Creating a Winter Wellness Plan

warming feet by the fireplace

How to Embrace Winter

As we know, many Canadian’s get into a slump around this time of year, as the days get shorter and the temperature gets colder.

Mindset is everything and I have some simple things you can do to help embrace the months ahead.

Creating a Winter Wellness Plan

The winter months can be a time to thrive instead of just plowing through the days, and wishing the time away. It can be a time to create some wonderful memories a time for laughter, a time to thrive with a little sprinkle of warm and cozy.

Having a winter wellness plan allows you to mentally set an intention and a clear path on how to cultivate joy for the season.

Simply set a specific intention on how you are going to embrace the winter. Our minds are so powerful and dictate so much of how we feel, so when we set a clear intention we are priming our mind for happiness and peace no matter how cold it gets outside.

Hear are some intentions I have on my plan:

  1. Really appreciating my warm coat, scarf, mitts and walking my dog every night.
  2. Dusting off my skates and looking for opportunities to embrace the kid in me.
  3. Having cozy candlelit dinners with the family.
  4. Putting something on the calendar to look forward to like a date night with your partner or friend.
  5. Using my diffuser daily  to fill my house and office with warm cozy, uplifting aromas.

Winter Wellness Plan Image

What’s on your winter wellness plan?

Additional Tips to Keep Your Mind Elevated this Winter

Simple pleasures at home can make a difference in shifting your mood and lifting the energy in your home:

  • Light a candle or turn the fireplace on to set a cozy ambiance.
  • Have a nice collection of teas for soothing comfort after a meal. add ref to Yogi tea and makes house smell great.
  • Take a warm bubble bath.
  • Diffuse essential oils like cinnamon, cloves and orange for an uplifting aroma.
  • Cuddle on the coach with your favourite blanket, a good book or uplifting movie.

Anything that creates warmth and comfort in the home also creates it in the mind; don’t you agree?

Winter is an excellent time to take better care of yourself, and we’re here for you. By planning ahead, you can avoid most of the things that lead to stress during this time of year. Take a few minutes to work through a wellness plan so you can stay happy and healthy throughout winter.

More Winter Wellness Tips

  • Get Enough Sleep

Sleep is one of the best ways to reduce stress and improve your mood. If you have trouble falling asleep, try going to bed earlier, or doing something relaxing like reading before bedtime.

  • Plan for Meals and Snacks

You should always have healthy snacks on hand to help you avoid overeating at meals. Try putting together a few different types of snacks to keep things interesting.

  • Practice Breathing Exercises

Inhaling deeply can help you relax and reduce stress levels throughout your body.

  • Connect more with people that feel good to be around.

Connection is important, the right connection will lift your spirits.

  • Get Moving

You should aim to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. It’s best to do this in several short bursts throughout the day rather than one long session. You don’t need to go for a run or lift weights to lower stress and improve your mood. Try going for a walk after dinner, or take the stairs instead of the elevator. Find a walking buddy or workout buddy that can help keep you accountable.

  • Last and certainly not least; remember to take time for yourself! Winter is a great time for inner reflection. Daily meditations or journaling can be just what your soul needs for that warm peaceful, self-loving feeling.

 

with Love,

Julie

 

Yogi Tea

Employee Wellness

Yogi Tea Recipe

Here’s a cozy hot tea that makes the whole house smell fabulous.

The simple pleasures is where it’s at in life. With the winter months and the colder weather here, simple pleasures like a spicy warm homemade cup of delightful tea can help shift our energy and feel a sense of gratitude.

This recipe brings me so much joy, not only in making it but also sharing it with friends. I often have a pot of this simmering on the stove during the colder months.

It’s the perfect accompaniment on the sofa, by the fire, or under a warm cozy blanket. The delightful taste of the combined spices is beautiful. It is definitely one for the taste buds and it warms the body and soul with every nurturing sip of this cup of love.

Make it for friends and the whole family to enjoy.

Hope you love this as much as we do!

You can substitute any milk alternative of your choice. i.e. Oat Milk, Almond Milk, etc.

*Here is the original Yogi Bhajan recipe:

Measurements can vary according to your taste. Be careful not to put in too many cloves or cinnamon sticks.

