Mental Health Awareness Week: Brighton boss Hope Powell reveals her strategy to improve mental health

26 May 2022 | 08:36 | Football

As part of Mental Health Awareness Week, Brighton and Hove Albion’s Hope Powell talks about her mental health and well-being as a football manager, revealing her coping mechanisms and how people have since become a player How has perception of this changed.

Powell, who joined Brighton and Hove Albion in 2017, has previously managed the women’s Olympic teams in England and Great Britain. After an exciting career and into management, she talks about coping with work stress.

she told sky sports news: “It’s an amazing job, but it’s just what I do. And I also realize it’s important to get rid of it and do something else, which I do. I find it easy, actually, and always It must be done in all fairness.

This moment is very important to me. But, you know, there were other things that were more important to me at that moment. So, I chose those moments when I left football. You know, making football secondary and everything else is a priority. “

In 1998, Powell was appointed the first full-time national coach of the England women’s team. She is also the first female and youngest England coach.

Hope Powell coached the England women's team a few years ago
Powell to coach England women’s football

Asked how she handles the highs of winning and the lows of losing, the first-team manager said: “Winning on Sunday, coming in on Monday, the environment is very different.

“I think you lose and you manage it. I’m not happy to lose. I don’t like it. I want to win. But I have to stop. I learn from it, learn from it, and then we go.

“I think it’s very important to your well-being. I have to post it as a point. It doesn’t mean I don’t have time. You know, we could have done better and so on, but there was one thing I had to let go place.”

At the age of 19, Powell began her coaching qualifications and in 2003 became the first woman to receive a UEFA professional license – the highest coaching award.

2003 Became the first woman to receive a UEFA Pro license
In 2003, Powell became the first woman to receive a UEFA Pro license

Powell led England to the quarter-finals of Euro 2005 and the final of Euro 2009. As a player, she made 66 appearances for England, mostly as an attacking midfielder, scoring 35 goals.

Asked about some of the pressures in the women’s game, she said: “We’re seeing more managers and coaches being fired in the women’s game and that’s not good for anyone. I’ve been through it, but that’s the reality. .

“With that comes the pressure, the anticipation, the disappointment. I think you have to really learn to manage yourself in all of those areas, it’s not easy, but it often comes with experience.”

Powell coached England for 15 years, leading them to two World Cups and four European Championships.

Asked how the pressure has changed from managing a national team to a club team, she said: “In a domestic program, it’s a game every week. There’s the pressure to succeed every week, and internationally it’s that kind of pressure. Probably once a month. The biggest pressure internationally is in the game. So, there is absolute pressure on both. Just at different times.

“When I got into domestic football, I felt like I was in a constant game because there was a game every week and it was like wow, there was no respite. Internationally, you have every month One game and you can handle that pressure. You have three weeks to decompress.”

Brighton and Hove Albion head coach Hope Powell during the 2021 FA Women's Premier League match at Kings Meadow
Powell looks on at WSL game

Mental Health Awareness Week is an opportunity for people to talk openly about all aspects of mental health and to offer advice and help for health.

Explaining how much consciousness has changed, Powell said: Years ago when I was a player or first on this journey [it was] Never talked about it. Not at all. As a manager, it didn’t even occur to me that someone would be struggling for whatever reason. Just never got into the equation.

But now it’s very open and I think the real benefit of the game now is that you have health staff who take care of players and staff, mental health, you have mental health days and everyone is really noticing it.

So I don’t actually remember what the turning point was and when it was. But now people, players, staff are comfortable saying, ‘Look, I’m not having a good time, I need some support, I need some help’.

“No one’s going to be surprised to admit something like this, it’s probably very personal, but everyone is happy to do it. I think it’s a testament to how the game is going right now.”

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