There is a growing recognition of the importance of physical and mental ‘wellbeing’ in the workplace, and outside it. Broadly speaking, ‘wellbeing’ relates to the way in which we experience and perceive our lives, and whether or not we feel good about ourselves and the choices we are making. Staff who recognise the importance of safeguarding their own mental and physical wellbeing, and who are supported in doing so by their employers/managers, are likely to be more productive at work and contribute more to the organisations they work for.
More and more businesses are recognising the importance of employee wellbeing and as businesses begin to fashion wellbeing programmes, this awareness is now helping shape their content.
(Guest blog by Paul Barrett, Head of Wellbeing at the Bank Workers Charity.)
The inability to relax and enjoy free time outside work can contribute significantly to stress and issues with mental health. A 2015 report from consultancy firm Lansons found that 34% of people admit they are too tired to enjoy life outside of work because of the pressures of their jobs.
Employers of all sizes and industry sectors can take steps to becoming a ‘healthy workplace’ – a place where healthy choices are facilitated – using the principles of the Workplace Wellbeing Charter. (Guest blog by Anna Brown, Healthy Workplace Advisor at Hammersmith & Fulham Council.)
Employee burnout is when an employee feels physically and mentally exhausted as a result of prolonged stress at work. As there is currently no widely accepted tool to measure burnout, it can be difficult to categorise, but is generally recognised as ‘a state of vital exhaustion’.
We all know that eating better makes our bodies healthier, but it also makes us feel emotionally well and less tired – things we could all do with feeling at work, and things that are beneficial for our physical and mental health. And it’s easier than you think. With a little planning, you can combine cooking healthy evening meals at home with your lunch preparation – making you feel organised, fulfilled and motivated at work the next day.
(Guest blog by Kaye Jackson, Senior Business Development Manager for Let’s Get Cooking CIC.)
The five steps to wellbeing were developed by the New Economics Foundation in 2008, and can help give you some ideas on how to improve your wellbeing, and the wellbeing of others. Evidence suggests that making small improvements to wellbeing can decrease some mental health problems and help people to flourish.
Fit for Work offers free, online work-related health advice and guidance to anyone looking for advice and support about an existing case of sickness absence, or about issues that may result in sickness absence. Employed people who have been off work due to illness for four weeks or more can be referred for a telephone assessment with a Fit for Work case manager in order to identify all the obstacles preventing the person from returning to work. The Fit for Work case manager can also provide recommendations about how the obstacles can be addressed and to potentially enable an early return to work. Visit the Fit for Work website or call the free telephone advice line on 0800 032 6235 (English) or 0800 032 6233 (Welsh). There is a separate service running in Scotland (0800 019 2211).