I’ve always been a work hard, play hard kind of girl. Sometimes though, I must admit, I feel that the scales tip a bit more into the “work hard” category and I have to remember the importance of taking time for myself. It’s not only about making time for relaxing and having fun, but it’s good for my health.
A recent survey from GuideSpark found a big disconnect between wellness programs and employee participation. You can read more about their findings here. I think this is going to be a real challenge for both employers and employees – staying motivated and engaged with wellness. As a result, companies are really looking for creative ways to help employees develop healthy habits.
One thing I’ve been fortunate enough to build into my routine is my treadmill desk. It allows me to be productive and heart-healthy at the same time. But I know that won’t work for everyone. So I’ve included a few great resources that you may find helpful:
The Wellness Project NYC has created what I’d call a virtual boot camp – regular email reminders for employees to help them stay on track and motivated, especially where their eating habits are concerned. I test drove the program for a week and particularly enjoyed the reminders to drink all of my water (as an example). They also provide resources and tips to human resources pros to help them administer the program.
Another company focused on helping employees develop good habits – this time in the exercise area – is EveryMove@Work. It’s a fitness community to encourage people to stay active. The work program allows companies to create custom challenges that employees can participate in. I had the chance to hear from one of their beta participants, Ambassador Health, about the results they’ve seen. Kara Russell, corporate director of health, wellness and safety said the company has seen a boost in team morale upon implementing team challenges.
While some programs focus on eating and others on activity, wellness also extends to other areas – like our eyes. I recently discovered an iPhone/iPad app called “Vision Test”, which does what you would expect – a vision test. While I’m not sure we’re ready to give up the eye doctor, I found the idea fascinating.
If part of your 2015 goals include a corporate wellness program, you should download the new SHRM Foundation report “Evaluating Worksite Wellness: Practical Applications for Employers”. This report provides a step-by-step guide for organizations to evaluate their existing wellness programs. I particularly liked the section of the report that addresses cost-benefit analysis and return-on-investment.
In addition, check out these two reports. Aflac’s 2014 WorkForces Report offers data about health insurance, employee benefits, and the trends impacting the workplace. And Blue Goji’s Consumer Health and Wellness Index offers insight into people’s health and wellness resolutions for 2015. I thought both reports provided interesting information about how people are thinking when it comes to their overall health.
Next month (February) is National Heart Healthy Month. According to the Centers for Disease Control, cardiovascular disease (CVD)—including heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure—is the number one killer of women and men in the United States. It’s also the leading cause of disability, preventing Americans from working and enjoying family activities, as well as costing the United States over $300 billion each year from the cost of health care services, medications and lost productivity.
What are you doing to stay committed to your wellness goals?
Image courtesy of Sharlyn Lauby