The idea of ‘wellness days’ is certainly not a new concept, though team-building days may have been more well-known over the history of staff programs. However, the true impact of wellness days and schemes is really only just being realised, as employers gain understanding of how they tackle staff stress and go on to aid their business.
Between 2015-16, there were over 488,000 reported cases of work related stress, and the total number of working days lost was 11.7 million.
Some chief causes of these stresses included workload pressures, tight deadlines, and a lack of managerial support. However, there are many other factors that cause work related stress, including anxiety or depression, and in order to create a wholesome and productive company, you need to have healthy and happy employees.
Wellness days offer a comprehensive, strategically designed investment in employees’ mental, physical and social health. And it pays off. All over the world, wellness days have been used to chip away at healthcare costs and decrease the amount of time taken off work. Healthy employees cost you less since they are more likely to stay with your company, so investing in corporate wellness can positively influence both your business and the lives of your employees.
Smart employers are placing corporate wellbeing at the heart of their companies, and listed below are the twenty of the most popular activities for wellness days, which you can click on to find out more details:
Top Twenty Wellness Day Ideas & Activities:
- Survey Your Staff
- On Site Chair Massage
- The Power of Puppies
- Dance Classes
- Indian Head Massage
- Scribble the Stress Away…
- Yoga and Pilates
- Mindfulness and Meditation
- Hire a Smoothie Bike
- Get Moving!
- Healthy Park Picnic with Games
- 'Menu For You'
- Nutritional Advice Activities
- Cooking Classes
- Lunchbox Boosts
- Have a Laugh!
- Wellness Kiosk
- Stress Management Sessions
- Get arty
Wellness days are a great time to survey your staff, in order to assess how happy your employees are, as well as work out new and exciting ways they would like to create healthy habits for in and around work. This can be in terms of their general wellbeing, and the efficiency of the company. Maintaining consistent communication with your staff shows openness for improvement, and creates a mutual feeling of value and respect within your company. If your staff feel that they are an essential part of the team, they are likely to give back more. This is an extremely valuable way to achieve productive work environments, so by surveying your staff, you can identify any issues, and collaborate to find the best solution as well as finding new and exciting healthy suggestions to keep staff fit and motivated. There are some great free online survey tools such as Survey Monkey enabling you to produce a customise survey for your company.
Health related questions can be quite broad, but work-oriented questions will vary around your principle business goals; below are four topics that have repeatedly cropped up as some of the main productivity preventions that you can include in your questionnaire:
There is not a one-size fits all approach to creating a productive environment, however by inquiring into the preferences of your staff, you may be able to find a happy medium. Some thrive in a busy, sociable workspace, however it could be useful to create a distraction free zone in which your employees can function without interruption. You may also want to consider decorative mood boosters such as green plants, natural light and an allowance to personalise workstations (within reason).
Balancing work and personal life can be hugely demanding, and with rigid or unreasonable schedules, it becomes almost impossible. By enabling variable work times, it takes pressure off employees, allowing them the option to finish work off at home (e.g. if your employees clock in early, they may leave early). More than a third of small business employees stated that flexible schedules would increase happiness and alleviate burnout. It displays a feeling of trust towards your team, and once clear guidelines are agreed, your company can focus more on work, and less on worry.
Time should never be wasted, and many office workers find lengthy group meetings unhelpful. Consult your staff about the best way to move forward, whether this be commencing one-to-one meetings, implementing a suggestion box, or keeping group meetings short and regular. Surveys allow an opportunity for everyone to voice their opinions and concerns, and give your employees a sense of control within the company.
Nowadays, technology is at the forefront of our lives, and although this allows companies to progress and become more efficient, it becomes harder for employees to switch off. This is a major causes of stress and new research shows that it’s a productivity killer. To minimise this, label urgent emails, being mindful of how quickly you need a response, and encourage your employees to ignore distractions, writing a memo and coming back to it later. Noting down daily responsibilities allows your mind to focus on the task at hand. Urge your staff to take short breaks during the day, and organise regular wellness events to keep everyone mindful of their health and happiness.
