1 in 5 people will experience mental illness this year. Do you want to promote and protect mental health at your work place? We know how. Contact: media@umbrella.org.nz


Hybrid working: How do businesses find the right mix between office and home?

May 11th, 2022

ANALYSIS: After more than two years of disruptions, lockdowns and uncertainty, employers are facing a new reckoning in 2022: getting staff back into the office.

Dubbed by some the “great hybrid return to work”, employers across a range of industries are being forced to consider what the work environment will look like for staff.

Read More >

Great Minds: Advice for Tauranga businesses heading back into the office

Apr 27th, 2022

NZME’s Great Minds project will examine the state of our nation’s mental health and explore the growing impact mental health and anxiety has on Kiwis while searching for ways to improve it. Video / NZ Herald

Read More (NZ Herald subscribers only) >

Covid 19 Omicron: Ashley Bloomfield’s resignation shows work burnout risk

Apr 16th, 2022

Bloomfield has rightly received widespread praise for his efforts in combating the Covid-19 pandemic. But do we really want our leaders working 24/7 to the point of exhaustion and ultimately resignation?

Read More >

Radio NZ

Moving to orange: Experts respond to change in traffic light settings

Apr 13th, 2022

Covid-19 restrictions for all of New Zealand will ease from midnight tonight but a leading epidemiologist says the country is divided in its risk.

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The overwork pandemic: Ashley Bloomfield’s resignation highlights burnout on the COVID-19 front line

Apr 12th, 2022

In Japan it’s known as karōshi. In China, guolaosi. The South Koreans call it gwarosa. The literal English translation is “death from overwork”.

Read More >

The psychological impacts of NZ’s COVID-19 traffic light uncertainty | NewsHub

Apr 4th, 2022

Kiwis contending with uncertainty surrounding COVID traffic light settings isn’t a normal way to live and everyone will be responding differently, a psychologist says.

Watch here on Facebook >

Enabling psychological wellbeing amid business disruption

Mar 29th, 2022

Clinical psychologist and CEO Gaynor Parkin shares insights for positive action on mental health and wellbeing drawn from international and NZ research, and Umbrella’s work supporting business leaders and senior teams navigating new challenges in 2022.

Watch the Webinar >

Money can buy you (11 minutes of) happiness

Feb 7th, 2022

It’s broadly agreed that people spend money to lessen suffering and increase enjoyment. But the answer to the age-old question isn’t so simple – unless, of course, you’re Jeff Bezos.

Read More >

Radio NZ

The Panel with Nuwanthie Samarakone and David Slack (Part 1)

Feb 4th, 2022

The Panel Part 1: Panellists Nuwanthie Samarakone and David Slack discuss ‘psychosocial hazards’ in the workplace due to omicron, using Kiwisaver for home deposits and soda bread!

Listen Now >

The Guardian

When grit isn’t great: letting go rather than pushing through can help our wellbeing

Jan 17th, 2022

By Gaynor Parkin. 

People with high levels of perseverance often persist with difficult tasks to their own detriment. There is value in knowing when to quit

Is it possible to let that go? Is there someone else who can help you? Could you defer it for a week?

Read More >


How to stay merry this Christmas and avoid festive burnout

Dec 12th, 2021

’Tis the season for stress and bother, but there are some simple ways to keep calm amid the pre-Christmas chaos.

Whether it’s work deadlines fast approaching, lengthy “to-do” lists weighing you down or cumulative fatigue coming to the fore, the build-up to the holidays can bring more malaise than merriment.

Read More >

Navigating Socialising During COVID-19

Dec 3rd, 2021

Gaynor Parkin.

Psychologists have suggested that entering the new traffic light system may cause some uncertainty for people around Aotearoa as we determine our own comfort levels with mingling with others, travelling and using public spaces.

Read & Listen Here >

Preparing To Enter The Traffic Light System – Expert Reaction

Dec 1st, 2021

How can New Zealanders make good decisions to lower risk and keep safe when we enter the new Traffic Light framework on Friday?

The SMC asked experts to share the latest on how public health measures can help to keep the coronavirus at bay, and to give practical tips for navigating the new landscape.

Read More >

Boost your team’s energy

Dec 1st, 2021

Are you noticing higher levels of fatigue in your people? Many managers are reporting more of their team members are “running out of puff”, taking longer to get tasks done, and dropping down on energy. Amanda Wallis and Gaynor Parkin examine what we can do about it.

Read More >

The Guardian

Toxic workplace cultures are sacrificing employees’ health – and it doesn’t have to be this way

Nov 30th, 2021

Amanda Wallis and Gaynor Parkin.

By tackling presenteeism, we can make the most of our days at work, and treat our non-work time as a chance to do more of what we love.

Read More >


Covid-19 NZ: Why the vaccines’ imperfections matter

Nov 21st, 2021

Keith Lynch.

