Why is wellness important?
Wellness is foundational. Your life and your career are built upon this foundation. When you are in a state of wellness, your productivity increases as does the quality of your work product and the work product of the rest of your team. Wellness is contagious. It sets off a virtuous cycle. As your wellness improves, so does that of the people you work and live with, and their wellness impacts yours and so on. But, just as you would not build a house upon a weak foundation, you don’t want to build your life and career on a weak one either.
Why does wellness include more than just me and what I do?
Wellness is Inclusive. The fact of the matter is, we don’t live or work alone. We are parts of many groups that live and work together. For example: families, communities, professions, teams, associations, work groups, or firms. All of the people around us are part of our surrounding environment—even opposing counsel, as well as the people who work for us and the people who work with us. Their well-being impacts yours—just as yours impacts theirs. To bring this point home, I often start talks about wellness with these three questions:
“Have you ever had a colleague drink themselves to death?” “I have.”
“Have you ever had a colleague commit suicide?” “I have.”
“Have you ever had a colleague have a complete mental breakdown?” “I have.”
And, I worked in the relatively low stress environment of a federal agency. Our whole office was impacted by these tragic events, however only one of those colleagues was a lawyer. In terms of how we were all affected, it didn’t matter. We were all part of the same team, and they were our friends and colleagues. We were all impacted. We grieved. Our work was disrupted, and the team stopped functioning. We had to change, adapt and adjust. We had to deal with whether we were part of the problem and how we could be part of the solution.
Wellness programs should include the entire staff. Your personal wellness program should include taking care of the people around you, and as a result they will take care of you.
We all know that we carry our work and home worries, stresses and problems back and forth every day just as if we packed them in our briefcases or backpacks. What happens in the office impacts our after-hours life and vice versa. A contentious phone conversation can disrupt sleep. A failed deal can result in drinking to excess. Spilled coffee can elicit a harsh comment. A friend of mine recently changed jobs from a firm where the culture could only be described as toxic to another firm with a wellness culture. When I asked him how the transition was going, he told me that his wife and children recently commented that now they actually looked forward to him coming home at the end of the day! He attributed that to how calm and relaxed he was when he got home which allowed him to engage more positively with his family.
How can I add wellness into my already over-scheduled life?
You can incorporate wellness practices in your daily life in just minutes each day.
Wellness Activities that Take Less than 5 Minutes a Day:
–Standing up and stretching at your desk for 1 minute
–Instead of emailing your colleague walk over and talk to them
–Use an App like Calm for 1 minute a day to clear your head
–Use a RESSETT Card that will positively focus your energies. Available at: https://www.ressetstudio.com/
–Take the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator
–Drink water (all day long if you can)
–End every day by thinking of 3 things you are grateful for that day
Wellness Activities in 10 Minutes or Less per Day:
–Write someone you know a thank you email or, better yet, a handwritten thank you note
–Read a book or magazine you enjoy for fun
–Go outside and take a short walk
–Connect with someone by having a conversation not about work
–Order a coffee that doesn’t come loaded with sugars
–Buy something small for yourself or someone else to brighten up the day
–Bring fruit or nuts to work to snack on
These activities are a good start down the path to wellness. There are more ways that wellness can be incorporated into your life. One of the things that personal and career development coaches work with their clients on is how to incorporate more wellness into their daily life. If you want more information about how coaching can improve your life, email Rosemary@partnerupcoaching.com