On-Site Chair Massage (also known as Seated or Accupressure Massage) is one of the most popular corporate treatments provided on wellbeing days. Due to its practical implementation, it can be offered in a variety of environments. It can be carried out in almost any setting using the specially designed portable chair; hassle free and unobtrusive, there are no oils or creams used during the treatment, and it is administered over clothing.
Chair massages have numerous benefits and is used by companies nationally to reduce stress levels among their employees. Office Massages have been shown to relieve eyestrain, headaches, reduce RSI, as well as relax muscles and ease away muscular tension. These benefits are brought to employees in the workplace, a must for those with busy lifestyles who have difficulty making crutial time for themselves. The massages can be held in a vacant office or meeting room, or even in the quiet corner of your main office. Treatment times are adaptable for your compaines needs and we will organise the visit to allow your staff to switch off for a while and enjoy their treatment without disrupting the work flow. Productivity levels have been shown to increase in companies who staff enjoy regular massage treatments.
Companies vary in the way they run on site chair massages depending on their needs and below are some examples of how some companies apply it at their events:
Drop in basis - a therapist is booked for a day and is set up amongst other activities going on for the wellbeing event. Staff drop in for a massage and they are typically 10 minutes long.
Set appointments - we put together a personalised appointment sheet and staff are pre booked in. Typically a spare meeting room is used and treatments are 15 to 20 minutes long.
Desk to desk - the therapist provides short treatments on staff members at their desk. Usually in call centres and treatments are typically 5 to 10 minutes long.
We will work to your needs you just need let us know your preferences. So whether you incorporate a few treatments into one day, slacken the stress during a wellness week, or try everything over the year, we guarantee there’s a great on-site massage option for your team.
Studies show that interactions with animals have a huge impact on our lives. Dogs in particular can ease loneliness, reduce stress, anxiety and depression, and even improve your cardiovascular health through encouraging exercise and playfulness. Check out this study on the POWER OF PUPPIES. ‘Puppy Rooms’ have also become very popular within universities to help reduce stress during exam season.
Staff can be encouraged to get a dog, however if they are not in a position to buy a dog why not encourage the workforce to get involved in dog walking sessions, Most local veterinary surgery's offer puppy parties for their customers. The parties help owners socialise their new puppies, which is crucial for the puppies proper development. Many companies have hoisted the puppy parties at their offices and combined the session with raising funds for organisations such as the Dogs Trust. Of course a suitable area will be necessary in case of 'minor accidents' but well worth the effort for the enormous benefits brought by making this part of your wellness day.
Another popular activity for wellbeing days is to organise a 'bring your dog to work day' and plan a dog walk for all so staff can benefit from the enjoyment of walking a dog.
Reflexology is a form of complementary therapy that can release tensions throughout your whole body, but traditionally, reflexologists relieve stress and tension by applying pressure and massaging certain areas of the feet, hands and ears. Having a reflexologist come into the office to treat the team can be a unique and inclusive wellness activity to help soothe staff and beat stress.
This type of acupressure massage is based on the Chinese principle that certain points (called reflexes) are linked to numerous areas on the body through the nervous system. By applying pressure to these reflexes, it stimulates energy flow and sends signals around the body, which targets other areas of tension and pain.
For example, the adrenal gland, a small area under the ball of your foot is stimulated during the ‘fight or flight’ response to danger. This leads the ball of the foot to be associated with fear and anger, a reflex that your therapist will focus on when trying to alleviate stress. The more relaxed you are, the softer this area will feel (almost like a small bag of sand), however stress can cause it to feel like a hard lump and could become extremely sensitive.
Reflexology is considered to have a range of uses, including:
- Stress reduction
- Soothing tired feet
- Improving circulation
- Reducing pain and enhancing overall wellbeing
It is also used as a way to alleviate some ailments, including:
- Tension headaches
- Digestive disorders
- Menstrual problems/discomfort
- Back pain
- Sports injuries
What to expect from a reflexology treatment
The therapist will carry out a safety consultation to ensure the treatment is safe for you. You will then be seated so that the hands or feet can be treated. Firm pressure will applied by the practitioners fingers and thumbs, the movements should not be uncomfortable, areas that are tender on the feet will indicate imbalance in parts of the body which the therapist will work to treat and heal.
