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Case Study

Performance Psychology for Safety and Health Professionals Sarah Peake, Medical Support Officer, RAF Case Study

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Sarah Peake has been in the Royal Air Force for twenty years. She’s a Medical Support Officer. Sarah has studies for both our online programmes – Performance Psychology and Behavioural Science – thanks to her husband who recommended them. Sarah tells us why she favoured Performance Psychology.

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I’m genuinely interested in the subject – especially understanding personalities, learning how to think differently and being able to reframe something. This programme isn’t just for people in safety and health as the title suggests – it’s for everyone. What you learn can be applied to your line of work – whatever that may be, and to your everyday life.

My husband heard about the programmes through Dow Chemical, where he works, and thought they were right up my street – he was right!

If you’re open to learning and personal development you’ll love Performance Psychology because it has a dual purpose. Everything is there to help you to become the very best version of yourself – but as a manager or leader it also shows you how to adapt your ways of thinking so that you can fine tune how you engage with your teams, to get the very best out of them too. It takes a holistic approach. I read a lot around this area and do a fair amount of reflection. For me, it’s a different tool to help with fine-tuning and tweaking.

There’s change in any organisation you’re in, so it’s about being able to implement and think differently with change programmes – and refining and utilising the skills and experiences of the team. A lot of it was refresher training or looking at performance from a different angle which was so useful. I spent loads of time working through the programme because there are lots of links to external reading around different models and the different research that’s gone on. You can pause the learning at any time and go back to it. Being able to dip in and out has been brilliant for me. There’s a nice balanced approach to the learning which will suit everyone – there’s reading, videos and visual stuff. There’s a lot of depth to it, so I took my time. I spent a whole week going through it.

I’m in the military, but also the defence medical services and it's been so relevant to me. The subject, Performance psychology used to be very much about the athlete, but it’s not. You can apply these principles into any aspect of your life. I’m bringing some of the techniques and models into my work and homelife – including how to manage my children. Even if it’s personal development you’re after, this ticks all the boxes.

The different steps and processes can be used in absolutely anything – all life experiences. There’s nobody I’ve spoken to who hasn’t had a significant life experience that couldn’t put these principles into practice and gain something from it. If you’re teetering on the edge and thinking about doing it,  I’d say – just go for it.

Sarah Peake

Medical Support Officer, RAF

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