injury, people with strong mental health are better able to bounce back from adversity, trauma, and stress. This ability is called resilience. People who are emotionally and mentally resilient have the tools for coping with difficult situations and maintaining a positive outlook. Their resilience also makes them less afraid of new things or an uncertain future. Even when they don’t immediately know how a problem will get resolved, they feel hope that a solution will eventually be found.

Resilience is not a trait that people either have or do not have. It involves behaviors, thoughts and actions that can be learned and developed by anyone. 

View this 2-minute video on how resiliency has the power to increase your inner strength.

Self Assessment

WebMD Health Questionnaire- Complete this confidential questionnaire and discover more about your state of well-being.  Once complete, you will be linked to helpful resources--like the meQuilibrium (meQ) assessment.  The meQ assessment, developed by psychologists, is a clinically validated assessment that asks a series of questions and  provides you insight on your natural thinking and response style.  From this, your personal meQ journey is created. 

meQuilibrium (meQ) Digital Tool

The meQ program begins with a clinically validated assessment to learn your meQ personality, sources of stress and top lifts and drags.  The assessment helps you uncover your natural thinking and response style to unlock your personal journey to finding peace from within.  Using your personalized journeys you can create new habits and ways of thinking through the interactive lessons, guided video experiences, and readings.

Intrigued?  View a short video clip from the Chief Medical Officer at meQuilibrium.  ||   Read what your Baystate colleague, Jennifer Arroyo discovered about meQ!

Ready to get started?  First time users must initiate account through the WebMD Portal:
1. Log in to your WebMD Portal (www.webmdhealth.com/bhy)
2. Go to Resources from your homepage and select “meQuilibrium”
3. Enter your email and create a password
4. Access via Mobile App
Once your account is initiated through WebMD (steps 1 –3 above) you can download the mobile app. Search  and download ‘meQuilibrium’ from the app store on your mobile device.  Enter your email and password (created in step  3 above)

Webinar Training Recordings

The Science of Reslience- How to Thrive in Life  This recorded presentation will provide you an "emotional toolkit" of relevant actions you can take to start enhancing your life today!  Dr. Darlene Mininni shares how resilience, emotional intelligence and mindfulness can affect physical health. Science consistently shows that positive emotions make a physiological impact on one's life - whether you are 18 or 80 - and Dr. Mininni offers practical advice to bring more well-being into your life. This lecture is part of the Frank B. Roehr Memorial Lecture Series, which was established by Mr. Roehr's daughter, Suzanne Angelucci, to inform the public on topics associated with the power of humor and positive thinking

Gratitude: A Skill for Happier Living  

Gratitude is a skill anyone can learn as an alternative to regret and fear. We can focus on the positive elements of our lives with a few simple practices. Providing sincere compliments can help us build relationships and be grateful for others. Rather than being grateful because we “ought to,” we can choose gratitude as a way of looking forward to each day.

 

Using Kindness to Achieve Success and Happiness    
Kindness is an admirable aspiration for anyone, and it also can be an effective way to achieve success. By being concerned about others we can build relationships and gain support. By serving others we can be happier about ourselves. Kindness can be more than the right thing to do, it can be a path to success and happiness.

 

Initiating Difficult Conversations     
There are conversations in which the stakes are high: asking for a raise, ending a relationship, giving acritical performance review, confronting disrespectful behavior, apologizing or disagreeing within a group. This workshop is about developing the skills to initiate the conversations which most people find difficult, unpleasant and generally avoid. You will learn the practical skills involved in framing a problem without blame or defensiveness and how to keep the conversation productive.

 

Living Simply: Simplify Your Life    

In today’s digital age, people are exposed to a vast number of choices and opportunities in all facets of life; choices about what to read, watch, listen to or purchase. The result is that people often are more distracted, confused and stressed by the increasing complexity of consumer choices and online social media activities. This topic addresses ways of prioritizing and simplifying your life through adopting a “digital mindfulness” approach.

 

Mental Fitness for Optimal Brain Power
Depending on our lifestyle, we can weaken or destroy connections, or create new, stronger ones. Engaging regularly in certain behaviors and activities, like physical exercise, addressing mental health issues, meditation, and learning a new language or musical instrument, support new wiring and can make existing pathways stronger. Essentially, we can slow down or somewhat prevent cognitive decline by doing challenging mental exercises to keep our brains fit for optimal power. Join us to find out more.

The Confident You: Taking Charge of Your Life
Have you ever had something you really wanted to say to someone, but held it back because of some kind of fear or shyness? Have you ever given in to someone else’s way, and then regretted doing so because you believed strongly in your position. Do you wish you had the confidence to stand up for yourself more firmly in some situations? This webinar will give you some tips on how to add the confidence that helps you feel like you’re in control.

