June is National Employee Wellness Month, which makes it a great time to discover workday habits that boost your wellness–and can even boost the wellness of your whole organization. Challenge yourself to try one of the healthy habits listed below this month. You might experience better focus, less fatigue, increased productivity, teamwork, collaboration, work-life satisfaction, and a healthier self too!
TRY WALKING MEETINGS
If you can walk while you meet, you can create healthy energy from the movement, as well as fresh inspiration and a new perspective from the change of scenery. Nilofer Merchant, who says in a 3-minute TED Talk, that when executives and employees walk side-by-side, the hierarchical boundaries are virtually eliminated. Good for your body and for business!
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF WORKPLACE FITNESS PROGRAMS
If your workplace offers on-site fitness classes, meditation groups, or stretch breaks, be sure to join the fun! If there are no official programs, start one of your own! Stand at your desk, walk the perimeter of your building once or twice a day, or take stretch breaks with friends. You’ll be amazed at the difference that even a small amount of added daily activity can add to your wellness and daily outlook.
HOST A HEALTHY POTLUCK
Invite your colleagues to bring a healthy dish to share. Before you know it you’ll be swapping recipes–and smiles! If your first potluck is fun, consider doing them more often. When it comes to healthy lunches–the more the merrier!
ENGAGE IN FRIENDLY COMPETITION
If you think fantasy football is fun, try something closer to the real thing! Challenge colleagues to a friendly race, a walkathon to benefit a cause, or even a simple beach ball game. It may feel silly at first but the activity, extra energy, and friendly interaction are well worth the effort!
Work can be all about repeated tasks–from stacking boxes to typing on a computer. Over time, the repetition can lead to soreness and joint issues. Ergonomics, the study of fitting a job or workspace to a person, can help you arrange your physical workspace in ways that lessens repetitive stress and helps keep your body well.
Start by checking that your desk and chair are a suitable height for you and that your computer and other frequently-used tools are within easy reach. If you’re not sure where to start this article from The Mayo Clinic can get you started.
HELP CREATE A CULTURE OF WELLNESS
If your workplace has a wellness committee, see if you can be a part of it. If not, start the fun on your own. Make it a habit to bring healthy snacks to meetings, take wellness breaks to breathe or meditate, support colleagues when they’re taking great care of their health, and promote opportunities where you or your co-workers can take advantage of a self-care wellness moment. When wellness becomes a regular topic of conversation, it’s easier to collaborate on projects and small changes toward a healthier workspace.
OBSERVE SOS TO STRESS DAY ON JUNE 30TH
In a recent study, 72% of those asked reported experiencing excessive or uncomfortable levels of stress in their daily lives. If you can relate, consider taking this day to learn some new strategies for lowering your stress and boosting your wellness. Start small by reading an article, taking a stress test, or simply unplugging for the day. If you discover something you like, explore it further, experiment with new stress-relief practices (like monthly massages!) and enjoy the physical and emotional benefits.
ESTABLISH HEALTHY WFH HABITS
If working from home allows you a bit more flexibility than working in the office, ask yourself this: are you using that freedom to benefit your wellness or are you actually missing out on wellness opportunities you’d have in a traditional office? The answer might surprise you.
If you find your work-life seeping into your personal life in ways you find taxing, consider setting boundaries and committing to breaks.
Work only in a designated part of your home and make it as ergonomic as possible. Make it a priority to set and stick to your work hours, and include breaks where you get up and move or enjoy healthy snacks in the house. Last, but certainly not least, make it a habit to have social conversations with your colleagues when the opportunity arises. It will help you feel more connected to the people in your work life and support collaboration and teamwork during the day.
SCHEDULE WELLNESS HAPPY HOURS
Whether you come home to a busy family or to the temptation to veg out until bedtime, it can be difficult to find motivation for the wellness activities you enjoy in the hours after work. Scheduling regular workouts, meditation sessions, or a series of massages right after work can help you avoid inertia and get more of the things that make you feel great. Go ahead, book an appointment today. Your body–and your stress level–will thank you!
TIP: If massages are your idea after-work wellness ritual, consider a membership with an Elements Massage(R) studio. With more than 250 locations across the country, you can keep your habit–and the benefits!--every month of the year!
Change can feel difficult, but remember, you don’t have to do it alone. You have friends, colleagues and wellness pros, like your massage therapist, who are interested in wellness too. Talk with them about steps you’d like to take toward wellness. Make plans together and share your results. It’s so much more fun with a friend–or even a team–to celebrate the wins along the way. Sharing this article can be a great way to get the conversation going.