And so this is Christmas…
It’s coming up to the festive Season and some of us will be working and some of us will be taking leave and some will be doing a bit of both. It’s a difficult time of year for many with past memories or present realities encroaching on our experience. The current crises in cost of living and the impact of strike action cannot be underestimated whether their effects are direct or indirect. Then there’s the rest of the world….
One of the things we know as psychological professionals is that remaining connected makes a difference. Being connected to others at work and outside work, at home and in our wider families and neighbourhoods makes a difference. Being part of these networks can help reduce feelings of isolation and conversations can help us to recognise that we share many experiences with others. It can also be a source of practical help. The Psychological Professions Network came from a desire to connect psychological professions and those with a passion and interest in this work in a community of practice.
Communities of practice have been defined as ‘..groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly’ (Wenger, 2015). The principles behind communities of practice define the Psychological Professions Network. Nearly a decade ago the Psychological Professions Network began in the North West. The aim was to grow a collective voice for the psychological professions to increase the impact of what we do. Now we have seven regional Psychological Professions Networks with overall membership at over 13,000. This development represents the strength of connection and desire for psychological professions and partners to come together. Look out for our 10 Year Celebration Event in 2023 when we will be showcasing all the fantastic work that has been achieved.
As members of the Psychological Professions Network, we benefit from these connections and also contribute our knowledge and expertise to the network to support and develop it. I know I’ve benefited from making new connections and also sustaining the earlier connections through the network. The connectedness is important in sustaining our enthusiasm and motivation for psychological work. I know there will be responses if I ask a question – does anyone have/know/can share….? I know that I can offer responses too – yes, I’ve got this I can share with you. I know that this goes on across the Psychological Professions Network.
Keeping our communities of practice going has never seemed more important given the challenges in the world around us. I hope that the Psychological Professions Network (and the groups within it) will continue to be a community and communities of practice for all of us. I hope that individually the Psychological Professions Network is a source of support, opportunity and inspiration.
So finally, I’d like to leave you with a suggestion for a New Year’s resolution (after all the food, refreshments and hopefully presents). For those who attended Psychological Professions week, it will look familiar. In 2023 and beyond, I’d like us all to have this in our minds and actions - What can the PPN do for me, and what can I do for the PPN?
With best wishes for a festive and restful break and for a Happy 2023.