Emotional Wellbeing

A Message from the Wellbeing Team

Your time on this course and on the ship is precious. We want you to experience every moment as fully as you can and emerge with a new outlook on who you are in the world and what you can contribute. In order to maximize everyone’s engagement with the program there are a few important things to consider.

Photo by Oli Sansom

Being a Leader

This is a leadership initiative, and the opportunity is to behave as a leader at all times. Stay constructive, be mindful of your own trigger points, use your insights from LSI both with self and others, as well as the other tools that the program will provide you with. Trust and respect are the start of all things. They enable us to have the tricky conversations. If we can have the tricky conversations we get buy in. If we get buy in we get accountability, and we get results. This is one of the foundational tenets of HB – trust in and respect for leadership is collapsing globally, so this matters to the whole of us.

Boundaries and Confidentiality


  • Are guidelines or rules that a person creates to identify reasonable safe and permissible ways for other people to behave towards them.
  • Psychological term for a person’s ability to tell themself apart from those around them
  • Anything that helps to differentiate between you and somebody else, or showing where you begin and end
  • Mix of personal, cultural beliefs, opinions, attitudes and past experiences and social expectations
  • Operate in 2 directions
  • Protect both
  • Can be communicated by:
    • Actions
    • Words
    • Thoughts
    • Physical
    • Emotions
    • Relations
    • Behaviours and non-verbal cues


  • Means making sure information is only available to those who it is deliberately shared with
  • Privacy is a related concept – the state of not being observed or disturbed by others

Photos by Oli Sansom

Why are these things important?

(Or “but this is a leadership course- surely everyone knows these things??”)

  • To maintain and develop trust and emotional safety
  • Avoid burnout
  • Maintain balance
  • Ensure relationships are mutually respectful and supportive
  • Provide everyone with their best chance of learning
  • Provide a guide for thinking about how we approach ourselves and others when our environment may not be doing this as well as normal

What might blurred boundaries lead us to do?

  • Too much self disclosure that makes others uncomfortable
  • Telling others personal information that was shared to one individual only
  • Not respecting other͛s needs for privacy, quiet time, space
  • Inadvertently breach different cultural norms around physical contact and appearance
  • Socializing- romance
  • Hurt other͛s feelings
  • Feeling confused/lacking clarity around what we should be telling everyone about our trip, sharing photos and anecdotes and learnings and insights; compared to what should be kept to ourselves out of respect for the confidentiality and privacy of others.
  • Expose others emotionally and this enhances their anxiety or distress
  • Create misunderstandings and build tension
  • Feel overwhelmed with other͛s emotions and inadvertently reject them
  • That the group is therefore less cohesive
  • That we feel alone even in a crowd
  • That we are not STRONGER TOGETHER

What is it about HB and the voyage that makes this hard?

  • Enthusiasm for talking about ideas can make relationships seem closer than they are
  • Everyone is really interesting
  • We want to fit in and be liked – perhaps more than other groups
  • You see the same people everyday which increases familiarity
  • You don͛t have objective separate family and friends to debrief with
  • You are in close physical proximity (ALL THE TIME)
  • You may be outside your comfort zone in multiple ways
  • You may be sea sick or on meds that affect your energy or emotions
  • ‘Social contagion’– or rapid amplification of emotions and views through a social group – is more likely in contained environments.
  • You are participating in an intense self learning, emotional development

…… Sound familiar?

What can all we do?

  • Understand the risks and proactively manage them
  • Manage ourselves well, take time and space for own well being
  • Develop good ͚group norms͛ (sometimes called ͚ground rules͛), which we will do while in Ushuaia, and revisit regularly.
  • Group norms mean that we are clear about how we would like to be treated, how others would like to be treated, what can be shared with the outside world, others on the ship, or not
  • Social contagion can work in positive or negative directions – being conscious of it, and knowing we each have a role in managing it, is especially important
  • Stick to them – and if they aren͛t working, let͛s adapt them together
  • Remind others kindly like excellent leaders do, when we overstep those group norms

Photos by Oli Sansom

How to get help

  • Talk to each other in a supportive way
  • Find safe spaces
  • Feedback ideas on graffiti wall, checked by Faculty daily
  • Ask for help from OnBoard faculty
  • Ask for help via feedback box (Checked by the Independent Clinician daily and will respond directly or indirectly as asked or seems best)
  • Ask for help directly from the Independent Clinician, Lead Facilitator or Coaches as appropriate (see roles below)
  • Ask for help from the Expedition Leader
  • Ask for help from the Captain (ultimately responsible for the safety of all crew and passengers)

Role of the Independent Clinician

  • This person is an experienced mental health clinician. That means they have seen and supported many people safely through emotional turmoil. They are safe to say anything too
    • Things said in private therapy space- entirely confidential
    • Things in public ok for sharing to help others unless highlighted
  • Their role is to support everyone to get the most from the experience, provide emotional support as needed and enable all to flourish
  • Available for debriefing, aligning values with actions and behaviours, making sense of experience
  • They are NOT providing formal mental health treatment
  • They are NOT part of On Board Faculty
  • Therapy space is in separate allocated room
  • Bookings can be made with the Independent Clinician directly and through feedback box

