Brandi Heather

Return To Play: Personal and Professional Mental Health and Wellness, Inclusion and Innovation
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Brandi Heather shares 25 years of education, experience, and research in every presentation. From college professor to CEO, she inspires creative, informative and humorous solutions for today’s ever-changing workplace. She specializes in promoting workplace mental health and wellness, inclusion, engagement and stress reduction by utilizing the serious science of play.

Brandi spent 20 years as a college professor in Kinesiology and Sport Studies, specializing in disability inclusion, accessibility, and therapeutic play. She holds a Master’s Degree in Physical Education, A BEd in Special Education, a Diversity and Inclusion Certificate from Cornell University and Advanced Certification in Play Therapy. As a four-time nominee for the Alberta Women’s Entrepreneurship Award, and winner of the Women of Excellence Award, she is committed to building organizations where people want to be.

Brandi demystifies play so you can use this powerful science-based tool in your personal and professional life. Her one-of-a-kind presentations and workshops share her personal journey as an educator, business owner, and as a person living with mental illness as proof that the solution is always in play.

In Brandi’s best-selling book Return To Play: Rebuilding Resilience, Risk and Reconnection she shares some of the most impactful reasons why you should add more play into your personal and professional life and workplace right now.

Brandi will show you how to use humour, humility and creativity to navigate change, challenge and growth.

Programs By Brandi Heather

The estimated cost of poor mental health in Canadian workplaces is at least $50 billion dollars annually and the number of workers unable to work due to poor mental health is $500,000 /week (Mental Health Commission Canada, 2021). Brandi Heather’s humorous and engaging talk demonstrates a clear connection between how people feel at work and building a workplace where people want to be. Brandi shares the parallels between her journey as a woman living with mental illness and building a healthy, resilient workplace culture. This keynote will leave you laughing and informed about how poor mental health, chronic stress, and anxiety can have on your personal and professional performance and what to do about it. Discover that when we address mental health, we simultaneously address engagement, productivity, retention, and recruitment – mental health and wellness is a thread in everything we want for our businesses, schools and communities. Brandi’s high-energy, high-impact keynote leaves the audience with actionable strategies and inspirational discussions that last long after your event ends.
This workshop will provide you with inspiring and strategic tools for creating workplace environments that ignite belonging, innovation and growth. When people feel overwhelmed, vulnerable and anxious they are less likely to connect, collaborate and come up with innovative ideas and solutions. Brandi leads you through three eye-opening steps to help you to promote inclusion and innovation in your organization: Brave Me: How to uncover the diverse strengths and talents of people the people we work with and for Brave Us: How to share those strengths and talents with others and consider different perspectives. Brave Business: Discover how the the first two steps affect customer service, retention and recruitment This energizing workshop is full of ah-ha moments and practical ways to get your team moving together creatively.
Work can be hard, don’t forget to play! Play is Brandi Heather’s signature strategy for thriving personally and professionally. Our skills for fearless determination, curiosity, and resilience are skills first learned “in play”. Play is not silliness, it’s science. Play is as variable as people themselves. Find out how being “in play” can: Reduce chronic stress and burnout Ignite your imagination and creativity Make you laugh Improve your mental and physical wellness Reduce turnover Improve retention Discover what it means for you and your team to be “in play” now and in the future. Let Therapeutic Play and Inclusion Specialist Brandi Heather help get you in the game and “in play”.
The world is ready to get back “in play”, reenergized, reconnected, and resilient. What we want most for our students is what we first need to give our educators and staff, EVERYTHING flows through them! If we want our students to feel this: • Cared for • Competent to make their own decisions and learning strategies • Courageous enough to try new things, fall down and get back up • Collaborative and safe to communicate their needs and their voice • Creative enough to imagine outside their wildest expectations then we need to also give this back to the people who practice and heal them every day. This keynote addresses the power of play to improve the mental and physical health of educators and healthcare professionals starting from the inside out. In this high-impact, inspiring keynote educators identify and utilize their play strengths and personalities to: • RECOGNIZE the barriers to feeling cared for, competent, courageous, collaborative and creative in education • IDENTIFY methods for connecting their play strengths and personalities to a practice that supports both the student’s and the practitioner’s physical, social and emotional needs. • ILLUSTRATE the connection between being “in play” and workplace culture, wellness, communication and collaboration. • ILLUSTRATE that play is a foundational part of mental health and self care for educators. Brandi infuses every word with her captivating personality, experience as an educator and humour that leaves the audience inspired and empowered to return to play. Play cannot exist in fear, it is one of our greatest tools for healing and igniting the extraordinary potential of every person.

What Clients Say About Brandi Heather

Books By Brandi Heather

Return To Play: Rebuilding Resilience, Risk and Reconnection

Can play be the answer to some of our most significant and complex social challenges of the 21st century? This book reveals that the return to play creates a common ground to share hopes and fears, vulnerability and strength. Play gives us the inspiration and courage to confront, "what do we do when no one has the answer?" It gives us the creative certainty to build solutions to seemingly insurmountable issues and asks us to brave connection in the face of fear. Join me on this journey as I show you that play is worth risking a little of yourself to become more yourself in the process. "Play is a willingness to not win and still be ok with the journey, that's what it is for me" New York Times Best Seller Seth Godin personal communication "If we rehabilitate play, we might simultaneously resurrect our ability to get along and trust each other" New York Times Best Selling Author Daniel Pink - personal communication “What Brandi touches is magic! A book that the world has awaited for the longest time. Now is the time to play, if not now, then when?” Susanne Mueller, “Take it from the Ironwoman” (Podcaster, author) Executive Coaching & Consulting, New York & Switzerland

Brandi Heather Photo Gallery

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