Posted by: ayrshirehealth | July 3, 2013

Life is like a box of chocolates by @aileenahpmh

Life is like a box of chocolates …… you never know what you’re going to get (Forest Gump 1994)

chocolateI always wonder when watching this film, why, when Forest decided to run and run with no particular destination in mind, why people decided to follow him, through the rain, the snow, up the mountains, down the mountains, right up to the point he decided to stop,Gump followers I then wondered when Forest stopped, why did they not keep running and why did they just, (I presume) go back to their everyday lives.

Forest came to mind sitting on the train back from Edinburgh, feeling a bit lonely and a bit…..no hugely overwhelmed. The reason? I was returning from my initial national Realising Potential action plan implementation group meeting with the expectation that I would lead the implementation of the Action plan in Ayrshire and Arran.

Like Forest I was off, on my own to a place I wasn’t sure I would realise was my destination.

The point I stopped running

Realising PotentialThat was three years ago, our event to conclude the implementation phase last month attracted a full house of over a hundred Allied Health Professionals and partners including members of the public. This was the point I stopped running, stood up at the podium and once again felt that familiar sense of amazement that I experienced watching Forest nearly twenty years ago.

The reason “people” people can be amazing, when people are empowered, supported, valued and trusted with opportunities to grow, they often do. People become energised and courageous and find a resilience to challenge the status quo.

Leadership underlines positive change

There are many legacies of Realising potential, some difficult to measure, however the experience has consolidated my belief that leadership underpins positive change. That leadership is not a rank or a profession it might not even be a person, its people and a team with phenomenal capacity for learning provided they invest time to reflect and understand their own values and motivations and the impact they have on those around them.MarkArrow

Back to Forest, my thinking….maybe people ran because they wanted to be a part of something, maybe they ran because they didn’t like where they were, it maybe even wasn’t all about Forest, but more about the fact they had a choice and decided it was for them, Forest didn’t really have to coax just keep being one step ahead!!

One final note, did Forest stop running because he didn’t have support? Maybe…..I’ve started running again because unlike Forest, I have lots of Jenny’s (his best friend in the film). So to all the Jenny’s reading this….thank you….you know who you are and without you I guess I would probably stop running too?

Realising Potential. An Action plan for allied health professionals in mental health: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2010/06/15133341/0

This week’s blogger @aileenahpmh is Principal Occupational Therapist in Mental Health Services, NHS Ayrshire & Arran

Next week’s blog ‘Hope is in the Ayr’ is by first time Ayrshirehealth blogger @clairemuiraaahp service lead occupational therapist in South Ayrshire, NHS Ayrshire & Arran

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