How it works providing reflexology on your wellbeing day
We recommend 20 minutes minimum for a reflexology foot treatment, not including the consultation. The treatments can be provided as follows:
• Couch treatments - our therapist brings along a couch. The staff member will remove shoes and socks and lay on the couch for a 20 minute reflexology treatment on their feet, hands or both.
• Footstool treatments - the staff member will sit in a chair and remove shoes and socks for a 20 minute reflexology treatment on their feet. The therapist will sit on a footstool or cushion.
• Hand reflexology - a table and 2 chairs are required for our therapist to provide hand reflexology treatments. Typically treatments are 15 to 20 minutes long
• Hand and ear reflexology - a shorter hand reflexology treatment will be given to allow time for reflexology treatments on the ears - typically treatments are 20 to 30 minutes long
For more information on reflexology treatments in the workplace, take a look at our reflexology page.
Exercise doesn’t have to be associated with sweat and pain for you to see results. ANY form of exercise will have a positive impact on your mind and body, so picking something that you enjoy will increases the chances of longevity. One of the best stress busting physical activity is dancing. Dancing is in our blood, and music is a beautiful way to lighten your mood, so why not put them together?
Nowadays, we have a huge amount of dance classes to choose from, so you can try out a variety to see which music you like, but there’s a reason why Zumba has taken the world by a storm. The music is infectious, the moves are easy to follow, it’s brilliantly fun, and it allows you to get a sweat on!
Funnily enough, Zumba started as a mistake when Columbian aerobic teacher Alberto Perez forgot his regular music and had to improvise. He used what he had, a traditional Latin mix of salsa and merengue, and never looked back. Now, there are thousands of instructors all over the world, teaching in 35 countries, so click here to find a Zumba instructor near you.
For a variety of dance classes, you can also contact either a local dance studio to see what they have on offer or search for your desired dance class on FirstTutors. Or for a more fun way to introduce dance into your wellness day, you could run a Strictly Come Dance work competition for the more adventurous staff members.
Indian Head Massage is an ancient therapeutic treatment that focuses on the head, face, neck and shoulders, using acupressure to rebalance your body. It is a deep and incredibly relaxing massage, and has been practiced in India for thousands of years. It uses a variety of pressure techniques that tap into your ‘chakras’ (the centres in our body in which energy flows through). It focuses on mind, body and spirit, and should make you feel detached and serene, clearing your head and leaving you relaxed and happy.
What to expect from an Indian head massage
The therapist will request that you sit on a chair, and the treatment is given when you are sitting in an upright seated position. You should wear loose fitting clothing, so that you don’t feel restricted or uncomfortable, and note that some therapists use oils when massaging your scalp, however as part of a workplace massage, our therapists do not use oils to make it more appropriate for your work environment. However, a treatment with oil is wonderful for your hair so if staff would enjoy this, oils can be included if you wish, but most will likely prefer a treatment with no oils. The upper back, shoulders, neck and head will all be massaged with various different techniques to soothe the body’s chi and release tension held in these key areas.
Indian head massage also stimulates the flow of blood, lymph, oxygen and endorphins in the body, which in turn effects and benefits those areas that are treated. Simulation of the parasympathetic nervous system encourages the heart rate and breathing to slow and blood pressure to decrease. This helps to reduce any stress or anxiety and helps promote a good night’s sleep. It is also known to help headaches, migraines, eyestrain, anxiety, and concentration.
Indian head massage treatments are a perfect activity for any wellbeing day, giving immediate benefits as well as lasting relief, and can be given to staff as part of a multi package along with onsite massage treatments. For more information, read about our Indian head massage treatments here.
