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From Stressed to Refreshed: Wellness Wednesday in the Workplace

Workplace stress is at an all-time high. Fortunately, there's something business leaders can do about it. Discover some exciting solutions to combat stress at work, build a culture of self-care, and help employees achieve healthy lifestyles.

#Work-Life Balance
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A before and after of a stressed to a relaxed employee
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People experience stress for many different reasons. Sometimes, it's the result of a personal issue. Someone may be in a busy season trying to balance multiple priorities. For many people, the main source of stress impacting their healthy life is the workplace.

If you're noticing that your employees seem more stressed than ever, you're not alone. The good news is that you have the power to help them alleviate some of that stress and improve their physical and mental health. While work stress is often only one contributor to an employee's total load, having leaders who care about their well-being can go a long way in helping the people you work with lead happier, healthier lives.


Understanding workplace stress

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control defines workplace stress as harmful physical and emotional responses that happen when there is a mismatch between what the job requires and the capabilities, resources, and needs of the employee in that position. Unfortunately, 44% of global employees regularly experience workplace stress.

Workplace stress has serious negative impacts on the health equity of individual employees and the organization. When employees are stressed, they may lack clarity and motivation. This makes it challenging for them to maintain high levels of productivity. It can also lead to a decrease in employee well-being, which raises medical costs and leads to lost business opportunities and high turnover.

Employees who experience workplace stress are less engaged at work. According to Gallup, 41% of employees who report being stressed at work also report that they were not engaged when those feelings were happening; 56% report being actively disengaged when they are stressed at work.

If this becomes the culture of your company, the widespread disengagement and decreased productivity that follow can stop your organization from reaching its goals.

Sources of workplace stress are vast and varied. They can include:

  • Heavy workloads ๐Ÿ“š
  • Tight deadlines โฐ
  • Infrequent breaks
  • Job insecurity ๐Ÿ˜ฉ
  • Poor communication ๐Ÿ—ฏ๏ธ
  • Lack of work-life balance โš–๏ธ
  • Lack of support ๐Ÿ’ช
  • Interpersonal conflicts ๐Ÿ‘ฅ

While HR professionals and business leaders will never be able to eliminate every potential source of stress for all employees, they can take an active role in shaping a less stressful company culture. Some great places to start include:

  • Examining official company policies ๐Ÿ”
  • Surveying employees about the type of support they need โœ๏ธ
  • Training managers to better support and encourage employees ๐Ÿš€
  • Keeping an open door policy and embracing honest communication ๐Ÿšช
  • Becoming aware of the dangers of workplace stress and implementing a wellness program ๐Ÿง 

These are just a few of the ways HR professionals can begin addressing and mitigating workplace stress.


What is Wellness Wednesday?

One way to promote employee wellness and reduce workplace stress is to implement Wellness Wednesday in your organization. Wellness Wednesday is a dedicated day that aims to help employees combat midweek stress and increase their work-life balance by engaging in self-care during the workday. This could encompass anything from meditation time to having a coffee break to having employees explore their creative side.

Two out of five multinational employers believe their employees have experienced increased burnout in the past year. What have researchers identified as the main reason for this burnout? Half of employees say it's due to a lack of work-life balance.

For this reason, 47% of U.S. companies and 46% of non-U.S. companies are now implementing new or enhanced well-being benefits to attract and retain their workforce. This comes as research increasingly shows that companies investing in their employees' well-being attract qualified talent at a higher rate.

While Wellness Wednesday seems like a simple concept, it can have immense benefits for employees and for the organization. Many of the world's top employers have caught on to the concept and have created their own wellness programs to help their employees thrive.

For example, athletic shoe giant Nike provides meditation rooms for its employees to use during the workday. Every Friday from Memorial Day to Labor Day, the company shuts down at noon to allow their employees to start the weekend early. Financial tech company Intuit provides self-paced yoga and meditation sessions via a digital platform employees can access anytime.


How to plan your Wellness Wednesdays:

You don't have to run a multinational corporation to contribute to employee wellness. Here are a few practical tips to help companies of all sizes create a more positive culture and reduce workplace stress:

  • Use our wellness calendar to plan activities in advance. You don't want to add to an employee's stress level by making your Wellness Wednesday program chaotic.
  • Communicate effectively about the program and weekly events. Employees should understand the purpose, mental and physical health benefits, and goals of the program. They should also know well in advance what each weekly event will entail. Share Wellness Wednesday facts
  • Keep it interesting by offering a variety of activities at different times. It may be a good idea to survey your employees to ask what type of activities they would like to see at Wellness Wednesdays.
  • Avoid making wellness activities an obligation, as this can also contribute to employee stress. Respect an employee's decision if they choose not to participate.
  • Encourage managers and leaders to be an example for employees by participating in the weekly wellness sessions. When employees know their leaders value self-care, it may make them feel more comfortable engaging in the activities.