To 3 litres of boiling water add:

  • 20 whole cloves, see them dance!
  • 20 whole green cardamom pods (you can open them up)
  • 20 whole black peppercorns
  • 5 sticks of cinnamon

Continue boiling for 15 – 20 minutes, then add:

  • 1/4 teaspoon of any black tea. After one or two minutes add:
  • 1/2 cup cold milk per cup of remaining liquid

When it returns to the boiling point, remove immediately from heat. (Watch closely so it doesn’t boil over.) Strain and serve with honey to taste, if desired.

The black pepper is a blood purifier, the cardamom is for the colon, the cloves for the nervous system, and the cinnamon for the bones. The milk aids in the easy assimilation of the spices and avoids irritation to the colon. The black tea acts as an alloy for all the ingredients, achieving a new chemical structure which makes the tea a healthy as well as delicious drink.

Slices of fresh ginger root may also be included, especially when you are suffering from a cold, recovering from the flu, or you just want extra energy.

*This recipe is from the Book; Kundalini Yoga: The Flow of Eternal Power. It was printed with permission from Copyright 1969 Yogi Bhajan.

with Love,

Julie

 

Yummy Homemade Granola

Yummy Homemade Granola

Get cozy with this delicious homemade granola that will make your whole house smell so inviting.

Our entire family loves this granola and whenever we serve it to our guests I get asked for the recipe. It is indeed a keeper for the recipe books.

It’s crunchy and delicious, and every bite leaves you with so much tastebud pleasure. Store-bought granola can be loaded with sugar, so this homemade version is a healthy and delicious option that is easy to make.

Your home will smell like a bakery and feel so warm and inviting. I love making this before the kids get home as they always comment on the amazing smell.  We have been making this recipe for years and have adapted it over time.  Feel free to make any substitutions. You can even eliminate the double bake if you like your granola texture chewier.

 

Ingredients:

1 cup of quick oats

½ cup of sesame seeds

½ cup sunflower seeds

½ cup pistachios

½ cup sliced almonds (or whole and just crush them a bit)

½ cup unsalted cashews (optional)

½ cup of pumpkin seeds

½ cup unsweetened coconut

¼ cup of hemp hearts (optional but great for added protein)

¼ – ½ cup of honey or maple syrup

1 tbsp. of melted butter

¼ cup of melted coconut oil

¼ cup dried cherries, blueberries, or cranberries (optional)

 

Steps:

Toast seeds, nuts, and oatmeal on a cookie sheet in the oven, set at 350 degrees for about 10 -15 minutes, until golden brown.

Meanwhile melt coconut oil, butter, and honey or maple syrup in a pan.

Mix with toasted nuts and oatmeal when ready.

Add dried fruit, *coconut, and hemp hearts.

Put back into the oven for 5 minutes to create chunky granola.

If you are skipping the double bake, add the coconut for the last 5 minutes to get a nice golden brown color.

Store in an airtight container for a week but I doubt it won’t last that long.😊

This recipe is great for a quick breakfast or afternoon pick-me-up. Wonderful when served with thick Greek yoghurt and berries.

When I am hosting a brunch, I serve this in small mason jars and make individual granola parfaits.

Granola Parfait

Enjoy with love.

Quick and Healthy Banana Oat Muffins (gf)

Muffin Recipte

I whipped up a batch of these one afternoon with a few minutes to spare and a couple of ripe bananas that needed a use and the whole family loved them.

I also had a bag of almond meal that needed some of my love as I hadn’t used it in a while. I am always a little skeptical of using almond flour as the texture can be less appealing for some, especially my kids. However, these muffins turned out to be light and airy considering they have no gluten.

This delicious and nutritious muffing recipe that is packed with protein, makes for guilt free enjoyment which is the way it is supposed to be.

This is my kind of baking because it is super easy, super healthy and super yummy!

I love these for a quick light morning breakfast or to enjoy at the office with my afternoon tea!

I hope you love them too.

Enjoy

Julie Cass

 

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line your muffin tray with paper muffin cups.

You will need:

Dry Ingredients:

1 1/2 cup almond meal

3/4 cup oats

1/4 cup hemp hearts

Handful of chopped pecans

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

Wet Ingredients:

2 ripe bananas

2 eggs

1/4 cup honey

1 tsp vanilla

Options:

Handful dark chocolate chips

Directions:

Mix wet ingredients. Mix dry ingredients.