This may come as a surprise, but writing has been proven to help heal not only your mind, but your body too! (Check out this study on the effect of writing). From managing emotions to physical ailments, venting your feelings through creative writing has shown a large connection between the body and mind. It is thought to reduce stress, lower blood pressure, aid a number of social, academic and cognitive variables, and even influence immune function.
Don’t believe us? Try it for yourself! In one of the experiments, participants were asked to write about their thoughts and feelings for 20 minutes, on deeply emotional issues. The only condition: do not stop writing. This activity is called ‘free writing’, and during the 20 minutes, you must try not to think too much. Do not censor your writing, and don’t pause to make structured thoughts. It does not matter if your writing is grammatically correct, or neat, or if you write ‘I don’t know what to write’ for three lines. Just. Keep. Writing.
Then sit back and read what you wrote. You may find an emotion lurking you didn’t realise was inside you, realise an action you wish to take, or at very least, just feel more relaxed from venting your feelings. This indulgence in creativity may seem strange at first, but it is a brilliant way to heal the mind and body, and has the power to change your life for the better.
You can also challenge staff to write a short journal everyday up until the wellness day, and on the day, share with everyone anything they discovered or learned from the experience, or discuss any way it might have helped them.
Another writing activity to get the creative juices flowing and allow staff to explore their mental being more is by using prompts such as the ones below from The Radical Transformation Project:
- Write about a difficult time in your life that you overcame
- Describe how you want your life to look in 5, 10 and 20 years
- What are the three things that scare you the most and why?
- Name five moments when you were ecstatically happy
- What are three things you can do to help your mental health?
- When times get tough I want to remember that _______
- My greatest qualities are ________
- 10 things I feel thankful for are __________
- Right now, my greatest challenge is ________
- This week I am looking forward to these three things _________
- On a scale of 1-10 my mental health is at a _____ because
- If I could meet anyone in the world I would like to meet _____ because
- Describe a situation where everything worked out for you
- Who has been your biggest supporter? Write that person a thank you letter
- Today my victories were:
- What was your biggest learning moment this week?
- Write a thank you letter to your body
- If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go and why?
- Describe your biggest accomplishment and why it means so much to you
- No matter how terrible my day is these ten things can always make me feel better:
- The biggest lessons I’ve learned from my friends/family are:
- If I didn’t _________ I would have never learned________________
- If I didn’t have any fear I would ________________
- What was your biggest failure and what did you learn from it?
- What do you wish most people knew about you and why?
- What was your most embarrassing moment and why?
- A fear I would like to overcome is ________. I can do these things to start overcoming it:
- If you could change anything about yourself what would it be and why?
- Describe your happiest and saddest childhood memories
- If I could have any career I would be a __________ because:
- What was the last thing that made you feel deeply frustrated?
- How do you want to be remembered?
- Describe a time when you had to make a really hard choice
- What is a trait that you admire most in others? In what ways do you see that trait in yourself
- Name ten things you can start doing to take care of yourself?
- What are your ten worst habits and how do they impact your life?
- Describe a time when you sabotaged a good situation for yourself. Explore why you did that
- What would unconditional love look like for you? What would it feel like?
- If you had to pick one day to relive over and over for the rest of your life what would it be and why?
- Describe your perfect relationship
- How would you describe yourself to a stranger?
- What are your ten best talents?
- What was the best compliment you ever received?
- What is the most unique thing about you? Do you like to hide it or let it show?
- If you knew this was your last day on earth what would you do?
- Name ten songs that make you feel pumped
- If you could achieve anything in your lifetime what would it be?
- What friendship that you’ve had was the most meaningful?
Create a relaxing and open space, where staff can write together, discuss prompts and ideas, share their writings if they wish and generally just enjoy some mindful self-reflection. At very least, they can choose a prompt that makes them feel good about themselves and boost confidence while having a bit of fun!
Pilates is a safe and effective method of exercise that focuses on muscular balance, while Yoga incorporates gentle exercise, breath control and meditation. There are many health benefits in regularly practicing Yoga or Pilates, such as lowering blood pressure, improving posture, increasing circulation and giving a sense of wellbeing.
