‘Without rebels the story line never changes’
I first saw this quote on twitter a year ago and thought it was brilliant as I was in a team called the ‘rehab rebels’ taking part in the Paths For All Step Count Challenge. It started as a bit of fun and healthy competition at work, but on reflection it was so much more and it is really where the story line began to change for me. Rebels ‘aim for greatness’, ‘don’t wait for permission to lead’ and ‘point to new horizons’, and all 5 of us led each other at some stage to overcome the many challenges we had, and we kept believing that we could achieve our aim (winning!). The most influential leader in our team was not in a traditional leadership role, but put people in the right environment and they will shine!
By connecting a team who laughed, cried, worked and walked together, we built more trust, respect and confidence both as a team and individually. Not long after the step count finished I saw a job opportunity which was completely different, exciting, challenging and for me, a big risk. Having always probably been a bit of a rebel deep down and with a new found confidence, I knew I had to go for it so I rocked the boat and took the risk.
I’ve always tried to stay true to my values and do what I believe in but sometimes things get foggy and it’s hard to remember this and stop striving to always please others. Completing a course on acceptance and commitment 3 days before my interview brought this right to the forefront of my mind and I went in truly accepting me as me and knowing I would do my best and be content with this; the big achievement for me was being brave enough to apply in the first place.
Being in post as an Improvement Advisor supporting a national project with the Care Inspectorate for 6 months now and writing this blog is still a surprise to me! I would never consider myself a leader; I’m just being true to myself and doing the best I can…..aren’t we all?
A big fear of mine when going for the new job was no longer being in a Physiotherapy role and not having that title, that security and pride, not being around Physio’s, AHP’s, people in healthcare; it’s all I’ve known. However, I’ve come to realise you don’t lose that at all and you can’t not use your ‘physio skills’ and knowledge. In actual fact it’s really positive sharing your knowledge, skills and experience in different settings and sectors with different people; perhaps it’s good for the profession as well?
I’m using the same skills I always have and building on them. From years of connecting with patients and supporting/motivating them to make improvements and move forward, I am now seeing real evidence of care homes I’m supporting buying into this vision, making changes and moving forward. Whether its partnership leads, care home managers, carers, domestics or residents themselves; I’m connecting with them through their values and building strong relationships. I understand where they are in their stage of change and am empathising, supporting and respecting that. I’m giving ownership and achieving small wins which is creating a real sense of hope and confidence. I was recently invited to Jean’s 103rd birthday celebrations which affirmed the relationships I’m building and the difference we’re making together.
I would probably never of considered all this as leadership before now but understanding it’s so much more about who you are as a person and how you live to your values and connect with people; I do think it’s what AHP’s do every day. I love that we were called the rebels and I will always strive to keep being one!