I am thrilled to introduce Talya Rabinovitz, a clinical psychologist with a passion for helping people avoid overwhelm and stress so they can be their best selves at work.

In this blog she will be sharing 3 top tips and the psychology behind them so you know not only WHAT works but WHY!

As a Clinical Psychologist, I was thrilled to sit down with Krystyna from How To Accelerate Learning and unearth the deeper psychology that explains the success of her programs for L&D professionals. If you care about understanding how to create psychological safety so that your L&D initiatives are more effective and engaging, here are 3 things Krystyna is doing that you can borrow…

(And if you need any convincing of the power of psychological safety, consider that it was identified as the number one predictor of team performance in a study conducted by Google).

  1. Keep It Playful 

Play is often dismissed as a “waste of time,” but actually, it can be very effective in regulating our nervous systems. Why do we care about that? Because the more regulated our nervous systems are, the more we stay in our highest brain, where we can problem-solve, collaborate and learn most efficiently and enjoyably. Krystyna weaves play throughout her workshops, whether it’s through a simple game or exercise  – she’s even created The Learning Loop, a game that help L&D professionals learn how to maximize learning. With regards to play it may be seen as childish by some and actually what Krystyna encourages is a child-like approach to learning – maximising curiosity and engagement.

Hot Tip: What can you do to make your programs more fun and playful? 

  1. Pay Attention To Emotional Expressions

Psychologists know to watch our clients very carefully for signs that they aren’t feeling comfortable. This is a great way to get a sense of their internal experience and whether they are in their highest brain, or dysregulated in a fight, flight, or freeze mode. Krystyna is also finely tuned to the emotional states of participants in her training. A perfect example includes watching how people react to being told they need to take part in an “icebreaker” at the beginning of a new program. Noticing the visible discomfort this causes, Krystyna has come up with more enticing and engaging ways of building new relationships and groups, rather than just following a typical formula. She endeavours to make it a much more ‘natural’ experience rather than the ‘forced fun’ of an icebreaker; welcoming people in as they arrive and encouraging them to greet each other and explore the room. There may even be some simple activities to get their curiosity peaked.

Hot Tip: Pay attention to the emotional expression of the people you’re training. Don’t be afraid to test our new approaches that seem more aligned with your audience’s needs. 

  1. Be Mindful Of Your Own Nervous System 

Our nervous systems are finely tuned to pick up how the people we are with are feeling. Think about how you might have withdrawn when you’ve felt your colleague is stressed or arced up, ready for conflict, when you’ve sensed your partner is in a bad mood. We’re wired to connect with each other and that means we are highly sensitive to the state of each other’s nervous systems. Krystyna is intuitively aware that how she is in the room, affects how her participants feel during her training. This is highlighted, as she speaks in a melodic voice and maintains a relaxed, open posture – signs to our nervous system, that someone is safe and it’s ok to get closer to them. This not only feels better to be around, but it also makes it easier for us to learn, as we stay in our most evolved, higher brains.

Hot Tip: Pay attention to how fast you speak and the rhythm of your voice. Play around with your pitch, volume, and speed, aiming for a more melodic, relaxed tone.

To find out how you can increase psychological safety in your work, so that productivity and engagement increase, book a 30 min strategy session with Clinical Psychologist, Talya Rabinovitz at hello@talyarabinovitz.com. You can also download some helpful resources from my website


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