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Real Talks

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The Real Talks with SOSAD Ireland well-being series empowers people to live happier, healthier and more successful lives.  


The series features exclusive videos, podcasts and articles with Performance and Well-being coach Alan O’Mara, along with Rory O’Connor, Leanne Kiernan and David Balfe. 

Scroll down, search ‘Real Talks’ on whatever podcast platform you prefer or subscribe by clicking on any of the below. 

Section 1 - Learning from Leaders

Rory O’Connor, Leanne Kiernan and David Balfe share important life lessons and explore various aspects of mental health and well-being. They offer incredible insights into their own challenges and key learnings in hope that it will help others.

A real talk with Rory O’Connor (aka Rory’s Stories)

A real talk with Leanne Kiernan (Liverpool and Ireland footballer)

A real talk with David Balfe (aka For Those I Love)

You can also listen to the full conversations by searching for ‘Real Talks’ on whatever podcast platform you prefer. 

Section 2 - Mental Skills Masterclasses

In this section, Alan O’Mara breaks down key mental skills that can help you to live a happier, healthier and more successful life. Alan O’Mara is the founder of Real Talks, a former Cavan GAA player, an author and a performance and wellbeing coach with sports and business leaders around the world. 

In the videos below, Alan explains why mental skills are important and how you can develop them through strategic and consistent practice.

1. Self-Awareness

Want to develop self-awareness? Journaling is recommended to people, teams and organizations that want to develop self-awareness. You don’t have to be a brilliant writer! Each day you journal, take 5 deep breaths and write down the first 5 thoughts that come to your mind - no matter how important or trivial they seem. At the end of each week, reflect back on your thoughts, feelings and actions and see how you feel about the words you put on paper. The ability to see yourself clearly and objectively will become stronger the more you practice taking a minute to reflect. 

Learn more about self-awareness by reading Alan O’Mara’s Irish independent well-being column.

2. Resilience

Want to develop resilience? One of the best ways to develop resilience is through reflection. Reflection helps us to look into our past to find experiences, evidence and clues that can guide us in the present and future. Take 5 deep breaths and think about when you were resilient during a difficult time. What did you do that helped you cope or get through that challenge? Maybe it was sharing problems with friends or family or going for a walk or a run. Perhaps it was seeking support from a mental health professional or being more self-compassionate. Everyone deals with adversity in different ways at different times. Figuring out what works for you will help develop resilience.

Learn more about resilience by reading Alan O’Mara’s Irish independent well-being column.

3. Self-Compassion

Want to develop self-compassion? We all make mistakes and experience challenging times, so it is important to be kind to ourselves when dealing with adversity. Think of a time you failed recently and how you spoke to yourself. Now think about how you would respond to a friend who had failed in the exact same way? Many of us find it easier to be kinder to others than we do to ourselves. When experiencing failure or hardship, try to speak to yourself as you would to a friend.

4. Authenticity

Want to develop authenticity? Try to become aware of differences between your actions and your beliefs. If you catch yourself making a remark or sharing an opinion that doesn’t feel right, ask yourself whether you really believe the words you speak? Do you say things that don’t actually match your values, or that are racist, sexist, or otherwise hurtful? Are you just saying these things because someone else taught you to, or because it’s something you heard growing up? If we want to be more authentic, we have to notice and address the discrepancies between our beliefs and our actions.

5. Growth Mindset 

Want to develop a growth mindset? Try something new! Challenge yourself to try something that you’re not already good at. Maybe it is a thing that you have been meaning to do for a while, but never quite got around to - like reading a book, doing a puzzle or going to a new place. The goal isn’t to be brilliant, just to do something you’ve been wanting to do. And to try to do it a few times. Fear of failure often holds us back but getting out of the comfort zone in small and manageable ways consistently can help develop a growth mindset. 

To download Real Talks with SOSAD Ireland well-being posters free of charge, please click below:

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