Portrait of meditating partners sitting on desks with their legs crossed in office

5 Reasons Mindfulness Improves Employee Well-being

Portrait of meditating partners sitting on desks with their legs crossed in office

Traditional wellness programs typically don’t address stress, resiliency and mental well-being. As we transition from education and awareness (mindfulness) during April Stress Awareness Month to May Mental Health Awareness Month, it’s important to provide a continuum of learning on how to help organizations and employees better manage stress and get proper training.

Stress is the leading cost of illness, costing U.S. businesses a staggering $300 BILLION/year in turnover, absenteeism, productivity and medical costs! 

Top businesses and forward thinking employee well-being program administrators are incorporating a not so traditional training approach and are seeing reductions in employee stress, workplace conflicts, injuries, absenteeism and healthcare costs – Mindfulness.

Mindfulness (also referred to as resilience training or brain training) is attention and awareness training used to reduce stress, focus attention and optimally perform in the present moment.

Or as I like to coach – Mindfulness is the difference between being able to “respond vs. emotionally react.”

Employees are seeking tools and healthy ways to cope with stress at work and at home. If your team or organization hasn’t yet incorporated Mindfulness Training as part of your Leadership and/or Employee Well-being Training initiatives, here are

5 Reasons (Bottom Line Benefits) to Start A Total Well-being Training Approach Today:

  1. Mindfulness training reduces stress, anxiety and depression while improving the immune system and the cognitive skills that are key to high performance and compassionate care giving.
  2. Mindfulness training improves chronic stress-related conditions, strengthens the immune system, lowers blood pressure and improves heart health.
  3. Mindfulness training helps people develop healthier eating and drinking habits, which helps aid weight loss and treatment of eating disorders.
  4. Mindfulness training boosts happiness, mood and energy levels. Happier healthier employees thrive at work and tend to be the highest performers.
  5. Mindfulness training improves sleep quality and reduces insomnia, helping people ditch sleep medication and thrive after a good night’s rest.

For more information on how to incorporate Mindfulness & Resilience Training at your workplace, contact us at wellness@cairnstone.com.

multasking woman

Try This One Thing To Manage Workplace Stress

multasking woman

As we continue our education and workplace health promotion in support of April Stress Awareness Month, it’s important to get back to basics, slow down, take a deep breath and pause. A recent New York Times article summed it up well, “As much as people would like to believe otherwise, humans have finite neural resources that are depleted every time we switch between tasks. That’s why you feel tired at the end of the day. You’ve used them all up.”

That’s why the simple practice of Monotasking beats Multitasking every time and can decrease stress and increase performance and energy! Changing this one work habit can be a game (and life) changer!

Monotask: To do one thing at a time.

Research continues to grow suggesting that the hurried, busyness of thought that multitasking is the way to get more done is NOT where it’s at! Say what??

Hard to believe for those of us that are wired with type-A behaviors to go full speed ahead and do as many things as we can in an attempt to get as much done as possible! Deep breath…………………ahhhh.

A growing body of evidence shows that multitasking actually makes us less efficient, less effective, less focused, more stressed AND more prone to making mistakes! Makes sense when you pause and slow down to think about it, huh?

“Multitasking makes the little information we do take in when we’re multitasking more difficult to remember at a later stage”, reports Psychology Today.

Maintaining focus and interest on one task at a time isn’t always easy, but like meditation and mindful living (and working), it’s so worth it! When we are mindful and 100% focused and present with one task, we can flow through to the next with more ease and efficiency and much less stress. Although Monotasking is not the same as mindfulness, being more mindful (cultivating awareness, and focusing on the here and now), Monotasking allows us to pay attention to, and complete, one task at a time more effectively.

So, start today and practice being more mindful as you tackle your tasks and projects – one task and one project at a time. Slow down and pay attention to how you feel as you become more present. Just like any other healthy habit, to achieve overall well-being and inspired living, it’s a practice.  As a recovering multi-tasker and work in progress myself, I promise you’ll feel and live better.

For more information on how to incorporate stress management training as part of your Employee Wellness initiatives, contact us at wellness@cairnstone.com.

 

 

 

Stress Awareness Month

5 Strategies to De-Stress & Improve Employee Well-being

Stress Awareness Month

Stress Happens. It’s a part of life and a part of most workplaces. We may not be able to control stressors at work (or at home) but we can control how we respond and manage our stress. 

In honor of April National Stress Awareness Month and as part of our employee health promotion initiatives, here are 5 Strategies to Help Your Employees Manage and Reduce Stress, thus increasing overall health and well-being:

  1. STOP & SLOW DOWN – Unplug and Be More Present & Mindful 
  2. RELAX DAILY – Take 5 and Recharge by simply getting still or outdoors with nature
  3. LET IT GO! – Release negative, unhealthy thoughts & behaviors
  4. PRIORITIZE SLEEP & REST – Promote this under-rated healthy habit & take a 10 minute rest
  5. SEEK SUPPORT – Release the stigma and encourage utilization of EAP & support resoures

We know that long-term stress can lead to a wide range of preventable illnesses—from headaches to stomach disorders to obesity and depression—and can even increase the risk of serious conditions like stroke and heart disease. These preventable chronic conditions not only cost employers in increased health care costs, but in absenteeism and reduced productivity. Healthy employees are happier employees and their health is your company’s greatest wealth.

Understanding the mind-stress-health (mind-body) connection can help better manage stress and improve health and well-being.

Dis-Ease = Disease

When we help employees understand the importance of self-care and taking time to practice the five healthy behaviors listed above, we can help create healthy habits for a lifetime.

Each of us are responsible for our own health and as leaders in your organization, it’s critical to lead by healthy examples, such as slowing down to be more present and mindful with colleagues, taking PTO, seeking support and utilizing EAP benefits and encouraging unplugging and rest when away from the office.

For a fun workplace wellness challenge, try encouraging your employees to track their sleep (7-8 hour nightly goal), participate in a self-care activity weekly, attend a Yoga class or practice slowing down and being more mindful (2 Minute Mindfulness Breaks Daily Challenge).

Cheers to letting go of stress being a true well-being champion!

For more information on how to help your employees manage stress or enhance your employee well-being initiatives, contact us at wellness@cairnstone.com.