Incorporate the wet and dry mixed ingredients and add chocolate chips. Scoop the batter into muffin trays and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Your home will be filled with the warm cozy smell of fresh baked muffins. There is nothing like the smell of homemade baking and I also love that I know exactly what I put in, so I don’t worry about sugar or artificial ingredients.  Made with great, simple ingredients and a whole lot of love.

This recipe can be easily adapted to suit your likes, if you don’t like pecans substitute for any other nut or omit.  I like the crunch and texture the pecans add to this recipe.  Walnuts would also be fabulous.

5 time-saving measures you can do right now

5 time-saving measures you can do right now

So much of our overall success in our careers and our day-to-day lives are determined by our time management philosophy. There are so many diversions these days that we might waste hours without even realizing it.

And while leisure and downtime are absolutely important, you really may have a problem with time management if you’re averaging 6+ hours a day of screen time from scrolling through social media. 

How Time Management Plays A Major Role In Your Success

Time management is about strategizing and planning your available time to match each task you have each day. However, in order for it to be effective, you must stick as closely to the allotted time frame for each task as possible. It comes more naturally to some people than others, but it really boils down to discipline and habits. 

Time management is also linked to what you value. I always say if you value it, you will make time for it. Valuing your mental health should be top of your list.

Poor time management skills can lead to:

  • Missed deadlines
  • Increased stress levels
  • Lack of work-life balance
  • Poor work quality 
  • Ruining your professional reputation
  • Damaging relationships in your personal life

All these reasons are why having an effective time management strategy is truly a major key to your success. 

5 Best Tips to Improve Your Time Management Skills

If you have trouble completing tasks within a reasonable time frame, there are some tips you can apply to yield better results.

  1. Set your priorities and connect them to your values – Some tasks will naturally weigh more heavily on the importance scale than others. Organizing your day and prioritizing are the two first steps in effective time management. Utilizing to-do lists and time management apps could also be huge in helping you to track your time and keep your day in check. 
  2. Avoid Distractions – This is sometimes much easier said than done; however, if we’re honest, unnecessary distractions are one of the biggest causes of bad time management. Some distractions are unavoidable, for instance, if you work from home and have young children home with you, or an ill or elderly family member you’re caring for. But, if your problem is with electronics, putting your phone on ‘do not disturb’ or keeping it out of sight until you’ve completed your tasks is a good way to limit that distraction.
  3. Avoid multitasking – The ability to multitask is valued in today’s culture, but it may damage your time management. Taking on an overwhelming amount of tasks to complete within a short period could affect your efficiency and accuracy. Your productivity will increase if your full attention is devoted to the task at hand instead of being split. You will also be able to complete each task more quickly.
  4. Learn to say no – This tip goes hand in hand with avoiding multitasking. We can sometimes endure guilt for not being able to say yes to every call or knock, but the truth is this could lead to serious burnout. You must set a workload limit and accept the reality that you cannot say yes to everything.
  5. Take breaks – If you have huge tasks set out, it could be tempting to want to complete them all at once. However, this could lead to burnout and have serious implications on your mental health. 

Taking a short break for a few minutes every couple of hours can help you to recharge and bring fresh ideas and energy to your tasks.

It’s also important to remember not to skip out on meals to complete the tasks more quickly. Eating will refuel your body and provide you with the sustained energy you need to complete tasks. 

Once you have mastered effective time management, you will see a huge improvement in your quality of work, and overall quality and balance between work and life. 

To help you with your time management needs try my Healthy Mind, Body, and Business Weekly Planner.

The importance of promoting corporate workplace wellness

The importance of promoting corporate workplace wellness

The traditional work world is seeing a major shift in how employees operate. More people are putting their health first and taking practical actions to keep their mental health in check. With work-related stress and personal concerns, it’s no surprise that employees are leaning toward this route. And managers have begun to take note. 

This has led to corporate wellness programs becoming more popular in many workspaces. 

What is meant by corporate wellness?

Corporate wellness refers to any workplace program designed to encourage healthier lifestyle choices and habits that will improve the well-being of employees.  It concerns employees’ physical, emotional, and mental health and helps foster an organizational culture of health. 

By investing in employees’ well-being, managers are able to benefit from motivated workers who are healthy, productive, and passionate about their jobs.  

