Caring for Ourselves and Others - Mana Whānau

With the arrival of spring, we’re going to be embracing the value of Mana Whānau!

Aimée Sullivan
Creative Specialist
September 3, 2023

He aha te mea nui o te ao, he tangata, he tangata, he tangata.
What is the most important thing in the world? It is the people, it is the people, it is the people.

As the seasons change, we start to look at different ways to celebrate and express our values. At Aro Digital, we believe in looking to our values to shape our actions and foster a positive workplace culture.
With the arrival of spring, we’re going to be embracing the value of Mana Whānau, which encompasses friendship, community, trust, support, loyalty, communication, respect, kindness, and caring.

Mana Whānau is a value that speaks to human connection and the significance of our relationships, whether that’s at work, home, or play. In a world that can sometimes feel fast-paced and disconnected, nurturing the bonds of friendship and community can build a strong foundation for our fulfilment and mental health. 

Friendship: Strengthening The Ties That Bind

Friendship is a cornerstone of Mana Whānau. It reminds us of the importance of the friends we make along this journey called life!

Just like the sun brightens even the coldest Wellington day 😉, our friends bring light and joy into our lives. This season, take the time to cherish your friendships, whether through a simple chat, a shared meal, or a heartfelt message!

Community: Building A Stronger, Supportive Whole

Our sense of community is a reflection of our shared values and common goals. In the spirit of Mana Whānau, we can come together and support one another in our personal and professional efforts. We can reach out to neighbours, friends, colleagues, and wider community groups to see how we can help support, grow and nurture the place we live in. 

Trust: The Foundation of Every Relationship

Trust is the bedrock on which all relationships are built. As we embrace Mana Whānau, we try to  remember that trust is earned through not only our words, but our actions too. Being reliable, honest, and transparent in your interactions builds trust. Trust builds strong connections and enduring friendships.

Supporting Each Other: A Helping Hand In Times of Need

In times of challenge or adversity, the support of our whānau (family) and friends can be a lifeline. Mana Whānau reminds us of the power of being there for one another. Offer your support and lend a listening ear when someone needs it most. Together, we can overcome any obstacle.

Loyalty: Standing By Each Other's Side

Loyalty is a testament to our commitment to those we care about. In the spirit of Mana Whānau, let us be loyal friends and colleagues, unwavering in our support. Loyalty deepens the bonds of trust and respect that underpin our relationships.

Communication: Bridging the Gaps

Clear and open communication is essential for understanding one another. In embracing Mana Whānau, we will communicate with kindness and empathy. Take the time to listen actively and express your thoughts and feelings honestly. Effective communication nurtures understanding and connection.

Respect: Honouring Our Differences

Respect is the cornerstone of harmonious relationships. Each person is unique, with their own perspectives and experiences. You can embrace Mana Whānau by showing respect for these differences. Treat others with kindness and consideration, valuing their contributions and perspectives.

Kindness: A Small Act With A Big Impact

Kindness is a powerful force for good. This quarter, let us practice random acts of kindness, both within our workplace and in our wider community. Gestures of kindness, no matter how small, can have a ripple effect, brightening the lives of those around us.

Caring: Nurturing The Wellbeing Of Others

As we navigate the challenges of life, we can look for how we can extend a caring hand to those in need. Whether that’s through acts of service, offering a shoulder to lean on, or simply being there in times of joy and sorrow, caring for one another strengthens our bonds.

Here are a few easy ways you can embrace Mana Whānau just like us: 

  1. Stay connected: Regularly reach out to family and friends through messages, calls, or visits to maintain and strengthen your relationships. Why not buy a letter writing kit and write a letter to a friend? Minerva in Wellington has a great selection. 
  2. Active listening: Practice attentive and engaged listening in your conversations to demonstrate your interest in others. Small Steps has some great tips on how to practice your listening skills.
  3. Random acts of kindness: Surprise loved ones with small acts of kindness, showing your care and support. Random Acts of Kindness NZ have loads of fun ideas!!!!
  4. Open communication: Foster honest and open communication within your relationships, encouraging sharing and understanding. We love using the Emotional Culture Deck at Aro Digital to share our feelings, and navigate through sometimes difficult conversations.
  5. Respect and celebrate our differences: Embrace diversity and treat everyone with kindness and consideration, regardless of their background or perspective.
    Seek out art in your local area that’s made from a different perspective to yours. This could be theatre, poetry, music, visual arts - anything! This could be theatre, poetry, music, visual arts - anything! If you're in Wellington, check out the Pōneke Arts Listings Newsletter for events near you.
    Afterwards, write down five new discoveries you made during your experience that you haven’t considered before. 

These five tips can serve as a foundation for nurturing the values of friendship, community, trust, support, loyalty, communication, respect, kindness, and caring in your daily life.

Here is how some of our team are embracing Mana Whānau this spring:

Nicole - HR and Finance Manager

“This time of the year can be challenging and people can tend to feel a bit run down after winter. I’m planning on getting out and about with my kids to make the most of the longer days and connect with family. To keep it interesting my daughter and I have been having lots of fun trying different healthy and comforting recipes. I’m also very passionate about wellness for my Aro family and will be making the most of the extra daylight to plan some fun outings.”

Kyle - Performance Specialist 

“I will be making sure I am proactive in keeping in contact with my overseas family. This can be quite hard to do being so far away. I will also be making sure I am present in the moment for everyone I engage with, so they do not feel dismissed.”

Paras - Performance Specialist

“This spring, I am committed to strengthening the bonds within my whānau, whether that be my immediate family or a broader community of loved ones. I will cherish the time spent together by sharing stories and laughter.”

Ruth - Performance Specialist

“I’ll be making the absolute most of having beautiful weather and long evenings to spend more time with my friends & whānau. Spending time in the mountains & beaches surrounding Ōtautahi is my favourite way to connect with loved ones.”

At its heart, Mana Whānau is a value that calls us to celebrate human connection. It reminds us that, above all else, it is the people in our lives that matter most. As we embrace this value, let us strive to build and nurture our friendships, support our community, and create a culture rooted in kindness.

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