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RCGP issues 'gratitude journal' for GPs to write down positive aspects of their lives

The RCGP are considering issuing ‘wellbeing packs’ for its members, which include a ‘gratitude journal’ for GPs to write down what they are grateful for each week.

The wellbeing pack - which is part of an RCGP campaign to improve GP wellbeing -  includes the gratitude journal, a bag of chocolate coins, some teabags, a ‘mindfulness colouring book’ and a notepad and pen.

A ‘gratitude journal’ is a diary in which people write down what they are grateful for, in order to focus on the positive aspects in their lives.

The college said that wellbeing boxes ‘are not the answer to solving the problems facing general practice’, but it will be ’one of many strands of work’ that it hopes with benefit members.

Council members were given these packs at an RCGP council meeting on Friday as a test run and to get feedback on the initiative, which is largely intended for AiTs. If rolled out, the wellbeing packs would be avalable for members who want them at events the College is present at.

Dr Duncan Shrewsbury, chair of the RCGP’s Associates in Training Committee, said: ’Wellbeing packs are an initiative directed at GP trainee members of the College, and those in their first years of independent practice. It has been piloted and feedback amongst the target audience – and many outside of it - has been largely positive.’

Further details about this about this and other initiatives will be announced later in the year, taking on feedback and ideas from members, he said.

He added: ’The College is very aware of the pressures currently facing general practice – we were the first to draw attention to these over three years ago when we launched Put patients first: Back general practice calling for more resources for general practice, and more GPs.

’We are equally aware that our wellbeing boxes are not the answer to solving the problems facing general practice - in fact, this is clearly stated in the packs - but it is one of many strands of work the College is exploring that we hope some of our members will find beneficial as they embark on their careers in general practice, at a particularly stressful time in the history of our vital profession.’

It comes as NHS England is preparing to roll out an occupational health service for GPs that will help manage their burnout, following campaigning by Pulse through its ‘Battling Burnout’ campaign.

Readers' comments (74)

  • Jeez - how patronising .. and this just proves just how disconnected the RCGP are to the real world.

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  • Dear All,
    I'm not a member so could one of you please ask on my behalf if Pepper Pig has been validated yet?
    Paul C

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  • Paul Cundy | GP Partner27 Sep 2016 9:55am

    And elected to a senior role in the college by the look of it.

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  • there's a rumour that chocolate money is a part of the package - in which case I'm in.

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  • Will the darkness of my colouring and the bleakness of my reflective writing be used against me in my appraisal? A £5 rebate for all would have gone down better.

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  • Sessional/locum GP at 10.46 yesterday wins the thread.

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  • Do you think we can all get away with an hour of colouring for our CPD this year then? I might get my son to do it. Or do you think we can block out some slots and do this instead of seeing patients? I'm sure they and the other partners won't mind.

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  • I'm especially grateful for the notepad and pen - it makes me feel someone really cares and is looking after me.

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  • Here is my journal for the day. This will improve my bank account no end. I will log into internet banking, click cancel direct debit for the RCGP membership. And think aloud how nice it will be to spend £500. Rather than pay to get a rag mag, be patronised and treated like little children by a body that milks trainees for every penny they have. I would urge the rest of you reading this to do the same. And don't forget to write about it in your gratitude journal, and claim the reflection on your appraisal this year.

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  • There's no green crayon. Dr Duncan Shrewsbury should convene a series of meetings and focus groups to urgently address this deficiency - better than doing any real work after all!

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