In order to be effective at promoting employee wellness, you must address all 5 areas:

  • Mental and emotional well-being
  • Social well-being
  • Financial well-being
  • Physical well-being
  • Digital well-being 

5 pillars of well-being at work

  1. Mental and emotional well-being – The ability to think clearly, operate, and respond to challenges that work presents daily is crucial, not just for the workplace, but for life in general. If employees feel liberated to express themselves and ask for help, it creates a workspace culture of both safety and community. 
  2. Social well-being – Social well-being works hand in hand with the mental and emotional well-being pillars. Feeling connected to other like-minded people and having a strong place of belonging can positively impact our social and mental health. It is important to create a connection, a culture of community, and togetherness among your staff. In order to keep work-play cohesion among departments and teams. Organizing team activities, breaks, outings, and socials can really help to boost the social well-being of your employees and a sense of community. I.e. pot lucks, sugar challenges, etc.
  3. Financial well-being – Financial stress can really take a toll and add to your employees’ stress and anxiety. Money is important for taking care of our needs and giving us a feeling of security in our lives. Talking about money and money management isn’t always easy or comfortable, and it can be even more difficult to cover this topic with your employees. However, removing the stigma associated with financial difficulties while offering tools and resources like money management or retirement programs to help can make a big difference.
  4. Physical well-being – The benefits of being physically healthy with exercise, a balanced diet, and quality rest as a part of one’s routine should not be understated. Contributing to your employee’s physical well-being can look like this: Flexible workdays, a workplace gym or gym membership, healthy snacks and Lunch & Learn programs offered exclusively to employees and direct family members.
  5. Digital well-being – The digital world has become a staple in most of our lives, including in the workspace. Having control of the tech in our lives without feeling overwhelmed, and being able to control screen time, is essential. Knowing when to unplug from the digital world and having a good balance even as it relates to work is very important to your employees’ digital well-being.

As a leader, you can promote corporate workplace wellness by implementing these 5 pillars and getting outside help from an expert coach in the field. If you are ready to help your employees take the steps needed to get them on the right track to overall health and corporate wellness, let’s talk

6 Positive Changes You Can Make Right Now For A Fulfilling Life

6 Positive Changes You Can Make Right Now For A Fulfilling Life

We all want a life that is happy, fulfilling, and filled with overall positive experiences. But the truth is that it isn’t always happy or pleasant. Life is full of ups and downs, twists and turns, and bumps that you must navigate. It’s what makes this entire experience interesting, but it can sometimes be overwhelming. 

One of the best ways you can learn to maneuver the challenges that life throws at you is by developing an overall positive mindset and implementing positive changes into your daily routine.

Why a Positive Change Is Necessary

Change in life is inevitable, and you always have the choice to embrace change and grow or resist it and get stuck. A positive change in mindset can help make you more understanding in life and teach you to embrace new things as they come. This helps prepare and propel you for the future. 

Positive change is how you discover yourself, and explore your thoughts and feelings on situations in life. Many of us fear change, but having the ability to embrace change with open arms could really make a positive shift to having an extraordinary life. 

Implementing positive changes in your life will help you to:

  • Become calmer and more positive when handling challenges
  • Remove negative energy from your mind in exchange for positive thoughts
  • Strengthen your relationships while developing as an individual
  • Become more flexible to new situations and environments

Small changes = Big impacts Cumulative power of small, steady changes in your daily routines

Ever heard the saying, “Slow and steady wins the race.”? 

This applies to several aspects of life, including positive change. Sometimes when we think of making changes for a better life, we believe a grand, drastic shift is what is needed. While this may sometimes be necessary for specific circumstances, it can actually be more effective to make small, steady changes.

Smaller changes are easier to implement and stick to, and you can start making these changes right away. 

