Welcome to the New Normal: The average business professional has 30-100 projects on their plate, is interrupted 7x/hour, and unlocks their phone 110 times a day. We are pressured to ‘innovate or stagnate’ amidst constant change.
We’re bombarded with endless to-do lists at every turn—at home, on the job and especially in regard to our health. Eat plenty of kale, broccoli, quinoa and yogurt. Exercise 30 minutes a day. Get up and walk around every hour. Get plenty of sleep. Sometimes it can seem overwhelming. But there are some simple ways that can help you stay energized, nutritionally balanced and reduce your likelihood of developing diabetes.
The marketplace is flooded with articles, books and even phone apps trying to solve the question of what makes people happy. While happiness may seem like an esoteric concept, its origins are now being broken down to a science. Similarly, when it comes to employee engagement, figuring out what it takes to create a work place where employees are happy (and therefore more productive) has become a scientific pursuit of trying to find the right solutions. However, research shows that even with all the time, effort and dollars companies have spent to address employee engagement, the overall rates of employee satisfaction and happiness are still less than desirable.
Sustainable work spaces are becoming more prominent. Investing in sustainability benefits business, employees and the environment; it’s a win-win. By recognizing the value in sustainability, innovative companies can improve the health and well-being of their workforce—while supporting business goals.
In the past several decades, there has been a dramatic demographic shift in the workforce. Not only do women now make up almost half of the workforce, but there are more pregnant workers than ever before and they are working later into their pregnancies. According to the National Partnership for Women & Families, holding a job during pregnancy is more common than at any other time in history. In a recent survey, 61 percent of respondents reported being employed during pregnancy. More families depend on women’s income than ever before. According to the Pew Research Center, women are the primary or sole breadwinners in nearly 40 percent of families with children.
Do you have a “monkey mind?” This wonderfully colorful description describes someone who starts thinking about the challenges of the day ahead the moment they wake up—their mind racing through a list of have to’s, should have’s and why did I’s? As Entrepreneur points out, a restless mind can cause trouble sleeping, poor decision-making, anxiety and even depression—none of which helps us excel during a demanding day. A monkey mind distracts us from the task at hand, creating stress and impairing productivity.
Employers have enjoyed a substantial advantage in the labor market since the Great Recession began nearly seven years ago. At the peak of unemployment in 2009, there were roughly five unemployed workers per job opening, creating a buyer’s market in which businesses could afford to skimp on programs aimed at motivating and retaining workers. Of course employees would continue showing up for work; no one else was hiring.
There is an enormous payoff when employees bring their whole selves to work. A culture where employees are fully engaged drives productivity and performance. But what happens when stress, anxiety and lack of focus interfere with work?