Role of Lead Facilitator

  • Is part of On Board Faculty
  • Works with everyone to understand the on board environment and risks, and the roles and responsibilities (on Zoom) before leaving for Ushuaia
  • Leads the process to set up the group norms while in Ushuaia
  • Synthesises and integrates the flow of content between all of the modules
  • Has a lead role in looking after the ͚flow͛ or the social process for the village that we become for the time we are together. This means checking in with the participants, the faculty, the expedition leader to gauge and actively managing things like
    • ensuring there is a place for diverse voices, perspectives, styles
    • pace of content delivery
    • social dynamics, level of enthusiasm or fatigue or engagement
    • emerging issues or group decision-making processes and working with faculty to adjust program accordingly

Role of Coaches

Each of the coaches are On Board Faculty, and have primary roles in leading the delivery of specific areas of content. In their role as coaches they can:

  • Help you interpret your own LSI results and provide advice on how to use them effectively
  • Work through specific situations or personal challenges, using tools such as LSI, within any given context to help solve problems
  • Provide an initial sounding board if you feel you need someone to talk through things with. They will refer you to the Clinician if the issues are outside of their own realm of practice.

Coaching, therapy, mentoring and peer coaching




Peer coaching

Purpose To enhance insight and coping for personal development in life generally. To build capability in life and work. To enhance insight and coping for personal development in life generally and for those with more significant mental health issues. Emotional healing to address internal issues and let go of harmful patterns and behaviours. To provide oversight from a trusted other with specific expertise in terms of career development, outside the normal manager/staff role. To expand career options, to act as conduit to others who can expand career options and provide professional guidance. To work in a collaborative way with an equal other to reflect on problems, question and share ideas in a safe space in order to develop new ideas and solutions.
Setting Private space for set periods of time. In a private space, without distractions, for a set period of time. Reliably meets expectations that environment will be re created each time. Generally in the workplace or equivalent setting, may be over meal or near to work environment or occupational setting. I.e. coffee shop near work place. Informal setting as agreed by collaborators.
Delivered by Trained/accredited Coach, appropriately indemnified for the role. Experienced in working with work and life challenges. Therapist, clinically trained, with professional supervision, appropriately registered and indemnified for role. Trained to work with major mental illness. Any peer or more senior person in similar role to that desired by Mentee. Mutually agreed relationship. Any trusted peer.

Assumption that coachee can be, with support, resourceful, based on a shared assessment that the individual is psychologically intact.

Emphasis on present and future.

Application and solution oriented.

Assumes normal functioning.

Subject able to work with coach and develop clear outcomes.

Uses diagnostic biopsychosocial lens to understand capacity, strengths and limitations. Tends to be more analytic of deficits and use skills to identify deficits to work on.

Emphasis on present and past.

Insight and Problem oriented.

May not be functioning normally at work or home, or in some settings but not others.

Subject may not be able to regulate own emotions, form therapeutic alliance or recognise own goals

Both are competent and psychologically sound.

Assumes strengths.

Emphasis on present and future.

Solution oriented.

Assumes normal functioning.

Subjects should both be able to regulate own emotions within normal range.

That both are equal in capacity if different in skillsets and are psychologically sound.

Emphasis on present and future.

Sharing, understanding and solution oriented.

Assumes normal functioning.

Subjects should both be able to regulate own emotions within normal range.


Focuses on evolving and manifesting potential. On insight and behaviour change, what the person has come to believe about themselves and how this story can change.

Identifies stories, blocks and strengths.

Uses diagnostics for insight.

Explores actions/behaviours that help the individual take control.

Coach as expert but less hierarchical than therapist role.

May think about unconscious assumptions underlying behaviour and discussed with other.

Contact ranges for occasional to multiple sessions, contact on as needs basis between sessions.

Issues may be longstanding or entrenched and mainly internal.

Therapy according to illness paradigms and accepted practice: CBT, CAT, ACT, psychodynamic, interpersonal, relation etc.

Focus on healing and understanding past that influences current thinking, feeling and being.

Looks for deficits, but identifies strengths as well.

Therapist as expert, who has duty of care to subject across all domains. Needs of therapist cannot be acknowledged. Hierarchical difference between therapists and clients which enables trust in process.

May think about unconscious assumptions underlying behaviour, may be overted or not to subjects Discusses transference as a therapy tool.

Minimal contact between sessions, may need crisis and safety plans.

Mentor gives advice based on own experience. Mentor responsible for value of advice but not duty of care and only for that specific advice.

Mentee may give back to Mentor.

Mentor seeks to find things they can advise on. Focus on work and professional development.

Offers lots of solutions.

Mutual accountability, Mentor may have seniority and some specific experience and expertise.

No consideration for the unconscious.

Contact as agreed.

Either party may terminate the agreement without consequence.

Peers ask each other questions to generate new understandings of problems brought for discussion.

Peers must listen and challenge assumptions being made to help each other see situations in new ways.

Peers seek to respect and support each other but not advise.

Offer few solutions, offer lots of questions.

Mutual accountability, work in co creation of ideas.

No consideration for the unconscious.

Contact as agreed.

Either party may terminate the agreement without consequence.