6 small positive changes to make right now for a fulfilling life

  1. Embrace positive thoughts – Thoughts become feelings, which hold a certain energy. The trouble is that negativity is all around us, and you cannot always control the situations you face. It is also easy to get sucked into the negative vortex. What you can control however, is your perspective and your reaction to them. By reprogramming your mind and embracing positive thoughts, you can control your feelings and reactions to the surrounding situations and lift your vibration or energy, rather than deplete it.
  2. Start your day 30 minutes earlier with a positive morning routine. Let’s be honest, most of us set our alarms so that we have just enough time to get ready for work, or get the kids off to school and start the day. We begin the day in a rush, which continues throughout the day until bedtime.  By giving yourself that extra 30 minutes in the morning, you’ll be able to ease into the day with time for exercise, meditation, breakfast, or even time to really plan the day. This saves you from feeling overwhelmed, rushed and unprepared, which can lead to an unproductive day.
  3. Be comfortable with uncertainty – Uncertain situations will happen because change is constant in life. Learn to accept that you cannot control everything or predict what may happen. Move from fear of the unknown to faith and acceptance. Practice this daily.
  4. Set boundaries – If you don’t set careful boundaries, people will take advantage of you. This will lead to burnout, feeling overwhelmed, and sometimes being underappreciated. Your boundaries are a sign of respect for both yourself and others. It is about deep self love.
  5. Set realistic expectations – Unrealistic expectations will only set you up for major disappointment, and this isn’t fair to yourself or others. Keep your expectations within reasonable limits, especially as it concerns other people. 
  6. Invest in yourself – You should be your first investment. Your health and wellbeing should always come first. Investing in mindset and business coaching could help you to begin going in the right direction to the best version of yourself. Juie Cass’s passion was to write an entire book about this and it has since hit Best-seller lists. Her book ‘Me First’ has people saying “Loving your life changing book” and “If you are ready to courageously step into your next level of empowerment, this book is for you. The world needs this now and thank you for leading the way julie.” Change the stigma around ‘me first’ and understand that not only should this be a priority but a necessity. This is how you will create your biggest impact in life as your capacity will improve.

It’s time to start living a fulfilling life. You deserve it! If you need help, we’re here to help. Book a call to get started.

Making Yourself a Priority

Me First Bestselling book - make yourself a priority

“You become a better person by sacrificing yourself, putting your own needs second and other people’s needs first.” Does this statement sound familiar? It is a lie we have been told that we need to do this in order to be a better person. Nothing could be farther from the truth. 

It is time to let go of the stigma around putting “Me First”. 

It is no one else’s job to make you happy. You are the only one who can do this for you. So then the same holds true for others.  It is never your job to prioritize someone else before yourself, especially their happiness. You will fail every time as they are the only ones who can do it for themselves. 

What Does it Mean to Make Yourself a Priority?

Making yourself a priority is often confused with being selfish. Can you accomplish your dreams while you are drowning? Self-prioritization simply means putting yourself, your goals, and your visions first, because no one else can do it for you. It means letting go of the distractions that stop you from doing this and telling yourself “I am a priority” until you believe it. 

Creating a positive change in our lives and how we exist with others is crucial. To achieve this, one must be aligned to one’s core values, stay motivated, stay emotionally and physically resilient, and maintain a happy life. Oftentimes, however, we focus so much on delivering these values and making a difference in those around us, that we forget the most crucial element to success: our physical and mental health.

Making yourself a priority means you focus on these key elements of success. You prioritize what makes you happy, keeping your health and mental well-being at the forefront. It means focusing on the things that give you energy rather than what depletes you. It means upgrading the internal dialogue to that of deep self love and encouragement rather than self criticism. It means being intentional about prioritizing your happiness and loving yourself enough to choose happiness in life, from your career to your love interests to your daily habits.

Why Is it Important to Make Yourself a Priority?

Life will always have its ups and downs and the most important thing that gets us through is our perspective. When we do not prioritize ourselves it is very easy to not only lose perspective but also get angry and resentful. 

You need energy, bandwidth, and mental wellness to wake up every morning to seize the day. You can only achieve this state if you are focused on yourself and your goals. Most people get frustrated, stressed, and even fall into depression when they can’t accomplish their goals – mostly because they are busy taking care of others.

When you make yourself a priority, you build clarity around the boundaries. You can easily say ‘no’ even when the situation may be compelling you to say ‘yes.’ Agreeing to something that could affect your focus eats away at something inside of you – but not if you set clear boundaries.

Furthermore, prioritizing yourself allows you to stay true to yourself. It means you are constantly doing self checks of what feels good and when it doesn’t feel good it is a sign to pivot or gain a different perspective. When we stay true to ourselves we are able to keep on track with what lights us up and what gives us excitement. We also are able to have ample energy for the people and things we love because we are not constantly draining ourselves. 