Loving...You! The Art of Self-acceptance
Somewhere along the way, many of us have replaced our positive self-regard with a critical voice. Like a shadow, it hovers at our side, reminding us of our flaws and our unworthiness. To live a fulfilling, serene, happy life, we must learn to love and accept ourselves, flaws and all. This workshop covers the basics of self-acceptance, factors that contribute to a poor self-image and practical tips for loving yourself unconditionally.

Suicide Awareness and Intervention

Newly published research reveals that suicide rates have dramatically increased in the last decade. Suicide is a profoundly disturbing event and many people respond with confusion, fear, and anger when confronting it. This webinar will demystify suicide through discussion of why it occurs, the risk factors associated with suicide, and how to intervene with those who are suicidal or potentially suicidal.

 

Coping with Compassion Stress 
There is a certain type of person who not only accepts the challenges of working in a high stress emotional environment but also excels despite the demands. Whether they are working with individuals who are experiencing trauma, grief, loss, illness or other stressful concerns the people whose role it is to help others in distress are often perceived as dedicated, hardworking, selfless and compassionate. Nevertheless, it is often those whose mission it is to help others who may be at increased risk of neglecting their own self care. This training will raise awareness of the need to maintain appropriate self-care despite the demands of work and/or the pressures of home life

 

Mental and Emotional Health

Mental and emotional health work together to ensure optimal well-being.

Mental health exists on a continuum and the state of one's mental health can slide up and down on that continuum throughout life.  Similar to improving physical health, mental and emotional health can be improved by taking action.

Being emotionally and mentally healthy doesn’t mean you have a problem-free life, but it does mean that you are resilient and able to bounce back when life presents setbacks.  The ability to manage emotions optimally is what can prevent unnecessary and unhealthy stress—which if severe enough can lead to depression and other high risk health states. 

Who can benefit from therapy?

Talking with a therapist can benefit both adults and children with a wide range of conditions.  The most common conditions are anxiety, depression, panic disorders and anger issues.  In addition, behavioral therapy can help treat; phobias, PTSD, eating disorders, ADHD, self-harm, OCD and substance abuse. 

As a Baystate Health team member, you have access to counseling and therapy.  To learn more about your options, visit Confidential Counseling & Therapy. 

If you are in need of immediate help, please call 911.  The National Suicide Prevention Lifelineis: 1-800-273-TALK (8255).   In addition, the Crisis Text Linecan be accessed by texting HOME to 741741

National Resources

Mindfulness and Meditation

Mindfulness

Mindfulness can help relieve stress, lower blood pressure, treat heart disease, reduce chronic pain and improve sleep.

Mindfulness is the practice of purposely focusing your attention on the present moment—and accepting it without judgment. It is  rooted in meditation techniques that help you shift your thoughts away from your usual preoccupations toward an appreciation of the moment and a larger perspective on life. 

Mindfulness has been examined scientifically and has been found to be a key element in happiness.  Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, founder and former director of the Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, helped to bring the practice of mindfulness meditation into mainstream medicine and demonstrated that practicing mindfulness can bring improvements in both physical and psychological symptoms as well as positive changes in health attitudes and behaviors.  Psychotherapists have turned to mindfulness meditation as an important element in the treatment of a number of problems, including, depression, substance abuse, couple's conflicts, anxiety disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorders.

Mindfulness is a way of using your brain to intentionally pay attention to life as it is happening.  Through Mindfulness, you will learn the skills to achieve greater mental and emotional fitness and an enhanced quality of life.  View this quick 2 minute overview of mindfulness.

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Program - This intensive world acclaimed program, created by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, at UMASS Medical School has taught thousands of people how to access and mobilize their inner resources for coping, growing and healing, by exploring the interplay between mind and body—allowing greater ease and peace of mind. To fully benefit from this program, you must be willing to make a strong commitment to attend all classes and to practice daily home assignments for eight weeks.
You will learn how to:
•Respond more effectively to everyday stress and anxiety
•Improve your interpersonal communication and relationships
•Be more fully present to yourself and the people you engage with every day
•Experience a richer more fulfilling life
•Develop a practical routine to sustain mindfulness practices learned in class

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Courses in the Community

 

Center for Mindfulness- Explore available courses both in-person and online. 

Mindful Awareness Practice Center (MAPCenter)- Individual and group mindfulness courses as well as a mindful/intuitive eating course.