One of the main differences between Yoga and Pilates is that Yoga will gradually increase the flexibility in your muscles and joints, while Pilates focuses more on trying to relax tense muscles while working on improving your core muscles, helping you better support your back and providing strength to your body as a whole. There is an element of flexibility explored in Pilates however, as your balance is tested, twisting and pushing your body to its maximum flexibility.
The art of practicing Yoga helps in controlling your mind, body and soul, bringing together physical and mental disciplines to manage stress. Though similar, Pilates is a practice concentrated on toning your body and improving your posture and movement. Both can be modified for beginners, and have numerous mental benefits too, such as an improved mood, reduced fatigue, regulated sleep and reduced stress.
We frequently organise Yoga and Pilates classes for wellness days, as they are a great, inclusive activity for all ages, genders and abilities. Usually there are approximately 15 people per class but depending on needs and the size of the space, larger numbers can often be accommodated to a degree. A one-hour booking is £185 (excl. VAT) and classes can last for the whole time, or be split into 30-minute sessions if you have a larger office.
Another hugely popular activity for wellness days is mindfulness, and one that in recent years we have really seen take off. It allows you to release your stress, be in the moment, and simply let go, focusing on your breath and nothing else. Being mindful throughout your life doesn’t need to be a chore. There are many ways to seamlessly incorporate it into your daily life, and after no time at all, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.
Try these small changes at work for a week, and you’ll notice a difference - we guarantee it!
Practice kindness meditation (taking time to think pleasant things about others) for 15-30 seconds.
The benefit? Thinking positive thoughts about others can leave you feeling happier.
1) Send a loved one a well-wishing text or email on your break.
2) Hold positive thoughts for your family, colleagues or friends in your mind for 10 seconds at a time.
3) Smile at colleagues at the end of the day and wish them an enjoyable evening.
Focus on your breath (sit still, with eyes closed or open, and concentrate on your inhale and exhale) for 1 minute, five times a day.
The benefit? Taking time out to focus on your breath will bring about calmness and control.
1) Every 90 minutes, set a timer for one minute on your phone or watch.
2) Close your eyes. Inhale deeply through your nose, and exhale deeply through your mouth.
3) At the end of the minute, gradually bring your attention back to the room. Deep and even breaths have been proven to lower levels of cortisol (known as the stress hormone), which in turn reduces stress.
Scan your body (focus on parts of your body using the below guide) for 3-10 minutes.
The benefit? Removing yourself from your busy work environment will give you the quiet space needed to meditate.
1) Find a quiet space or free room during your break.
2) Sit or lie down and begin by focusing your attention of the sensations at the top of your head.
3) Move your attention down your body one part at a time, noticing how everything feels. The body scan enables you to get in touch with your body and let go of any tension.
Record moments of happiness (write down happy moments as you feel it) for 5-10 minutes.
The benefit? Consciously acknowledging happiness takes the focus off negative daily experiences and reduces stress by keeping positive.
1) When you find yourself feeling happy, stop and acknowledge it.
2) Write the experience down in a happiness journal. A 2006 study found that people who recorded their positive experiences reported greater feelings of life satisfaction.
3) Check out this Harvard Post about how gratitude leads to a happier life.
Drink water mindfully (focus on the action of drinking to appreciaite rehydrating your body) for 2 minutes, every hour.
The benefit? Water is capable of calming and grounding your mental state. As the human body is 70% water, it needs a regular supply to function properly.
1) Pour a glass of water and observe how the water looks in the glass
2) Take a sip and hold it in your mouth. Notice the feel and temperature of the liquid.
3) Swallow the water with intent and feel the sensations in your throat. This changes the habitual act into a mindful and meditative experience.
Check out some more ideas in the infographic below:
This has to be the most entertaining way to get your five a day. Smoothie bikes are interactive, unique, and most importantly fun! Try winning a virtual race within the office on the simulated Smoothie Bike Mile Challenge, or partake in arcade games while riding.