Making Yourself a Priority Boosts your Productivity

Disorganization, which comes when you feel like you are being pulled in multiple directions, diverges your energy and focus, affecting productivity. You can create plans with a focus on specific paths to follow, which helps you achieve your goals when you put yourself first. Making decisions and acting organized enables you to focus your energy on a specific task, which leads to improved productivity.

10 Ways to Make Yourself a Priority

Here are 10 ideas you can follow to make yourself a priority.

  1. Set boundaries and keep them
  2. Have a consistent morning routine to set you up for success
  3. Understand that self-care is not a luxury – it’s a necessity
  4. Set aside time for yourself and mark it on the calendar
  5. Put more effort and value into your physical health – sleep well, eat well and exercise more.
  6. Tune into your feelings. They will always be the perfect guide to letting you know you are on track because it will feel good. 
  7. Listen to the “Self-talk” and upgrade the dialogue to more positive talk when necessary. 
  8. You are unique, so stop comparing yourself to others – follow a growth mindset instead.
  9. Always set aside time for appreciation – let yourself feel the things you are most grateful for.
  10. Focus on what is in your control only. The rest will drain your energy.

If you feel like you have been working too hard to impress others, it’s time to change that. It does not mean becoming selfish – just working more on yourself and ignoring the fear of what others may say or think. Don’t ignore your personal needs when striving to achieve your goals: self-prioritization = a happier and more fulfilling life. 

Remember: one key thing is the more we prioritize our happiness the bigger impact we have on those around us. 

Need more tips on how to put yourself first? Check out my book “Me First” to better understand how to prioritize yourself.

Why outsource your corporate wellness programs?

Why outsource your corporate wellness programs

Employee burnout is a real thing. Nothing is worse than having stressed-out, demotivated, and overburdened employees. Prioritizing the mental and emotional health and wellness of your employees makes an amazing difference in the office environment and the overall productivity of your workforce. 

This is why corporate wellness programs were created. 

What is a corporate wellness program?

Corporate wellness programs are designed to provide employees with a support structure that encourages holistic wellbeing outside their job objectives and evaluations. These types of programs offer health and wellness solutions that speak to the physical, mental, and spiritual health of the employees. Research shows that nearly 3 in 5 employees reported an increase in negative feelings and work-related stress since 2020. 

Aside from the pandemic which has caused a general increase in anxiety among persons, studies also show that long work hours can also contribute to these negative work-related feelings. In fact, it was proven that extended working hours are directly linked to stress, depression, and suicide ideation among young employees between ages 20-35. 

Another study revealed that not only are Americans working longer hours these days, but they are also working longer hours than nearly everyone else in the entire world. The study showed that: 

  • Nearly 134 countries have laws that set a maximum length of the workweek, while the U.S. does not.
  • Workers in the U.S. work an average of 1,767 hours per year, as opposed to countries that are a part of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) which work an average of 1,687 hours.
  • U.S. workers work 435 more hours per year than German workers, 400 more hours per year than the United Kingdom (UK) workers, 365 more hours per year than French workers, and 169 more hours per year than Japanese workers. 

America has a culture of working hard, and while that has its positives, we also cannot ignore the downside to this as well, especially over prolonged periods of time. 

Canada has also opted for making changes to the workforce as a means of increasing employee retention. According to a recent survey by Mercer Canada, 54% of Canadian employees have adopted a hybrid work environment, as a way of prioritizing their employees’ mental health. 

The importance of corporate wellness in an organization

Due to these shocking statistics, and the evident effects of the current work environment that employees are experiencing, many HR departments have taken to implementing and offering programs that target mental and emotional health. Many hire professionals who are able to customize programs for their employees to help counteract work pressures and help them to reconnect with their inner selves. 

A thorough, well-executed program has many benefits, including the ability to:

  • Improve the emotional health and wellness of employees
  • Fortify positive work routines and practices 
  • Help prevent and avoid chronic illnesses associated with burnout
  • Improve social connectivity within the workplace
  • Encourage better, healthier communication among staff
  • Increase productivity levels
  • Establish and increase trust among team members and staff
  • Decrease staff churn rate 

So, now that you know the benefits of corporate wellness programs in an organization, how exactly do you go about implementing it?

