Typically, people choose to participate in Dry January—a month without booze—after a holiday season of overconsumption. But this New Year, Dry January comes after not just a couple of months of above-average drinking, but nearly a full year.
The change of seasons may be a little bit harder to recognize this year. In many areas, the kids aren’t going back to school full-time. Traditional events like Halloween and Thanksgiving may look quite different. Football season is opening to empty stadiums.
Yet, fall is happening, nevertheless. The air will get crisp, the leaves will change, and the coffees and candles will be pumpkin spiced.
Summer is here! Although, if you hadn’t noticed the change of seasons, you’re hardly alone. Time has been difficult to track this year. With mandatory stay-at-home orders, school closings, and the cancellation of seasonal events, these past few months have felt unmoored from the calendar’s customary flow.
With all that’s going on in the world, it may be more difficult than ever to engage your employees in wellness challenges. But it’s worth persisting: Wellness challenges can help your employees take their minds off the troubling times we live in and recharge for whatever lies ahead. The key is to choose challenges that represent the six dimensions of wellbeing: emotional, financial, occupational, social, physical, and purpose.
Here are six of our favorite summer wellness challenges. Each of these activities can be done from home while social distancing.
June is National Employee Wellness Month, and what a strange month it will be. Typically, this time of year is all about finally getting out of doors after a long winter and rainy spring. It’s about going on weekend trips and family vacations for some much-deserved rest and relaxation. Summer is, usually, the season of wellness.
This year is different. Workplaces have been closed for months. Access to gyms, parks, and beaches has been restricted. Even as some businesses and public facilities reopen, people are anxious about going out again—a full 15% of Americans indicated on a May 26 Statista poll that they were afraid to leave their house. Many are fretting about the economic toll the COVID-19 pandemic has taken on their families while also worrying about the virus itself. Indeed, as of April, the lion’s share of Americans are either very or somewhat concerned about the virus.
Emotionally, your employees are on edge. Physically, they’re worn out. Is now even the right time to celebrate wellness in the workplace?
Sometimes, wellness is easy.
When the weather is balmy and there’s a breeze in the air, it’s a joy to get outside and go for a walk or a bike ride, to have more walking meetings, and to find extra opportunities to get moving.
When the temperature falls to single digits, and the sidewalks are a mess of slush, snow, and ice? Getting outside gets a lot less appealing.
Fortunately, we have some great ways to keep employees moving throughout the winter months.
Tag! You’re it!
As a kid, those words were the signal to run like the wind, as your friends scattered across the playground, clambering up the monkey bars and dancing just out of your reach.
At no point during this activity did you stop and wonder how many calories you had burned.
Play can be transformative, making almost any activity more enjoyable and helping the time pass much more quickly. And if you want your corporate wellness program (and your wellness challenge ideas) to be more enjoyable for employees, why not incorporate a sense of play into it?
The Exxon Valdez disaster. Nine Mile Island. The Challenger explosion. Chernobyl.
Sleep deprivation has been linked to each of these disasters, as well as many more.
When lives are on the line, sleep deprivation can result in deadly mistakes. But even if your employees handle reports instead of reactors, sleep deprivation can do a number on their health and their job performance.
According to Gallup CEO Jim Clifton, “The single biggest decision you make in your job—bigger than all the rest—is who you name manager.” And for good reason.
Managers today account for 70% of the variance in employee engagement, with good managers having the ability to improve morale, increase productivity, and improve performance. In addition, a well-trained manager knows how to mobilize their employees and leverage employee strengths to meet company goals.
It makes sense, then, that developing these great managers should be a top priority for every company. And one of the best tools for doing so may be an unexpected one: their corporate wellness program.
From baby bunnies to budding daffodils, spring is the time of renewal. Unfortunately, spring is also often the time when the motivation to keep up with New Year’s resolutions starts to fade and employees begin to slip back into old, unhealthy habits.
But it doesn’t have to be that way.
Every company deserves to reap the benefits of having a wellness program that produces happier, healthier, more engaged employees. But many of these companies may be shying away from implementing a wellness program, thinking that costly wellness incentives are the only way for a program to be successful. After all, employees aren’t going to participate unless they’re getting impressive rewards in return, right?
As it turns out, it’s possible to have a wellness program with exciting, sought-after incentives that don’t break the bank.