They are fantastic ways to draw crowds at wellness events, and if you prefer something other than a smoothie, the blender bikes are certainly not limited. You can make your own iced tea, milkshakes and frappes as a special treat, or even end the day with some fun-loving cocktails! Love Smoothie Bike are fully licenced to serve alcohol, so if your wellness day goes on late into the evening, why not spice up the night with a bike?
We all know that exercise is the key to feeling good all round, improving health and wellbeing, but many people still find it hard to complete. Whether this is due to feeling tired, the rainy British weather, stress at work or even that you’re achy from your last workout, it’s all too easy to make an excuse.
But that stops today! Try to keep in mind that your recommended weekly exercise is at least 150 minutes of moderate activity (20-25 minutes a day), or 75 minutes vigorous activity (just over 10 minutes a day).
From their job, an office worker may burn around 200 calories, while an active worker burns over 2,000 - so why not bring exercise to work? Take the opportunity to move whenever you get the chance, be that climbing the stairs rather than taking the elevator, doing a lap around the office when you get up to fill up your water bottle, or just trying to take a short walk at lunchtime. You could also simply get up and jump around, do some press-ups or briefly sprint on the spot when you need a brain break, as the chemicals released by your brain after a short burst of exercise can actually help you think clearer too. You might look at bit mad at first, but get the others on board too and they’ll soon see the benefits!
To help your staff get moving on your work wellness day, encourage them to walk or cycle to work rather than driving, to complete some stress busting Yoga to start the day, or to try these top four office exercises to stay in shape. Stretching is also a wonderful way to start the day and get your staff energised and grounded in the present, so you could get the team involved in a group stretching session for five to ten minutes every morning.
Or if you find another way your staff want to get moving on a day to day, build up to a challenge on your wellness day. Challenges are proven to keep individuals motivated and will give everyone a sense of achievement following the day, as well as encourage them to keep active leading up to your wellness day.
Any steps taken to break the habit of sitting still are brilliant, so stay positive and keep going!
People who take fewer than 5,000 steps are considered sedentary or inactive. Somewhat active people take around 7,500 to 9,999 steps a day, and if you are active, the aim is 10,000 or higher. The average number of steps taken in the UK is 3,000. Try a fitness tracker such as an Apple Watch or a Fitbit, and try to keep up with one of the healthiest offices around!
For your wellness day, get the team out walking together on their lunchbreaks in preparation for a work charity walk, or perhaps a hike out in the countryside finished off with a picnic.
Or if your team is up for some hearty competition before your big work walk (or run), track how many steps each staff member does a day for the duration leading up to the wellness day and give prizes on the day for:
- • Most total steps
- • Most steps on one day
- • Most improved stepper
- • Most consistent stepper
Get people excited, and get stepping!
Getting staff outdoors for a wellness day in the park is a great way to enjoy some nostalgic games and activities from the sports days of yesteryear. Tap into competitive edges with some competitions and challenges, including:
- Egg and spoon race
- Three-legged race
- Sack race
- Bean bag relay race – bean bags are placed 15m, 30m, 45m and 60m away from the start line (or whatever distances you choose). The first team member has to get the first bean bag and run back before the second can get the second furthest-away bean bag, and so on
- Football slalom
- Hockey slalom
- Pass-the-orange-under-the-chin relay race - stand in a line and the final person runs to the end with the orange and starts again, until all team members are back in their original order
- Pass-the-balloon-between-the-knees relay race – the same as the orange game above
- Space hopper relay
- Hula hoop race
- Tug of war
- Penalty shoot out
- Most keep-y uppies in a row (or ball bounces on a racket)
Plus, any more you can think of! Change the teams up a couple of times to keep things fun and people motivated, and award a prize at the end of each round to the winning team. On top of (or instead of) these games, you can get staff to vote on their favourite sports and set up games of sports for the most popular ones. These could be:
Or something more relaxed like:
- Walk around the park
- Relaxed kick around
- Game of catch
Provide the equipment needed and either get a tournament going or let the team relax and enjoy the outdoors however they please! Top this off with a healthy picnic, where employees can bring and share food, or you can provide a healthy selection or some healthy BBQ food.
