Mental Well-being-write-up


By Christine Walter

Christchurch ANZCAL members had opportunity to gather, learn and converse in the Tudor surrounds of the Heartland Hotel on 21 May 2019.  This was our inaugural Christchurch gathering.

Our theme was Mental Well-being.

A Mindful Start

The afternoon started with a short Professional Development training session in Mindfulness with Lea Godfrey, a  mindfulness practitioner.

She  took us through some of the research, techniques and Mindfulness and Meditationbenefits of both practicing mindfulness and aiding our clients to learn mindfulness.  Lea demonstrated how our amygdala can create “stories” by having us imagine a scenario and connecting what we say with our thought, emotion, feeling and response.  The ability to check in easily and quietly with our thoughts and feelings prevents the amygdala from fully taking control enabling us to capture and/or maintain control of our responses. A mindfulness awareness could benefit many of our clients.

Digital Marketing in 45 Minutes

Mix and Mingle Christchurch

After a wonderful time of laughter filled mixing and mingling complete with evening refreshments we gathered again for an informative, practical talk from Paul Walmsley on Digital Marketing – How to Get Started in 45 Minutes.  Paul has a strong background in IT and started his work career as a trainee scientist in the UK and studying physics.  He became a Systems Programmer in IT and has a First-Class Honors in Applied Computing. A published author, Paul now runs several Post Graduate courses on High Performance Computing at Canterbury University.

Paul began by telling us that an astounding 4 billion people use the internet, of which  3.5 billion use social media.  And Google receives over 70,000 searches per second on any given day Digital Marketing - How To Get Started In 45 Minutesfrom these users.

In Paul’s big picture talk of how to navigate this minefield, he discussed that we first must define our audience, so we understand them.  Then consider what good free content can we offer to capture their attention.

He offered some good simple suggestions and pointers for making our digital communications more effective and the importance of our keywords in both heading and content so that our Search Engine Optimisation was stronger in google searches.

During the talk Paul introduced us to “A.I.D.A” – Attention, Interest, Desire, Action.  Research has demonstrated that five times as many people read the headline than the body of the article.  Our headlines are important to capture the attention of the reader to draw them in.

Akimbo – the Mental Fitness App

Following his interesting, interactive talk, Paul introduced Alan Cox, founder of the Akimbo, the social enterprise on a mission to help millions of people achieve mental strength and wellness.  Watch out for the soon to be release new mental fitness app  Akimbo.

Alan gave a personal and uplifting discussion on his own journey and what he has learnt about dealing with the challenges of mental health as well as what can be done about it.  Alan cleverly integrated science with his personal Alan Coxjourney and shared with us the responses of the hippocampus and amygdala when in stress and how his learnings help him to overcome these. Alan highlighted the power of our imagination in creating perceptions and the importance of challenging any beliefs we have which hold us back as the “truth” we believe may not be the truth.

Of course, with all coaches, learning is one thing, what we do with the knowledge is another. Alan has taken his experiences and knowledge to create the Akimbo app to aid mental well-being.

Alan explains Akimbo as

“a mental fitness app that helps you become more resilient and gain a greater sense of purpose and fulfillment. It’s like having your own personal coaches in your pocket who you can listen to at any time.

Based on the science of Positive Psychology, Akimbo plays spoken content that shifts your thinking.  The personalization in Akimbo means you get matched to the right coaches and hear the content which is most relevant to you.”

This is in the trial phase and due to be launched later this year.

If you would like to know more about akimbo or be one of the first to experience Akimbo, go to the website –

And finally… the power points as well as the recordings for our evening speakers will be in with the resources soon so all ANZCAL members can enjoy them.