Tag Archives: workplace health

Top 5 – How to Let Go and Enjoy the Festivities While You Work

CrowdAre you careening  head long into the end of the year at warp speeds or are you spinning on the spot in a dizzying spin of deadlines?  Maybe you are heading gracefully to a gentle close or galloping to the post with style?

However you bring the year to a close the conflicting demands of deadlines and festivities are upon us and it can be difficult to navigate a balanced course through the final weeks of the year.  Do not fear Happening People come to your aid with our Top 5 – How to Let Go and Enjoy the Festivities While You Work

1. Tidy Up Loose Ends
As you launch into all the fun and festivities the years end brings it can be easy to get so caught up in the goings on that staying focused on what needs to be achieved can prove to be more difficult.  Use the final weeks of the year to work towards tidying up loose ends.   Ask your team to take a last look at their KPI’s, their Project Plans and Strategy Documents and formulate a plan that sees them achieving as much as possible.  Whilst it can be hard to focus members of your team at this point come the New Year you will be glad you did!

2. Think Resolutions and Goals
Now is the time to not only tidy up loose ends but to set goals for the New Year.  In December and January the word on everyone’s lips is resolutions and while it is important to consider what you would like to work on or improve on in the New Year, resolutions have a tendency to be one-week-wonder.  Goal setting is easy when you apply the frame work
SMARTAS: Specific, Measurable, Attractive, Realistic, Time Bound, Agreed and Stretching.  For more information on Goal setting click here Top 5 – To Mastering Goal Setting

3. Thank you’s
Thank you’s are so important, don’t let the year slip away without taking time to thank everyone who has helped and supported you through the year.  The list can be long and it’s not a list you want to leave anyone off who doesn’t deserve your heart felt gratitude, think about your family, your team, your boss, your assistant, clients, suppliers, other departments, the cleaning staff, the maintenance staff, the people who deliver your lunch, the coffee shop owners where you get your much needed morning coffee. Showing gratitude goes a long way to building powerful relationships.

4. Take Some Time Out
With the pressure of the new year’s tasks looming and under the weight of this year’s pressures its vital that you honour your, mental, physical and emotional states and take some time out to recharge the batteries.  It can be easy to quash the need for a break in favour of achieving more.  To easy feelings of tension of taking time away from the office, put plans into place that allow you time off without worrying that the organisation will crumble to its foundations without you (it probably won’t!!).  Having the time to rest and refuel your energy levels, expand your mind and let go of work pressures you can begin the new year refreshed and revitalised.

5. Think of Others
If you are able to leave the office for a well-deserved break consider those still working over the holiday period.  If you have a team try and put in place some treats and surprises which will make their working weeks a little more festive.   Think about allowing them to wear casual clothing or arrange a basket of special snacks, put a TV in the lunch room or leave some petty cash so they can order in lunch.  Whatever you can do to make this time special will be well received.

Happening People are focused all year long on organisations Health and Well Being, not just during the party season.  Our Happening Health Programs aim to give you and your team a balanced and holistic approach to bettering performance.  Call us on 1800 68 67 69 or visit our website www.HappeningPeople.com for more detailed information on our Happening Health Programs.


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Top 5 – How to Protect your Mental and Emotional Health at Work

With a slew of reality television shows focused on weight loss and a healthy lifestyle when we think health we often only consider our physical health and not our mental and emotional health.

The workplace is a melting pot of high stress situations, poorly managed tensions, disappearing resources  and hidden agendas and of course an abundance of politics.  Our emotional and mental wellbeing is put to the test repeatedly and we can become worn down.  When this occurs disaster strikes and we become unwell, sending us into a negative spiral.  But is it all doom and gloom?

With a little help from some brilliant minds on mental health we have pulled together our Top 5 on How to Protect your Mental and Emotional Health at Work.

1. Nourish good Relationships
Professor Jane Fisher, the Jean Hailes Professor of Women’s Health at Monash states “Close relationships are one of the most important protective factors for mental health…” says Prof Fisher. “Nourish good relationships, be committed to them, and get professional help to address destructive or negative relationships if necessary.”  Your work day is full of interactions, and relies on your ability to develop good and lasting relationships with a wide variety of people.  Focus on developing strong bonds with colleagues, they really understand what you are going through on a day-to-day basis and can act as a great listening post and support system.

2. Be Kind to Yourself
Sally Connolly, a clinical social worker, therapist and co-founder of Counselling Relationships Online.com suggests making a decision to do something nice for yourself every day and stick to it. “For many people it has to be a conscious process,” says Connolly. “They must take time to do it. I often recommend some simple ritual as a way of honouring themselves.” She recommends something as simple as daily meditation to inspire peace and relaxation. Other rituals might involve:
Planning to make your favourite dinner once a week, or getting to work 20 minutes early to enjoy a chat and a coffee with colleagues, maybe it’s about getting off the bus a couple of stops early and enjoying a stroll home on a Friday evening.