If Smoothie Bikes aren’t your cup of…smoothie, then why not try a pop up Smoothie bar? With the freshest ingredients around, you’re guaranteed to find a delicious addition to your day.
Another slightly lower budget idea is to make your own office snack bar! This is a great, healthy way to kick the cravings, and allows you to choose each ingredient according to what you need, whether that is an energy boost, help with your immune system or a healthier way to ward off hunger.
Check out our Lunchbox Boosts to find a personalised way to make you feel better. Also, have a look at these specially prepared vegan and gluten-free recipes if you are adapting to dietary requirements.
If you haven’t learned enough with our quick fix food tips, book in a session with a professional dietitian. It’s surprising how much you’ll discover, and it can be really eye opening. So many foods are labelled as ‘healthy’ or ‘low fat’ nowadays but are misleadingly naughty, and it can be a minefield trying to find something truly nourishing. A dietitian will help you find a balance in your meals, so you can have all of the taste with none of the worry. Book a session now so you can get the most out of each morsel. Remember, if you do have some cravings that won’t go away, it doesn’t hurt to indulge every so often. Just make sure you enjoy it, and get back on track afterwards!
In terms of nutrition, fresh tends to be best. So, start from scratch and bring the meal making to you! This is a great way to get the whole office involved, and it will teach you to whip up a whole range of healthy meals right in your office. If you don’t have a kitchen, you could go for a corporate day out, working on both your teambuilding and chef skills.
Cooking knowledge, especially about health, will last you a lifetime. This will allow you to sustainably cook tasty and wholesome meals to bring in to work, saving you from a lifetime of supermarket meal deals. It will not only bring a lease of life to your lunchtime, but should also boost your joie de vivre (joy of life), so you feel good from the inside out.
Here are few extra ideas to add to your snack bar…
Foods to fight fatigue:
- Whole grains
- Nuts and seeds
- Any fresh, seasonal fruit or veg
- Chia seeds
- Eggs and lean protein
- Peanut butter
For lunch? Eggs on toast/bagel with cheese/peanut butter sandwich/turkey sandwich/overnight oats with chia seeds. Serve all choices with fruit.
Immune system boosting foods:
- Citrus fruits
- Red bell peppers
For lunch? Either a Chinese chicken/veg stir fry (with garlic and ginger), or a big salad with raw peppers and broccoli. Serve with half a grapefruit/an orange and a cup of green tea. Snack on yoghurt/almonds through the day.
Fresh and filling foods:
- Non-starchy veg e.g. cucumbers, carrots, courgettes, celery, broccoli
- Calcium rich cheese
- Greek yoghurt
- Broth based soup
For lunch? Chicken broth, salmon and veg, or Greek yogurt with fresh raspberries and cereal/granola. Snack on pistachio nuts and crudités with hummus.
Anti inflammatory foods:
- Strawberries, blueberries, cherries, oranges
- Fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, and sardines
- Nuts like almonds and walnuts
- Green leafy veg such as spinach or kale
- Olive oil
For lunch? A tuna salad with tomatoes and chopped walnuts, seasoned lightly with olive oil. Finish with a berry heavy smoothie.
Foods that lower blood pressure:
- Potassium rich fruits (tomato juice/puree, orange juice, bananas, apricots, currants)
- Skimmed milk and yogurt
- Dark chocolate
For lunch? Blueberry/currant porridge with a glass of orange juice, and a banana if you’re still hungry.
Food for stress and anxiety:
- Dark chocolate
For lunch? Turkey/salmon, with either stir-fried veg (broccoli, asparagus, spinach etc.) or a fresh salad. Finish off with a fruit salad, and throughout the day snack on almonds or a few pieces of dark chocolate!
Smiling and laughing is a great way to release endorphins, which reduces stress and increases your mood. It’s also a brilliant way to get to know your work team, as laughter brings people together. Why not book a comedy gig and go for an evening out? The thought of a night out can spike your enthusiasm for work throughout the week, and it can help you get to know your co-workers. Or even better, bring a comedian into your workplace! This will offer a break in your usual routine, and is likely have the whole office in stitches.