Although you may have the best of intentions, it's critical that you ask for regular feedback from your employees about your wellness program. You're doing this to help them achieve better work-life balance, so you want the program to be effective and support them in tangible ways. You also want to ensure it's sustainable and something that employees want to see embedded in the overall company culture.


Celebrate Wellness Wednesday with these team-building ideas:

1. Calm and Create

Studies show that creativity helps people de-stress and can even contribute to a longer life. This workshop contributes to employee wellness by combining healthy habits like meditation and yoga with watercolor painting and drawing. All it takes is a few basic art supplies and an inspiring instructor from Confetti to help your employees find peace within and get their creative ideas flowing.

How to get started ๐Ÿ‘‰ Give your employees some time to Calm and Create!
Virtual Calm and Create by Confetti


2. Yoga Class

The calm movements in yoga can not only help you improve your mood but also lead to a sharper mind and better memory. This makes a yoga class a natural choice for your Wellness Wednesday. Fortunately, it needs no materials โ€” just a knowledgeable instructor and employees who are ready to clear their minds, learn some yoga poses and breathing techniques, and relax with a little guided meditation.

If chair yoga classes are more your style, a Deskercise class is the perfect solution!

How to get started ๐Ÿ‘‰ Enjoy the flow in a Yoga Class!
Yoga Class


3. Wellness Elixir Making Class

Part of ensuring wellness is making sure you feed your body well. Empower your employees to meet their wellness goals with a Wellness Elixir Making Class. This will give them a chance to experiment with some plant-based superfoods and herbs.

We'll ship elixir kits to your team before the class, where a holistic health professional will teach them how to make a few drinks that fuel their wellness. They'll get to ask questions and enjoy some time bonding through self-care.

How to get started ๐Ÿ‘‰ Learn some recipes for well-being in a Wellness Elixir Making Class!
Wellness Elixir Making Class by Confetti


4. Candle Making Class

Aromatherapy has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, so why not experience these benefits with your employees? Send one of our candle-making kits to their doorstep. Then, they can join a live candle-making class with Confetti, where they'll learn how to prepare jars, blend fragrances, pour wax, and make custom-scented candles. The activity will help them activate their creativity. It will also give them something they can use to relax even more in the coming weeks.

How to get started ๐Ÿ‘‰ Light up the virtual office with a Candle Making Class!
Virtual Candle Making Class by Confetti


5. Sound Bath Meditation

Your employees' ears get bombarded during the workday as they engage in conversations and department meetings. Give them something calming to listen to with a guided sound bath meditation from Confetti. This activity combines meditation and breathwork with sound bath instruments to guide your employees into a state of relaxation. This can help them calm their minds and bodies as they prepare to take on the rest of the workweek.

How to get started ๐Ÿ‘‰ Immerse your team in the good vibes of a Sound Bath Meditation!
Virtual Sound Bath Meditation by Confetti


6. Cooking Classes

For some people, there's nothing more relaxing than sitting back and having a great meal. You can give your employees that opportunity by hosting a fun cooking class. To start, you can get your employees a kit from Confetti that allows them to cook a number of delectable options, including:

  • Pizza ๐Ÿ•
  • Dumplings ๐ŸฅŸ
  • Tacos ๐ŸŒฎ
  • Pasta ๐Ÿ
  • Paella ๐Ÿฅ˜

Don't forget to collect information on dietary preferences and accommodations so you don't leave anyone out. This activity is a great way for your employees to participate in a hands-on activity that's creative, fun, and pressure-free.

How to get started ๐Ÿ‘‰ Learn some new recipes in some Cooking Classes!
Cooking Classes by Confetti


Throw some Confetti on your Wellness Wednesday routine ๐ŸŽŠ

An organization that cares about its employees will understand the importance of helping them care for themselves. Though Wellness Wednesday can seem like a small gesture, it can have a big impact on employee well-being.

All it takes is a few simple activities to show your employees that they are your number one priority. When you invest in their health and happiness, you'll be rewarded with a more engaged and productive workforce that stands ready to help you achieve your goals.

Confetti makes planning your Wellness Wednesday ideas easy with Health & Wellness activities designed to enhance employee well-being.
Health & Wellness by Confetti
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