3. Laughter is the Best Medicine
Paul E. McGhee, Ph.D. is a pioneer in humour research and says “Your sense of humour is one of the most powerful tools you have to make certain that your daily mood and emotional state support good health.”  Physically laughter relaxes the whole body, laughter boosts the immune system, laughter triggers the release of endorphins and laughter protects the heart. Emotionally laughter dissolves distressing emotions, laughter helps you relax and recharge and humour shifts perspective. At work the benefits of laughter include allowing you to be more spontaneous, let go of defensiveness, release inhibitions allowing you to do your best work and it allows you to express your true feelings.

4. Never Stop Dreaming
Richard Branson Gazillionaire and entrepreneur “…. you need to take the opportunity to focus on the future. Finding time for aspirational thought is vital. … I spend time every day with my notebooks and iPad, thinking over new dreams and ideas.” Your work day can be filled with procedures, guidelines and protocols.  It can be hard to think outside the square with restrictions placed on our thoughts.  Daring to dream broadens the mind and ignites creativity which in turn boosts our confidence, reduces our stress levels and gives us hope.

5. Keep your Job
Building financial security will help protect your mental and emotional state at work.  When you know your financial future is secure it frees your mind of stress and tension that could otherwise jeopardise your health.  David Koch, presenter, finance Journalist and commentator  has been voted by his peers as one of the ten most influential people of all time in the Australian financial services industry he states “…. the increase in joblessness should prompt action to ensure your position at work is secure. Now is the time to make yourself indispensable by learning, increasing awareness of those around you and taking on a bigger role in everything you do.”

Happening People know that good Emotional and Mental Health as well as Physical Health are vital to your overall well-being and that of your team and organisation which is why we offer Happening Health a program aimed at helping organisations become employers of choice by offering a holistic approach to their employees’ wellbeing.  If you would like to know more or to book a session please call us on 1800 68 67 69 or check out our website www.happeningpeople.com

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Top 5 – Changes You Can Make in the Workplace to Improve Your Health

Healthy LifestyleFeeling tired and sluggish or finding it hard to make it to 3pm without raiding the office cookie jar?  Does your business suit feel a little too snug?

In one of our online surveys we found over 60% of people said the organisation they worked for offered Health programs to their staff.  It is encouraging to see so many organisations supporting their employees in the pursuit of a healthier mind and body in the workplace supporting studies which prove that a healthy employee is a productive employee.

We have long believed that organisations who nurture the holistic employee are not only see better productivity but are better able to attract and retain employees.

So along with our Corporate Training and Professional Development Programs our new Leadership Wellbeing Specialist – David Contarini – is on hand to get your organisation on the healthy track with programs aimed at improving your employees health and lifestyle.  In the meantime we offer you our Top 5 – Changes you can make in the workplace to improve your health.

1. Walking During Lunch
USATODAY.com revealed a study that confirms that doing something as simple as a brisk 30 minute walk during lunch breaks can boost weight loss. The study found that women who increased their activity level by an additional 3,500 steps a day lost 2.5 kgs during the year.  The study found that men who added an additional 3500 steps to their day lost over 4kgs per year. Walking is a suitable physical activity for most people as it is low impact and easy to do. Regular walking can help you not only lose body fat but it can help  maintain a healthy weight, improve your fitness and reduce your risk of developing conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and some cancers.   And keep you motivated in the afternoons.

2. Bring Your Own Lunch
Processed foods contain some of the highest levels of sodium and preservatives than any foods consumed in a normal diet. If you are regularly buying your lunch from restaurants, food courts or other kiosks, you are being exposed to these high levels of sodium which can total three times the daily recommended amount of sodium from one meal. Some other benefits include:
– Eating more nutritious meals as you can plan your lunch
– Less ‘binge’ eating as you can eat when you are hungry not when you are ‘famished’
– Increase in overall weight loss
– A decrease in the amount of bloating or water retention
– Less money spent on fast food = more money in your hip pocket

3. Stand Up
Stand every 30 minutes for a 10 minute break, this breaks fatigue, promotes blood and nutrients circulation.  A couple of tips to get you moving in the right direction;

  1. Rather than send an email. Walk to the other end of the office and talk to the person you are sending the email to.
  2. Take the stairs as often as you can throughout the day.
  3. Have a walking meeting

4. Drink Water
Water is essential for the human body. The body cannot store water and must have fresh supplies every day to perform virtually every metabolic process.  Most mature adults lose about 2.5–3 litres of water per day. Water loss may be more in hot weather and with prolonged exercise. Therefore it is vital to restore this water loss at work, by drinking at least 1 litre of water there per day.  If you work out doors you would need to drink much more than this to replenish water loss.

