It is an intentional lifestyle choice characterized by maximum development and improvement of a person’s physical, mental, social and spiritual well-being.
For Individuals: If you want a better quality of life, it is essential that you achieve a high state of wellness.
For Organizations: One way to build competitive advantages for an organization is to improve the level of wellness of its employees. Wellness matters! When a person gains a high state of wellness it enhances his / her ability to be productive in all phases of life - personal, professional and extra-curricular.
While there isn’t a fixed formula to achieve wellness, there are some definite routines and disciplines that can assist you in reaching that goal.
Physical work-out and the food we eat play a huge role in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. With regular exercise and a healthy nutritious diet, you will be able to stay on track to your path to wellness. It’s important to maintain healthy, positive relationships with your family, friends and colleagues. By strengthening your connections to your family you will restore your sense of worth that will energise you by feeling loved and wanted. Also encourage yourself to relax and take it easy. Bring your world to stand-still for a few moments every day; this will reduce stress levels. A high state of wellness subdues the stresses from external situations and connects you with your inner peace and improves your physical health.
Common perception, although incorrect, is wellness is merely absence of disease; Absence of disease is merely a stage in the continuum from wellness to disease state.
On one end is illness and the other end is wellness. The medical model typically views health as the absence of disease. From a wellness perspective, this is just the ‘zero’ point (no illness or wellness). Just like there are many levels of illness there are many levels of wellness. The goal is to keep striving to be better.
Research in USA, UK & Australia has shown that huge sums of money amounting billions of dollars are lost annually in loss of productivity due to poor health status / wellness of employees. If similar research were done in India, undoubtedly it would indicate similar losses amounting to several thousand of crore rupees.
Employee health affects more than just medical costs. A workforce that is high on wellness is a more productive workforce. The latest research shows that a person’s lifestyle, behaviour (attitude) and wellness level are closely intertwined. In other words, employee wellness state directly influences employee work behaviour, and on-the-job performance. Therefore, developing healthier employees will result in a more productive workforce.
Poor wellness has significant bearing on lifestyle activities and causes loss of concentration, anxiety, memory loss, poor motivation, poor communication, poor performance, and even failure to imbibe newer skill sets.
Employers could take a major step in the right direction by moving employee health to an integral part of their human capital “asset management” strategy. Investing in the health of employees is just as important as investing in training to develop their skills.
The issue is not what it costs to keep people healthy and productive but what it costs not to. For many organizations, importance of employee health relates to reducing medical costs. It is however crucial to take notice of the fact that unhealthy lifestyles often lead to chronic diseases, causing significant loss to businesses just due to lost productivity alone. Evidence suggests that a strategic vision of employee wellness will yield better results. Wellness at workplace enables access to employee’s health at a time when interventions can still change their long-term health trajectory.
More employers are recognizing wellness programs lead to decreased health claims, decreased absenteeism, and decreased presenteeism
Since lifestyle has been found to be the single most important factor determining our pattern of general health, it is important that employees be educated to “take charge” of their daily life and to set healthy lifestyle goals. The secret is not in medical care, but consistent personalised self- care. The approach of "a one-size-fits-all" no longer works. Even wellness programs need to be customized.
There is growing evidence of the link between health and productivity. Researchers in USA have reported typically a cost/benefit ratio of 1:6 associated with well implemented wellness programs i.e. achieving six dollars of savings to each dollar of cost invested in the program, within 6 to 18 months of starting the programs.
Improve the health and productivity of your workforce, and watch the benefits flow to your bottom line. “Happy employees directly translate into happy customers.”