Wellness Programs – a key component to managing stress and improving quality of life

by Amy Weitzel

Amy_Weitzel_cropped.JPGIt’s interesting how if someone were to go skiing, fall and break their leg, we would never expect them to stand back up and continue skiing down the hill. At work the next day, if their work productivity slowed, supervisors would be more understanding saying, “John fell down and broke his leg. It’s OK.”

But if John were to have broken up with his girlfriend the night before, the same supervisor may not be as understanding with John’s slowed productivity due to a broken heart.

By some estimates, 60-80 percent of doctor’s visits likely have a stress-related component. Stress affects everyone and can be the result of work or home-related stressors. As much as we’d like to leave home at home and work at work, the truth is that it’s impossible. We will often carry our home stress with us to work and work stress with us back to home.

This is why more and more businesses and organizations are embracing Wellness Programs. Wellness Programs can help employees combat stress, become more resilient, and learn techniques to improve depression and anxiety.

On June 8, WELLTALKS will bring together experts across the Grand Valley to talk about wellness in today’s organization.   Attendees can take advantage of this exciting opportunity and learn how to put together new Well Programs within organizations or strengthen existing programs. This half-day symposium will feature six Ted Talk style speakers, panel discussions, local vendors, and provide a healthy breakfast.

I get to work with wellness coordinators all the time who are putting together comprehensive programs that address the whole employee: physical and mental. Every employee is different. Some are facing health-related issues while others want to return to a physical condition that allows them to enjoy life more fully. Some employees are facing life challenges such as divorce or the death of a loved one, while others want to learn better communication skills.

I’ve watched both large and small organizations across the Grand Valley offer programs of varying sizes in both size of scope and in size in budget. Wellness Programs don’t have to break the bank to be effective – being well rounded and having a good understanding of what employees’ needs are can be just as effective as a large program. A strong Wellness Program is going to be well-rounded and embrace physical and mental aspects of a person’s life.

And here’s the most significant part: organizations who invest in Wellness Programs for their employees, end up investing in their own return on investment as well. Wellness Programs have proven to help increase retention, reduce absenteeism, increase engagement and power productivity – all good for the bottom line

The WELLTALKS symposium will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Mesa County Business Center, 512 29 1/2 Road.   In addition to panel discussions with speakers, the symposium will offer access to leading wellness vendors to answer questions and offer support. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door and include a catered breakfast and a morning of learning and fun. Tickets can be purchased here.

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