Our belief is that caring for those who care for us is a necessity and not an optional add-on.
With our many collective years working in the NHS and allied professions, we have experienced the kind of culture that you, as health care workers, will have experienced too. A culture where sacrifice is prioritised over self care, where bullying is common and where workers feel undervalued. We too have experienced the endemic stress and burnout and tragic suicide of colleagues.
At First You, we want to catalyse long lasting cultural change – changes that will serve both this generation and the generations that follow.
We know this change needs both grassroots organisations like our own AND the engagement of those in policy making positions. Wellbeing is now on the agenda at top levels. So there has never been a better time for us all to collaborate and create tangible actions that are visible to, and experienced by, healthcare professions on the front line.
This website was developed and launched in less than 10 days. We did this together. With our friends. With colleagues. With people we’ve not met yet, but whom we look forward to meeting. Collaboration at its best.
So welcome to our SuperHub. A super simple way for you to find the best service for you… from quick ways to wind down after a long day at work to longer term support. A safe, independent space where confidentiality is respected.
Our ethos of community and collaboration means that we want to evolve. So we’ll be actively seeking your feedback, thoughts and ideas about what you need and what you like on the site. When you speak, we will listen. And we’ll never sell your details or pass them onto anyone (beyond any professional obligations we may have).
In the longer term we’re planning other great things that we hope you’ll love too.
The Steering Group
A mum of two teenage boys, she loves art, painting, nature and music.
‘Compassion and empathy for patients needs to start with compassion for ourselves, we need to make it okay and normal to ask for help, to share our vulnerability and to support and care for each other.’
Susanna is a GP, Clinical Facilitator and occasional lecturer, with over 20 years clinical experience working both in Australia and the UK. She has had a lifelong interest in mental health issues, with experience of this both at executive clinical commissioning group and grass roots levels.
She recently completed an MSc in Psychological Trauma, with research into the issue of burnout and secondary traumatic stress in GPs and healthcare professionals. Susanna is passionate about raising awareness of the concept of psychological trauma within a healthcare setting: both how this manifests as physical symptoms in our patients and how it impacts healthcare professionals working within the system.
Susanna is a wife, a mum to 2 teenage daughters, and a samba reggae drummer.
“We need to start talking… about morale, workplace culture, stress, depression, anxiety and burnout, physician parenthood, the ‘juggle,’ making time for our passions and staying true to who we were before medicine and who we are when we come home at night. Wellbeing starts by honouring our truth first. We need healthcare leaders to prioritise their own care. We need to bring all of us to medicine.”
Her experience as a patient and the parent of a patient radically changed her view of the way we practice conventional medicine. She advocates a whole person approach to care, acknowledging the mind body connection and the importance of lifestyle choices on our wellbeing.
She believes First You is the guiding, inspiring and reassuring place that has so often been missing throughout our training and careers in medicine. Alarmed by the increasing rates of burnout and distress, as well as suicide among healthcare practitioners, Alison hopes this work will help shift unhelpful beliefs and stigma and lead us to a more compassionate, authentic and kind way of working together.
Liz is an experienced, practicing GP and a qualified life coach specialising in coaching medics. Liz believes that healthcare is at its best when patients are cared for by doctors who know how to look after and prioritise themselves.
She understands that the constant giving and juggling at work and at home, without giving to yourself, is unsustainable. Among other things, she’s walked the path of single parenthood, managing messy families and navigating new relationships with a child in tow. She knows that what got us to where we are in life today is not always what will take us forward. Liz is a mother, a partner and a lover of swimming.
Jo is a physiotherapist, clinic director and coach specialising in the support of health professionals. In the early years of her career, Jo found the deeply ingrained culture and traditions of the health service both comforting and frustrating. ‘Fitting in’ seemed very important but not always easy to do.
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About First You
As a collaborative of healthcare professionals, we've hand picked this collection of wellbeing resources for you, our colleagues. Our website is made and curated by humans. We sometimes get things wrong. Like putting our keys in the freezer. So you'll understand why we encourage you to take time to research any resources or services provided by third parties, including their terms & conditions. We're always happy to listen to and act on feedback. Contact us here.