MBSR is eligible for the $150 HNE wellness reimbursement

Mindfulness Group Practice Sessions at Baystate:

Come and experience Mindfulness for the first time or continue practicing your skills in one of these weekly sessions, available at BMC and Holyoke. These 30-minute sessions are open to all employees and offered at no cost.  Each session may include: awareness of breathing, body scan, gentle mindful yoga, discussion of stress and mindfulness.
BMC: Tom Carr Room, Fridays  11:30 am- noon.  Facilitator: 
361 Whitney Ave, Holyoke, HIM CR:  Thursdays, 12:30- 1 p.m.  Facilitator: Bob Oldenburg. If first time attending, call Bob at 322-4258

Mindfulness & Meditation Guided Practice through meQuilibrium

meQuilibrium (meQ)- this app is part of the Baystate Healthy offerings and the cost is covered for a.  meQ begins with a clinically validated assessment and resiliency platform that leverages positive behavioral psychology, cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness.  First, you uncover your sources of stress and top lifts and drags.  Then, using your personalized journeys you create new habits and ways of thinking through the interactive lessons, guided video experiences, guided meditations and readings.

Intrigued?  View a short video clip from the Chief Medical Officer at meQuilibrium.  

Ready to get started?  First Time Users must initiate account through WebMD Portal:
1. Log in to your WebMD Portal (www.webmdhealth.com/bhy)
2. Go to Resources from your homepage and select “meQuilibrium”
3. Enter your email and create a password
4. Access via Mobile App
 Once your account is initiated through WebMD (steps 1 –3 above) you can download the mobile app. Search  and download ‘meQuilibrium’ from the app store on your mobile device.  Enter your email and password (created in step  3 above)

 

Yoga and Massage

Transcendental Meditation 

Transcendental meditation is a simple, natural technique that allows your body to settle into a state of profound rest and relaxation and your mind to achieve a state of inner peace, without needing to use concentration or effort.  Learn more at TM.org.   TM is eligible for the $150 HNE wellness reimbursement

Webinar Training Recordings

Mindfulness: Thriving at Home and at Work

Today we are under more demands then ever, both at work and home. This program introduces you to simple mindfulness practices that can bring greater ease and effectiveness both at work and home. Learn practical ways of incorporating Mindfulness into your day that can take you beyond surviving to thriving.

 

Fostering Deeper Connections Through Mindfulness 

Consciously attending to your relationships can foster deeper connections with your colleagues, patients, friends and family. In this webinar you will learn simple mindfulness practices, which can lead to more fulfilling relationships by clarifying perspectives, facilitating communication, and bringing greater appreciation of those you interact with every day.

___________________________________________________________________

Apps

Additional Apps available in the App or Google store include:

10% Happier

Headspace

Meditation and Mindfulness Made Simple

Mental Workout  

Buddify

____________________________________________________________________

Audio

Audio Files - Access a variety of audio-guided practices for meditation, body scan and yoga, through Dropbox.  Simply create and account and you can make the experience mobile via the Dropbox app and loading these files to your mobile device.

Sitting Meditation (45 min)
Standing Yoga (23 min)
Body Scan (42 min) 
Mindful Eating (18min)

MBSR Course Audio CD’s: Available on loan from Baystate Health Sciences Library

                                     

Spiritual Well-being

Chapel Services: Monday-Friday at noon a brief prayer service is held in the Chapel on Wesson 3. The nature of the service varies each day, but the intention is always to pray for needs of the patients, families and hospital staff. It is also an opportunity to meet with a Chaplain.

Walking the Labyrinth: Discover ways this ancient tool can help you find peace of mind and feel more relaxed. The labyrinth is chaplain-guided every Thursday at noon and self-guided for the remainder the afternoon. For a guided walk, meet at the BMC Chapel, Wesson 3. No registration required.

Help with Everyday Responsibilities and Life's Pivotal Moments

Life stressors can leave us feeling emotionally unstable.  Financial concerns, the ongoing "to-do" list, raising a family or caring for an aging family member are just some of the areas where a worklife expert at Life GuidanceResources & EAP can help.

When your ready for someone to help lighten your load a bit, call a worklife specialist who will search out the information you are seeking, saving you time and energy.  You will receive qualified referrals and customized resources that are specific to your caregiving needs:

  • Child care services 
  • Caring for aging loved ones
  • Budgeting
  • Getting married or divorced
  • Credit repair and debt consolidation
  • Financial planning
  • Parenting, child development and raising children with special needs   
  • College planning & scholarships      
  • Summer programs for your children 
  • Selling or buying a home*
  • Home services & emergencies
  • Legal services*- civil and criminal
  • Estate planning and wills*

*All Baystate Health team members and their household members have access to 30-minute consultations with attorneys, at no cost.  If your particular issue requires more than the 30 minutes, you will be referred to a qualified attorney in your area with a 25% reduction in customary legal fees thereafter.

Call Life GuidanceResources & EAP 24/7/365 at 1-855-327-4479.