Our top 10 FREE workplace wellbeing tips
We all want to start our health and wellbeing journey in the workplace, but it is sometimes hard to know where to start and how to do it. In the past 2 years, we have met many prospects and clients who felt lost in the world of wellbeing, but mostly felt stuck because of the lack of budget and resources. And our answer to this is simple:
You do not need an extensive budget to start wellbeing initiatives (at the beginning)!
So here are our top 10 FREE workplace wellbeing tips you might want to start at work:
Encourage walking meetings Walking meetings are a great way to get away from the common stuffed meeting rooms. They enable team members to get some fresh air, exercise and have a better focus with less stress. You will be surprised how it can help your team members to make better decisions, quicker. If you are doing some brainstorming, or if you are trying to bounce ideas, walking meetings are a good go: you get creative when you move! We would recommend no more than 3 people in a walking meeting though, to make sure you can hear, see and interact with each other easily. For more content on the benefits of walking, you can read this great article in the Guardian.
Have Sleep-Friendly Initiatives Sleep is the most underrated health habit. We tend to push back the bed-time hour and wake up early to fit more into our days. However, we need a fair amount of sleep to feel good, perform and interact positively with others. Why not having a nap-space? It can just start with a meeting room booked on a specific slot for people to get some rest if needed. A short 20-minute nap can boost your team members’ alertness, performance and overall wellbeing. Another idea is a late-morning friendly policy: you might want to allow your team members to arrive late sometimes, promoting flexibility of working hours, and enabling them to be at their best when they are at work, not just physically present. Or maybe a duvet-day, allowing your team members to have one day a year where they can relax if needed?
Start a ‘no screen policy’ during meetings Our screens (laptops, phones, tablets…) interfere with our ‘real’ social interactions. How many times has someone looked at her / his screen while you were having a chat? For your team to focus and make better decisions during meetings, you might want to try a no-screen policy. It would enable your meetings to be shorter, straight to the point and efficient. It would also enable your people to disconnect from the screens for a little while and to reconnect with others, take notice and feel better! If you need to take notes and write reports, why not having one person using his / her screen only, and writing the action plan for everyone?
Practice Gratitude We have a biased brain that focuses on the negative things rather than the positive ones. Practicing gratitude daily helps us to shift that tendency and to see the positive in every situation. As a team or as an organisation, practicing gratitude can take the form of sharing your last happy moment with team members at the beginning of a meeting, sharing what you enjoyed during the week on Fridays or even implementing the 10-fingers gratitude exercise regularly, where people have to find and share 10 things they are grateful for, 1 per finger!
Empower your people Who has a passion that could benefit others? Starting your health and wellbeing programme does not have to be very costly. You have people in your organisation that might have passions you don’t know of. Ask around and see if they might be interested in running a workshop or session around their passion in the workplace. Your team members would feel valued, get the opportunity to share their passion and connect with others on a different level.
Create a list of healthy food options around your workplace Healthy eating is a key part of health and wellbeing, and you might want to make it easy for your team members. One way would be to create a list of healthy eating options available around your offices, along with directions towards these places, and – if you want to go one step further – a list of some of the healthy food choices that are available there. No time waste, healthy food, efficient power lunch, what else?
Start a weekly or monthly tea-time You might want your people to meet. Regularly. And know who is this person they see every morning in the elevator but never had a proper conversation with. Organising regular tea-time is a way for your team members to feel valued, meet each other and have a good time. You might want to do it weekly, on Fridays at 3pm for instance, or monthly, where you could invite all team members who have had their birthday this same month for example, so all of them can meet and share some tea and cakes!
Create a ‘Mindfulness Space’ It does not need to be complicated, fancy and expensive. Mindfulness is just taking notice, being in the present moment, nothing more. A mindfulness space is the opportunity for your team members to step back from their desk, relax and get energised. It can just start with a meeting room booked on a specific slot for ‘mindfulness time’ and shared on your social platforms so your team members know of it and everyone respects it.
Do and promote random acts of kindness: as simple as bringing coffee to one of your team members in the morning or complimenting someone’s new haircut. Being kind to someone, randomly, would bring a smile on this person’s face, make him / her feel valued, and make you feel great! Why not having a Kindness Day at work, where everyone should do something nice for someone else? World Kindness Day is every year on the 13 of November. Just saying!
Encourage stairwell use for team members traveling between 1 to 3 floors. You might want to provide posters for display in strategic locations (maybe to guide your team members towards the stairwells from the elevators lounge?). You might also want to use these posters to illustrate the health benefits of walking / climbing / exercising, especially for our heart. One sentence that we love is ‘BURN CALORIES, NOT CARBON’ after the company StepJockey. You might also want to try a stairwell challenge to launch this campaign, equipping teams with FitBits or equivalent, and the teams who walked the most steps in 1 week wins a prize!
Kindness is not lame, kindness is the new black!
If you manage to do all of these wellbeing initiatives, amazing! This is already such a good start to your health and wellbeing programme!
Would you like more free wellbeing tips to implement in your workplace? You can request the rest of the list via email (firstname.lastname@example.org)! And if you need any support or guidance, you know where to reach us!