5. Get The office Involved
Many workplaces have fresh fruit on offer, the staff of Careflight Queensland cleverly bought a blender for the office and used any leftover fruit to blend into a healthy smoothie.

  1. Enter a work team for a beginner’s triathlon, or a Corporate Rowing or Dragon Boating Challenge.
  2. One IT organisation got together on a weekend and built a walking track around their office for lunch time use.

Happening People’s new Nourish Program delivered by our Leadership Wellness Specialist David Contarini helps employees to make better health choices – to improve their wellbeing and vitality through smarter eating and the uptake of exercise in order to make a meaningful difference to work and life.  It is an ‘easily digestible’ presentation filled with simple yet practical information about healthy which will educate, energise and engage the participants.

Our specialist Dave walks the talk, you will love him and he has made a big impact on us all here too!
For further information or to book a session call Happening People on 1800 68 67 69 or go to http://www.happeningpeople.com

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Australia’s Top Five Unhealthiest Habits

David Contarini is Happening People Work Place Human Health Specialist Consultant. His newest program Nourish is a presentation which helps employees to make better health choices – to improve their well-being and vitality through smarter eating and the uptake of exercise in order to make a meaningful difference to work and life. Below is just a taster of what you can expect from David when he presents at your organisation

Congratulations Australians take a bow, we are at the top of our game.

Unfortunately, for all the wrong reasons.  A report released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare reveals that, as a nation, we are fatter, lazier and unhealthier than ever before.

What does this mean for productivity in the workplace?  And what can you do about it?  If you sit in front of your computer screen most of the day then this blog by our workplace Health expert David Contarini gives you some food for thought.

Here is David & Happening People’s top 5 on improving your health:

  1. Less  Sugar
    The prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes is increasing.  Diabetes has more than doubled from 1.5 to 4.1 per cent in the last 20 years with the disease to become the number one health burden in Australia by 2030.  This debilitating metabolic condition is caused by insulin resistance – in other words, the body cannot transport sugar into the body cells because it doesn’t ’recognise’ it – so it stays in the bloodstream in high concentrations.  This can lead to blindness and kidney disease.  If you are concerned consult your GP.
  1. Move More
    We are doing less exercise.  Over the last decade the number of adults not getting enough exercise rose from 69 to 72 per cent with women less likely to exercise than men. In 2008, 69 per cent of men failed to get 30 minutes of moderate activity on most days of the week.  By contrast, 76 per cent of women didn’t get enough exercise.  Cultural norms are probably restricting exercise opportunities for women at the expense of raising children and general home duties.  The up-side is that women are in a strong position to positively influence the entire family by preparing healthy meals and reinforcing healthy habits in children.  Getting at least 30 minutes of continuous exercise at least 5 times a week will help you be more alert and productive at work.
  1. Up the fruit & veg
    We don’t eat a healthy diet.   An incredible 91 per cent of adults don’t eat at least five serves of vegetables everyday – up from 86 per cent four years earlier.  Forty-nine per cent of the population don’t eat two serves of fruit compared with 46 per cent less than a half a decade previously.  We live in a ‘food swap’ – food is every-where and ‘every – when’.  We are lucky enough in Australia to be exposed to fresh, wholesome fruits and vegetables year round so making better food selections is a matter of choice rather than availability.  Vegetables contain vital nutrients for wellbeing – eat them often.
  1. Watch the waist
    We are getting heavier. In 2008, 61 per cent of Australian adults were overweight or obese compared to 57 per cent in 1995 with men generally fatter than women.  This situation is a worldwide problem with its own name – ‘The Globalization of Illness ‘.  People in developed nations are eating the same, living the same and now we are dying in the same way.  Due to our obesity heart disease and strokes are still Australia’s principle cause of death.  A situation that is largely preventable through regular exercise and proper nutrition.
  1. Spread it around
    Our kids are getting heavier.  One in four children is now overweight or obese and for the first time in Australia’s modern history, are now dying from this condition prior to their parents.  This is perhaps the most alarming statistic to emerge over the last 10 years.  The reason? Our children are eating foods high in energy yet moving less than ever before.  We all play a critical role modelling healthy eating and lifestyle behaviours with our peers as well as our next generation.

So, what to do? Simple.  If you are sitting in front of a computer screen all day (let’s face it, most of us do) get 30 minutes of continual exercise at least 3-5 days per week, eat vegetables and fruits every day, limit sugar and saturated fat intake and drink at least a litre of water each day.  Remember, good health happens not by default but by design.

If you want to see your workplace with healthier, happier and more productive people who will live longer call Happening People 1800 68 67 69 www.HappeningPeople.com  as our health and well-being program can also improve your bottom line.

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