The Covid-19 vaccines are incredibly effective but not perfect. Explainer Editor Keith Lynch explores how this lack of certainty can scramble the human brain.

In a recent interview American NFL player Aaron Rodgers spoke about why he had not been vaccinated.

Read More >


Covid-19: Tips to buffer uncertainty by looking after our minds

Nov 10th, 2021

Gaynor Parkin.

OPINION: The new roadmap for opening up the country is in, and “Covid-free” life as we knew it is out.

We’re now navigating new unknowns with masks in hand and many of us are feeling at least a little bit unsure. Without clear markers for what’s next, or a timeline for when life will return to some form of normal, you’re not alone if the uncertainty is taking its toll.

Read More >


Coping with pandemic stress as a small business owner

Oct 27th, 2021

Amanda Wallis and Gaynor Parkin.

OPINION: It’s been a roller coaster 18 months for small business owners in Aotearoa – jumping from lockdown to lockdown, from unknown to unknown, and navigating the minefield of ever-changing employee, stakeholder, and business needs.

Read More >

Coping with ambiguity now Covid’s here to stay

October 12th, 2021

A new and confusing system is now in place thanks to the uncertainty of Delta, and many are feeling more stressed and anxious than ever. Dr Dougal Sutherland, Gaynor Parkin and Dr Amanda Wallis have some practical suggestions on small but helpful ways to help regain some control.

Read More >

We’ve fallen in love with work from home – and some of us would rather quit than lose it

October 11th, 2021

Accustomed to working from home, more people than ever want a shorter commute or flexible hours – and bosses risk mass resignations if they don’t adjust, reports Reweti Kohere.

Take it from me: starting a new job at a new workplace amid a global pandemic is a bizarre experience. I still have not met my (kind and welcoming) colleagues in real life.

Read More >


How to lead teams, with care, through a crisis

Oct 6th, 2021

Gaynor Parkin and Amanda Wallis.

OPINION: As a people leader or business owner, you may have found yourself more stretched than normal this past month with Covid-19 back in the community; navigating ups and downs in your business, dealing with emotional tumult in your own life, and supporting the challenges that your people are facing.

Read More >

The Conversation: Three ways we can move from ‘languishing’ to ‘flourishing’ in a pandemic

September 28th, 2021

OPINION: By Dougal Sutherland, Te Herenga Waka – Victoria University of Wellington.

If you’re feeling uninspired, stagnant and joyless, you’re not alone. A sense of languishing is one of the dominant emotions of 2021 as we navigate life in an ongoing pandemic and process other terrible world events alongside.

Read More >

Radio NZ

How to flourish when you’re languishing in lockdown

September 16th, 2021

The pandemic is having a huge toll on all of us – you might find you’re stuck in a state of feeling ‘meh’, uninspired and stagnant, and largely joy-less and we can do about it. Psychologists call it languishing – and clinical psychologists Gaynor Parkin and Dougal Sutherland, join Bryan to find out how to get from languishing back to a much better mental state.

Listen Now >


How do you prevent toxic leaders and a toxic culture in the workplace?

Sept 14th, 2021

Dave Winsborough and Gaynor Parkin. 

OPINION: If you have 20 minutes spare and an urge to peer behind the curtain, read about the independent review of Mediaworks culture.

The review found there was a boys’ club culture of hard drinking, racist and sexist behaviour and intimidating sexual harassment. “Only hire hot,” was advice on hiring women.

Read More >

Radio NZ

Languishing, burnout and stigma – Delta’s possible psychological impacts

September 8th, 2021

By Dougal Sutherland of THE CONVERSATION.

Analysis – As New Zealand remains under different levels of restriction, the psychological toll of the Delta outbreak may start to show, even as lockdown eases for everyone outside Auckland.

Read More >


How to survive winter workplace woes

Aug 8th, 2021

Let’s face it, we’ve hit the midwinter grind.

At work, it’s also the time when projects are ramping up, sickness is doing the rounds, and even mumbling good morning as you shuffle to your desk on a Monday can feel like a chore. Sound familiar? You’re not alone.

Read More >


Presenteeism: There but not there, a big part of productivity problems

Aug 5th, 2021

OPINION: Productivity in Aotearoa New Zealand is considerably lower than in other OECD countries, despite us working longer hours on average, according to the New Zealand Productivity Commission.

There are an inestimable number of factors that contribute to low productivity, with improved technology and innovation often touted as the top solutions.

Read More >

TVNZ Breakfast

Increasing sick leave

July 23rd, 2021

Your annual sick leave entitlements are due to increase from five days to ten. But with more people working from home will the increase make a difference? Clinical Psychologist Gaynor Parkin joined us to discuss the impact.