If neither of these are viable options for you, simply try to stay cheery and get chatting during your lunch breaks. This will strengthen the bond between you and your colleagues, and constructively motivate you all. Positivity and productivity go hand in hand!
One of our last suggestions for your wellness day happens to be one of our favourites, the health kiosk. These are all in one machines that measure your levels of fitness and health, including BMI, blood pressure, heart rate, weight, and body fat percentage. They are an easy and inexpensive way to achieve a better awareness of your body, and motivate you towards a healthier life.
They can be hired out specifically for wellness programmes, or can be purchased to keep in the office as a regular check up on your health and progress, providing relevant and potentially life saving data. A multi-functional kiosk located in your workplace could serve as a valuable and motivating health solution, allowing employees to monitor their biometric measurements on a regular basis. By taking an active role in your own health, you are guaranteed a longer and happier life!
It is vital to understand stress, and how it affects your mind and body. If ignored, it can lead to serious health problems such as a rise in blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, mental and emotional breakdown, and a rise in the spread of cancer. This is why we try to encourage the promotion of wellness days, to remind you stop and give yourself some TLC. Here at Sense Massage Therapy, we know stress management is vital for a healthy life.
Take our free online stress test to see how you’re coping, and then book a stress management workshop to learn the many ways to cope with pressures in your life. The power of these programmes is that companies can improve how their employees go about their lives, both in and out of the workplace. By gaining a sense of what is causing your staff stress, you can tackle it more effectively, finding a simple and straightforward path to success.
Holding a wellness day is a great first step, and those who participate generally show a more positive attitude towards their employer, feel healthier, and note a greater productivity at work. This is far from surprising, considering the host of opportunities offered nowadays, however there are still numerous reasons why people don’t take part.
In order to maximise participation, satisfaction and overall success, keep these things in mind:
- Give sufficient warning/information about upcoming events. (Many members of staff state that they don’t know what to expect, or that until the day, they hadn’t heard about the event at all)
- Show that you care. (Many people opt out of wellness days because they feel their employers don’t support or consider their culture/disability when organising such events)
- Check with your staff! (One of the largest reasons employees drop out is because they dislike the activity, so take a poll for the most popular events and gauge what has the most interest…this will help you make the most out of your wellness day)
Wellness Week Example Plan
- Monday Mindfulness
- Take it easy Tuesday
- Wednesday Wind-downs
- Therapist Thursday
- Fresh Feeling Friday
- Meditation Session – a relaxed start to the day.
- Warm up your body and mind with an Office Workout / Movement Sticks.
- Get moving in the morning on a group dog walk or heal your heart inside at the puppy petting station!
- Start the day right with On Site Massage.
- Fresh fruit smoothie bike – pump up your day with a personalised smoothie!
- Eat mindfully and learn while you listen to a nutrition talk.
- Let your hair down at lunch with some Indian Head Massage.
- Release your inner chef, creating healthy and tasty meals in a lunchtime cooking class.
- Take a midday break and check out the Wellness Kiosk!
- Loosen up and stretch away your sorrows…it’s Yoga / Pilates time.
- Reduce stress with a creative writing session!
- Book in a Stress Management Session and use this time to survey your staff.
- Shake off the stress with an afternoon dance class!
- Finish the day relaxing with Reflexology.
- Late night laughter – go out together to a comedy show!
Art Therapy is a form of psychotherapy that uses art media as its primary mode of communication. It is practised by qualified, registered Art Therapists who work with children, young people, adults and the elderly. Clients who can use art therapy may have a wide range of difficulties, disabilities or diagnoses. These include, for example, emotional, behavioral or mental health problems, learning or physical disabilities, life-limiting conditions, brain-injury or neurological conditions and physical illness. Art therapy may be provided for groups, or for individuals, depending on clients' needs. It is not a recreational activity or an art lesson, although the sessions can be enjoyable. Clients do not need to have any previous experience or expertise in art.