Employee Wellness Newsletter

Support the Spread of wellness

October 2020

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The IISD EWS Newletter

This newsletter will provide you with information on emotional, mental, physical and nutritional health. We will focus on how to help you be proactive about your health and well-being. The EWS Newsletter will also provide support & guidance resources that we hope will assist you in dealing with stressors and challenges.
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Brain Health

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Pillars of Brain Health

Lifestyle has a profound impact on your brain health. What you eat and drink, how much you exercise, how well you sleep, the way you socialize, and how you manage stress are all critically important to your brain health.

Eliminate Automatic Negative Thoughts (ANTS)

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Here are the simple steps to eliminate the ANTs. Whenever you feel sad, mad, nervous, or out of control, do the following:

- Write down your automatic negative thoughts (ANTs). The act of writing down the ANTs

helps to get the invaders out of your head.

- Identify the ANT species. There are 9 types of ANTs.

  • All-or-Nothing ANTs: Thinking that things are either all good or all bad

  • Less-Than ANTs: Comparing and seeing yourself as less than others

  • Just-the-Bad ANTs: Seeing only the bad in a situation

  • Guilt-Beating ANTs: Thinking in words like should, must, ought, or have to

  • Labeling ANTs: Attaching a negative label to yourself or someone else

  • Fortune-Telling ANTs: Predicting the worst possible outcome for a situation with little or no evidence for it

  • Mind-Reading ANTs: Believing you know what other people are thinking even though they haven’t told you

  • If-Only and I’ll-Be-Happy-When ANTs: Arguing with the past and longing for the future

  • Blaming ANTs: Blaming someone else for your problems

- Ask yourself if the thought is true. Are you 100% sure it’s true?

- Ask yourself how you feel when you have the thought. Then ask how you would feel without

the thought.

Make ANT-killing a daily habit. Killing the ANTs takes practice. You can’t just do it once and think you’ve mastered your thinking patterns. When you make it a daily practice, you will feel freer, less anxious and depressed, and less trapped in past hurts or losses.

Source: Amen Clinics

Can You Retrain Your Brain?

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Steps to Changing Habits

Brain Healthy Lifestyles

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Brain Exercises

Research has shown that there are many ways you can hone your mental sharpness and help your brain stay healthy, no matter what age you are. Doing certain brain exercises to help boost your memory, concentration, and focus can make daily tasks quicker and easier to do and keep your brain sharp as you get older.

Evidence-based exercises that offer the best brain-boosting benefits.

Have fun with a jigsaw puzzle

When putting together a jigsaw puzzle, you have to look at different pieces and figure out where they fit within the larger picture. This can be a great way to challenge and exercise your brain.

Try your hand at cards

A quick card game can lead to greater brain volume in several regions of the brain and could improve memory and thinking skills.

Build your vocabulary

  • Keep a notebook with you when you read.
  • Write down one unfamiliar word, then look up the definition.
  • Try to use that word five times the next day.

Learn a new language

It’s never too late to reap the rewards of learning a new language. According to researchers, you can boost your memory and improve other mental functions by becoming a student of a new language at any time in your life.

Take a new route

Don’t get stuck in a rut when it comes to your daily tasks. Instead, be willing to try new ways to do the same things.

Choose a different route to get to work each week. Your brain can benefit from this simple change, and you might be surprised by how easy it is to change your thinking.

Source: Healthline

Happy Halloween

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Healthy Holiday Treats

Irving ISD Employee Assistance Program

Cigna Life Assistance Program Offers 3 free Counseling Sessions

Cignalap.com | 800-538-3543

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Employee Wellness Classes

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Join the Employee Wellness and Support Team for a special a six-part series designed to address the needs of educators during the pandemic. The series was launched by Project Restore, a TEA-sponsored program, and features topics like understanding trauma and building resilience.

Each session will be hosted virtually and offered several times. See the schedule below for more details.

Register on Strive

Part 1 has already been presented.

Part 2: Understanding Your Experiences & Building Resilience:

  • Wednesday, October 21
  • Thursday, October 22
  • Noon, 3:30 and 4:30 PM
  • Join the course on Zoom.

Passcode: 777

Part 3: Understanding Your Students’ Experiences:

  • Wednesday, October 28
  • Thursday, October 29
  • Noon, 3:30 and 4:30 PM
  • Join the course on Zoom.

Passcode: 777

Please note you do not have to attend the previous session(s) to attend the others.

Parts 4 through 6 will be presented in November.

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Support the Spread of Wellness

The task ahead of you is never as great as the power behind you.

Regardless of the difficulties we've suffered, we get to decide the person we want to become.

Think of the positive possibilities every day and allow them to strengthen your hope when you need it.

This pandemic has redefined the word “together” and as we continue this transition it will be redefined yet again. How will you help it mean something hopeful for your team?

Source: How to prepare yourself for a return to the office

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About Us

Our Employee Wellness and Support Services provides opportunities and resources for employees to develop and maintain healthy emotional, mental, and physical well-being through support and guidance, as well as promoting personal and professional productivity through educational engagement.

For more information about Employee Wellness and Support Services visit our website:

Employee Wellness and Support Services or contact Jose Villasenor, EWS Coordinator:

jovillasenor@irvingisd.net | 972-600-5217 Office | 469-781-1843 Mobile

Click here for


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Questions, Suggestions, Comments


Jose Villasenor


972-600-5217 O | 469-781-1843 M

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