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Our members are the local governments of Massachusetts and their elected and appointed leadership.
The Massachusetts Municipal Human Resources association focused on the importance of finding humor, hope and fun during difficult times during its annual holiday meeting on Dec. 17.
Renowned humorist and stress management expert Loretta LaRoche kicked off the virtual meeting with a discussion about how to “stress less with humor and optimism.”
LaRoche guided participants through a conversation about how to use humor to transform negativity and unhappiness into a more optimistic outlook. She encouraged participants to use fun as an antidote to stress and allow themselves to laugh at the absurdities that arise in everyday life.
Steven Bernstein of AllOneHealth led a discussion about how human resources professionals can support both employees and themselves during times of stress. He encouraged participants to acknowledge the stress that human resources managers take on as a result of feeling responsible for supporting employees while simultaneously coping with the sense of loss that we’re all feeling in the wake of the pandemic.
Bernstein provided a number of tips for managing personal stress, including practicing mindfulness and developing a “playlist” of feel-good quotes, songs and videos to use as an “escape-plan” during moments of crisis.
MMA Legislative Director John Roberston provided a legislative update covering labor and personnel-related bills that the MMA has been tracking this year, including the pending police reform bill. Robertson also responded to questions about a possible extension to the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and an extension of the 960-hour work waiver for retirees.
The meeting concluded with a series of breakout groups, where participants discussed what they felt hopeful for going into 2021 and had some fun playing holiday trivia.
More than 85 human resources professionals attended the virtual meeting, which took place during the first big snowstorm of the season (but did not need to be postponed due to the weather!).