How to Encourage Wellness in the Workplace

Image Credit: Navy Medicine; Brazilian Air Evacuation Nurses Keeping Fit

Efforts to improve wellness in the workplace are on the rise, with exercise initiatives and nutritious snack alternatives installed to produce healthier employees. Above all else, it’s important to promote wellbeing in the workplace – as healthy workers are happier and generally have higher levels of productivity.

The first step to creating a healthier work environment is to promote healthy eating. Providing a fridge is an essential part of office design, since this allows employees to make and bring in their own healthy meals – being beneficial to both their wellbeing and finances. Additionally, a simple yet effective way to encourage healthy eating is to place a fruit bowl in a communal area and keep it topped up – this way, employees have easy access to nourishing snacks. It’s also a good idea to replace any vending machines containing sugary drinks and snacks with healthier alternatives. Healthy eating is one of the more simple ways to integrate healthy living in the workplace, and is essential in preventing loss in productivity and tired workers.

Physical exercise is equally as important as healthy eating, and should particularly be encouraged in offices with desks, since employees tend to spend a large proportion of their time sitting down. This is not only detrimental to health, but a lack of exercise can also negatively impact the business since employees are likely to be less productive. A great way to encourage exercise is to provide employees with free gym memberships as an incentive or reward. Not only will this promote physical health, but your employees are more likely to strive to produce their best work. Alternatively, to give everybody a chance to get involved, why not hire a fitness instructor or yoga teacher? Regular fitness sessions allow employees to get away from their desks for an hour and dedicate time to their physical wellness. For something with lower impact, walking office meetings are a great way to get everybody moving, whilst still getting their work done.

Mental health is something that has been given higher levels of recognition in recent years, with initiatives being taken to raise awareness of its importance. The workplace is, just as likely as any other environment, to contribute towards mental health issues; especially if employees feel stressed. Mindfulness is a popular practice that highlights the importance of paying attention to the body and surroundings. It’s a great idea to consider mindfulness training in the workplace as it’s been shown to reduce levels of stress and anxiety. Alternatively, if your employees prefer to be more active, consider meditative activities such as yoga. You could also organise weekly reflection time or a meditation course to promote mental wellbeing, or provide an on-site counsellor for employees to visit, should they so wish.

There are many ways in which employee wellness can be promoted and encouraged in the workplace, but informing employees of the importance of this is a good place to start. For advice on how you can make your workplace a healthier one, please do get in touch with us via email [email protected] or call 01386 751740.