By Lauretta Jaye
Over the last few years, individuals have been focusing on their personal wellbeing. Wellbeing now encompasses all aspects of a person’s life including eating well, having an active lifestyle, contributing to the world, mindfulness… the list goes on.
Similar to individuals, organizations are now meeting their employees where they are and have made a pivot from focusing on only corporate social responsibility to total company wellbeing.
What this Means
The definition of corporate wellness is simple: it is any program designed to encourage healthier lifestyle choices for your workplace.
According to a recent study, Corporate wellness programs are nearly an $8 billion industry in the United States alone, and the segment is expected to grow another 7.8 percent by 2021. Globally, it’s a $40 billion industry.
Why You Should Care
According to the Centers for Disease Foundation, worker illness and injuries cost U.S. employers $225.8 billion annually, or $1,685 per employee. In addition, $1 trillion is lost due to unaddressed employee chronic disease each year, according to the Milken Institute.
A study by the University of Louisville found that every dollar invested in a wellness program generated $7 in healthcare savings. The study also revealed that changing certain behaviors decreased the average number of health risks among employees from 5 or more health risks to 0 to 3 risks.
Those are some pretty staggering numbers and are a clear indicator that corporate wellbeing programs are an investment organizations need to make.
The 7 Dimensions of Wellness
Organizations shouldn’t be intimidated to establish a corporate wellness program. There is no one-size-fits-all solution as wellness means different things to different people. We found the seven dimensions of wellness, created by the University of California Riverside, that provide a great foundation. Companies should create solutions to help their employees strive towards balance in each.
- Social Wellness is the ability to relate to and connect with other people in our world. Our ability to establish and maintain positive relationships with family, friends and co-workers contributes to our Social Wellness.
- Emotional Wellness is the ability to understand ourselves and cope with the challenges life can bring. The ability to acknowledge and share feelings of anger, fear, sadness or stress; hope, love, joy and happiness in a productive manner contributes to our Emotional Wellness.
- Spiritual Wellness is the ability to establish peace and harmony in our lives. The ability to develop congruency between values and actions and to realize a common purpose that binds creation together contributes to our Spiritual Wellness.
- Environmental Wellness is the ability to recognize our own responsibility for the quality of the air, the water and the land that surrounds us. The ability to make a positive impact on the quality of our environment, be it our homes, our communities or our planet contributes to our Environmental Wellness.
- Occupational Wellness is the ability to get personal fulfillment from our jobs or our chosen career fields while still maintaining balance in our lives. Our desire to contribute in our careers to make a positive impact on the organizations we work in and to society as a whole leads to Occupational Wellness.
- Intellectual Wellness is the ability to open our minds to new ideas and experiences that can be applied to personal decisions, group interaction and community betterment. The desire to learn new concepts, improve skills and seek challenges in pursuit of lifelong learning contributes to our Intellectual Wellness.
- Physical Wellness is the ability to maintain a healthy quality of life that allows us to get through our daily activities without undue fatigue or physical stress. The ability to recognize that our behaviors have a significant impact on our wellness and adopting healthful habits (routine check ups, a balanced diet, exercise, etc.) while avoiding destructive habits (tobacco, drugs, alcohol, etc.) will lead to optimal Physical Wellness.
How Giving Fits In
The team at DoTopia often turns to the teachings of Deepak Chopra, a long standing expert in the wellness industry, for inspiration and direction.
Deepak’s 7 Spiritual Laws, similar to the 7 dimensions of wellness, were created to help us understand and strive towards achieving a sense of purpose and wellness. The second law is the Law of Giving: The universe operates through dynamic change…giving and receiving are different aspects of the flow of energy in the universe. And in our willingness to give that which we seek, we keep the abundance of the universe circulating in our lives.
Giving is part of wellbeing. As we read through what it means to be socially, emotionally, spiritually, environmentally, occupationally, intellectually and physically well, we see a multitude of ways where giving can be incorporated and utilized to achieve each.
Whether the giving is through the investment of time, energy or means, it is a crucial part of achieving wellness both individually and as an organization.
Originally published on Dotopia.