Posts Tagged ‘Wellness Tips’

Mental Health Month

Friday, May 18th, 2018

May is Mental Health Month and every year Mental Health Ireland supports the See Change’s Green Ribbon Campaign.  The international symbol for mental health awareness, the green ribbon campaign promotes positive mental health along with initiatives and supports.  There are numerous events taking place around the country with the main focus on the Talk & Walk initiative which in partnership with the IFA, Coilte, SeeChange and Mental Health Ireland are organised walks encouraging people to take a break go for a walk and talk!

A list of walks and events available here.

We all go through difficult episodes throughout our lives, and we all have different ways of dealing with the emotions and feelings associated with those events. Many people live with a mental health illness that is kept hidden for fear of stigma or discrimination. Recent campaigns including this months Green Ribbon are trying to change how we view mental health and encourage people to seek help. We have no issue with getting regular check ups at the dentist and doctor.  Mental health should be no different, we need to keep it checked too.

Often it’s the little things that can have an enormous impact.  Here are some little reminders to help in times of need.

Mental Health Month

 

Mental Health Month

 

Mental Health Month

 

You can order printed poster and postcard packs at HealthPromotion.ie.  Having posters displayed in the workplace promoting awareness will encourage employees to be more open and share their issues with you if there is a culture of openness and honesty.

 Ingrid O’Sullivan, Operations Manager, Voltedge Management

The Lunch “Break”

Monday, February 19th, 2018

 

How do your employees spend their lunch breaks? At their desks clogging up keyboards with crumbs, catching up on the headlines, emails and working? Sound familiar? It’s not really what a lunch “break” is supposed to be.

Back in the day when the Internet, let alone computers, didn’t exist or at least sit on everyone’s desks it was very common for people to go home for their lunch. Yikes, imagine taking the time to go home, eat a meal, maybe catch up on a few things in the house, chat to anyone else who was home for lunch and then go back to work feeling like you’ve had a real break ready to tackle the afternoon shift.

And if it wasn’t home you were going to it was certainly to a canteen, café or quite possibly the pub for an hour.  Nowadays employees might still get out, but it is most likely to pick up a takeaway, run errands and tick things off their never-ending to-do lists. Doesn’t sound like much of a “break”!

Research by Subway has shown that 58% of Ireland’s population is taking less than 30 minutes for lunch during the working day. Shockingly, only 15% of workers here are taking the full hour for their lunch break.

So, what can employers do to help their employees take a real break and come back to their desks feeling energised, productive and motivated for the afternoon, which quite possibly will stretch into the evening?

 Get them to leave their desks! 

“No-eating” at the Desk Policy

Have a “no-eat” at the desk policy, providing of course you have an alternative space for employees to go and eat.  This will promote social engagement and interaction with colleagues which turn will promote the sharing of information, ideas and issues that otherwise are not nurtured or vocalised.  Often the best ideas come from a “water cooler” chat rather than the boardroom.

Lunch Byte Sessions

A great way to get employees engaging and away from their work stations is to provide Lunch Byte Sessions. Run a series of one-hour modules on self-development topics such as How to be successful, Personal Branding, Body Language or Wellbeing. Or invite the employees themselves to do a presentation on a day in the life of Me.  Often referred to as Brown Bag lunches, the employer provides the food, which is an added incentive to attend.

10-Minute Walk

Encourage your employees to get some fresh air, even if it is a ten-minute trot around the block. Unplugging for those ten minutes and having head space alone or a chat with a colleague along with that burst of energy is a great stress-buster. Incentivise them to clock up “foot miles” which can be used to redeem a voucher, a free lunch or even towards time off.

Power Nap

Have you a quiet space where your employees can take a power nap? We all know tired people can be grumpy, irritable and unproductive!  It is proven that a quick 15-20-minute nap during the day can have huge benefits.  It will increase concentration and memory performance, making employees more productive, reducing stress levels and improving moods. In many countries such as Spain, Italy, Japan and China afternoon naps are a normal part of the daily culture.

We are recognising and understanding that the fast pace of our 24/7 always on lives can take its toll on our wellbeing. Employers have a duty of care to mind their employees.  It’s a win-win initiative, as happy, engaged, awake employees are far more productive and motivated.

It’s not called a Lunch “Break” for no reason!

 

 Ingrid O’Sullivan, Operations Manager

Top Tips on How to Tackle January

Monday, January 22nd, 2018

The good news is we are nearly through January! However, there is of course still time to put those new regimes in place, the ones that sounded so easy and self-fulfilling after another portion of turkey and stuffing and that last mince pie.

Dry January, juicing, detoxing, superfoods, the gym, life coaching, restructuring… the list of things we are all supposed to suddenly be doing on the 1st of January, many of which we simply are not able to, is endless.  Yes, there is no doubt it’s the time of the year to do a bit of thinking and reassessment of our selves and our lives but putting on too much pressure will simply cause the pressure cooker to explode, and that’s not going to make this time of the year any easier!

Top Tip – Always have a fruit nearby

You come back to work on Monday to a zillion emails and the decorations still up! A quick declutter of the glitter can be refreshing and working from the top down on the what seems like an endless list of emails soon can purge into a manageable workload. Your next item on the list should be filling the office biscuit tin with fruit.

Top Tip –  Get moving

Battle the wind and rain and commute to work on your bike. Shift the excesses from Christmas and clear the cobwebs from your mind.  Whatever you do – walk, cycle, run, skip – getting out in the fresh and if you can during daylight hours – it will help you feel energised and less guilty hitting the couch in the evening.

Top Tip – Make plans

In order to make January more bearable, start planning. Whether it’s family and friend gatherings, birthdays, anniversaries, work events, holidays, having something to look forward to is such a positive feeling! It doesn’t have to be anything big or expensive but knowing you have something in the diary, even if it’s a cup of coffee with a pal on a Saturday morning can help you get through the week.  It’s also a great way of focusing and managing time. So get that calendar out of the wrapper, you’ll be surprised at how quickly it gets filled up. And, make sure to plan some downtime too.

Top Tip – Make Me Time

Embrace the long days, the dreary weather instead of letting it get you down. No better excuse then to spend time at home, catching up on those jobs that never get done but provide an immense sense of achievement once they are.  And of course catching up on reading, movies, Netflix, long telephone calls, cooking nice meals, one on one time with your beloved ones. So what if you end up still in your PJs at the end of Saturday, do it and enjoy it!

Top Tip – Be honest with yourself

It’s easy to be overwhelmed and to make unreasonable and often irrational promises to yourself.  There are big issues that need addressing in all our lives, some more urgent and life changing than others. Use January as a time to rationalise them, make realistic plans that can be carried out and maintained. There’s a whole year ahead so don’t panic, keep the pressure on low to medium!

According to Forbes only 8% of people who make New Year’s resolutions will complete them. Be one of the 92% who do by knowing what is truly achievable.

Happy New Year and best of luck in 2018 from everybody at Voltedge Management!

Ingrid O’Sullivan, Operations Manager