Watch now >

TVNZ Breakfast

Burnout in our workplaces

July 21st, 2021

According to international research, it’s almost a certainty that you or someone close to you is suffering from chronic workplace stress…

So for how to combat this wide spread burnout in our offices… President of the New Zealand Institute of Safety Managment, Robyn Bennett, joined us along with clinical psychologist Dougal Sutherland.

Watch now >

We need more psychologists or people will suffer

July 13th, 2021

Psychologists are struggling to cope with the number of people coming to them for help with their mental health.

Registered clinical psychologist and Umbrella founder Gaynor Parkin told Magic Talk’s Danny Watson & Leah Panapa it’s a scary situation to be unable to help people.

Listen now >


Employers: How to mend productivity problems by strengthening employee wellbeing

July 2nd, 2021

OPINION: As a leader of people, how often do you tune out the media noise around mental health and employee wellbeing? You’d be forgiven for thinking that there’s too much to do, too much of the time, for too many people. After all, you’re trying to run a business, not some sort of employee wellbeing spa, aren’t you?

We all know that healthy employees with robust wellbeing are more likely to be engaged and productive. The flip side is also true – when people experience poor mental health and wellbeing, their engagement and productivity suffers, with a direct hit on the bottom line for business.

Read More >

Programme to bolster rural wellbeing

June 30th, 2021

A programme to support rural people respond positively to pressure, uncertainty and change launches next month.

Designed and delivered by the Agri-Women’s Development Trust (AWDT) and Umbrella Wellbeing, ‘Know Your Mindset. Grow Your Influence’ supports rural people – women and men – to engage with uncertainty with meaningful action that bolsters wellbeing.

Read More >


How to make sure that you spend each day the way you want to spend your life

May 19th, 2021

“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing.”

As we hear more about the prevalence of burnout at work, it can become difficult to reconcile the thought that work takes up so much of our lives even when we may prefer that it didn’t. Of great concern is that research finds grave health risks for those working long hours (more than 55 hours per week).

Read More >


We need to prioritise the psychological wellbeing of our leaders

April 23rd, 2021

Throughout the complexity and uncertainty of the Covid-19 world, the decision-makers in our workplaces have been placed under enormous stress to adapt quickly, support their people, and continue to meet stakeholder and business demands. Leaders have stepped up to meet these challenges but, for many, their own wellbeing has dropped way down the priority list.

Global pandemic or not, leaders regularly cite high work demands, pressure to perform, and a blurring of the line between work and non-work time. It’s clear our leaders need support at times–but what’s most likely to work?

Read More >

TVNZ Breakfast

Adaptability in the Workplace

Nov 26th, 2019

As technology redefines how we work, the skills we need to thrive in the workplace are changing too. Clinical Psychologist Gaynor Parkin explains why your ability to adapt is one of the most important skills to have.

Watch now >

North & South Magazine

Working yourself sick? The danger of stress overload

September 23rd, 2019

Stress in the workplace is not only hobbling productivity, it’s seeping into our personal lives and making us sick. Donna Chisholm looks at the causes and hidden costs of chronic stress – and how to lighten the load.

Read More >

Engineering NZ

Stress Videos

Aug 19th, 2019

For engineers, stress is part of life and it can help us to perform at our best or meet a deadline. But too much stress impacts mental health, triggering or exacerbating the development of more serious mental health episodes or reducing our resilience levels.

See videos >


Stress busting: Occupational psychology, the job that thrives on workplace stress

Sept 18th, 2018

As workers face the anxieties of being replaced by robots and companies risk losing disillusioned, expensive talent, the one industry thriving on these fears is occupational psychology.

The industry studies people in the workplace and has roots in 20th century’s military strategy when leaders were being to lead armies and win wars.

Read More >

More workplaces promoting wellbeing for employees

September 5th, 2018

Even the Government is getting on board, with next year’s budget considering wellbeing when it comes to allocating money.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson says looking at wellbeing is important to help deal with complex issues like inequality and climate change.
“We’re not going to be able to face up to those challenges if we’ve got a very narrow approach,” he says.

Read More >

New Zealand Listener

Are New Zealanders overworking?

May 30th, 2012

Information overload and increasing demands from employers mean many of us are struggling to cope with the relentless pressures of the job.

He has covered momentous political events and rarked up politicians on all sides of the House but one thing Duncan Garner hasn’t seen is his daughters, aged 9 and 11, play Saturday sport.

Read More >


Learn to stay calm and carry on

Nov 1st, 2010

A new strategy that helps workers manage stress and keep their health intact is taking New Zealand by storm.

Clinical psychologist Gaynor Parkin introduced the power of resilience training to the New Zealand public when she and Consumer NZ released the book I’ve had it up to here: From stress to strength two years ago.

Read More >

Radio NZ

Gaynor Parkin, on how to deal with stress

January 26th, 2008

Kim Hill interviews Gaynor Parkin about stress in our busy lives and different ways to approach both handling, and talking about stress, mental health and resilience.

Listen Here >

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