By Lauren Smith
In case you’re wondering, what does Friends have to do with being safe at work? I’ll get to that…
October is Canada’s Healthy Workplace Month
To celebrate, my employer is promoting a wellness challenge for the entire month. Each week we’re challenged to do something to improve our wellness under four different themes:
- Being Well (Oct. 6-10) – Physical health (healthy lifestyles, physical activity, etc.)
- Feeling Well (Oct. 13-17) – Mental wellness (stress management, emotional well-being, mental health, etc.)
- Eating Well (Oct. 20-24) – Healthy diet (balanced meals, proper nutrition, etc.)
- Connecting Well (Oct. 27-31) – Fulfilling relationships (connecting with others, volunteering, giving back, etc.)
For last week’s Feeling Well challenge, I took some time for myself to de-stress and relax with one of my favourite past times: curling up on the couch in front of the TV—in the name of wellness, of course!
So, what does this have to do with being safe at work?
Being healthy and well reaps so many benefits, and one of them is safety! Research has shown there are many links between workplace safety and health/wellness. For example:
(from Occupational Health & Safety magazine)
- Stress contributes to high blood pressure, which can result in poor decision-making and increased errors.
- Inadequate sleep and fatigue also directly reduces concentration and the ability to work safely, even for employees in non-physical jobs.
- Obesity is one of the major contributors to back injuries because overweight people often have difficulty using good body mechanics when moving and lifting objects.
What you do outside of work affects your performance at work and can impact how safe you are on the job. Maintaining a lifestyle that incorporates health and wellness ensures you aren’t distracted, or at greater risk, for potential dangers that could arise on the job.
Remember: it’s all about balance
Wellness is about getting a mix of all the good stuff.
It’s important to make time for a little physical activity in your week, plan for healthy/balanced meals and make sure you get enough shuteye at night. But also find time in your week to enjoy your favourite hobbies and activities (like watching TV), and connect with people in your life.
Taking care of yourself and allowing time to decompress and do something you find relaxing helps to rejuvenate and feel refreshed for work the next day.
So make sure to look after your body and mind, cultivate relationships and take time for yourself. And most importantly:
Work smart. Work safe. And work well.
What are your favourite ways to promote wellness in your life? Tweet us @HeadsUpAB.