 Benefits of outsourcing corporate wellness experts

While some HR departments may want to tackle these programs themselves, there is proven benefit to outsourcing experts in the field for these programs. The fact is, developing these kinds of programs requires extensive time and effort. The existing resources that are available may not be able to handle the dedicated additional effort to get it done effectively. 

A successful program requires a precise blend of mental, emotional, and overall wellness approaches, that takes the company’s office culture into consideration. The program also needs to be able to adapt and evolve to keep pace with growth and new wellness standards to meet the employees’ needs. In other words, in order for the program to be effective, expert resources are necessary. 

Additionally, there are some benefits that cannot be accessed with the use of an internal system. 

  1. Precise employee data collection – The feedback and data collected from the employees is the only way to develop a customized program specific to their needs. Some HR managers may not feel comfortable enough to ask the relevant questions necessary to collect this data. Especially since this involves the collection of sensitive, identifiable information of their employees.  An outside party can collect this data without bias, and is able to then tailor specific programs for the needs that arise.
  2. Staff Transparency – The fact is, just as some HR personnel may not feel comfortable collecting certain information from employees, employees may not feel comfortable being open with HR. The fear of bias and possible repercussions that can occur from disclosing sensitive information may prevent employees from being transparent with their issues. A third party is able to offer a discreet method where staff can share personal details and feedback about the company, which will allow the program to be more specific in its targeting of these concerns.
  3. Meeting where it matters – The truth is, HR professionals are unable to give the dedicated time and attention needed for staying on top of mental and behavioral practices and standards. Information around wellness is better assimilated with expert advice. Outsourced professionals are able to use these programs to bridge any gaps between HR and any resources they have and employees and their needs. 

Employees recognize the results and feel important. A staff that feels empowered and elevated will reflect in the overall performance and productivity of the organization. The overall wellness of your employees’ matters. Providing them with the tools and tangible steps to achieve their goals and restore inner unity will positively impact the organization. 

Learn about our employee wellness programs and book a call if you are ready to invest in your team’s wellbeing.

Breathing Techniques for Stress Management

Woman seen breathing with sky and water background

Unclench your jaw, drop your shoulders, take a deep breath and slowly release. Did you notice that your body was tense just now, before following those simple steps? This is what stress does to your body. 

Sometimes it may feel as though everything around you is causing you stress. Whether it be your job, school, family life, or even the news. Anything can become a stress trigger if not managed properly. The last few years especially have been particularly challenging for most people. 

Stress completely shifts your entire being and causes instability within your mind, body, and soul. It messes with your overall productivity and wellbeing. Being able to implement useful techniques to help you relieve stress when you begin to feel tense, will restore balance to your physical and mental health. Let’s take a look at what stress management entails and some techniques you can apply in your daily life. 

What is stress management?

Stress management refers to a set of tactics and procedures that can help you identify your triggers and deal with stressful events in a way that maintains your life’s balance.

Stress management includes: 

  • Learning and enhancing your problem-solving skills, to overcome difficult situations. 
  • Strengthening your ability to handle unfortunate issues in life
  • Implement relaxation techniques such as deep breathing and meditation to recenter yourself during times of high stress.

Why deep breathing is one of the best ways to lower stress in the body

Breathing exercises are a powerful tool for relieving stress and anxiety. Think back to the start of the blog and how you felt after following those simple instructions. The difference was evident just after one deep breath, right? This is because when you breathe deeply, it sends a message to your brain to relax and calm down, which then sends the same message to your body. It is also one of the best ways to bring yourself into the present moment.

This communication between your body and brain restores harmony and brings peace back to your being. There are different breathing exercises that you can use in your stress management. 

Some of our favorites are belly breathing, box breathing, and cleansing breathing. All three of these exercises engage your body as well as your mind in an effort to restore balance. 

How to do Belly Breathing

Belly breathing is one of the breathing techniques that you can use to help manage stress. Here’s how: 

  1. Place one hand on your belly, just below your rib cage.
  2. Inhale deeply through your nose for five counts, bring the air past your lungs to the belly, allow the belly to expand like a balloon.
  3. Hold your breath for two counts.
  4. Exhale through your nose slowly, for 7 counts. You should feel your belly contract when you exhale. 
  5. Repeat.

Did you feel the stress and tension begin to leave your body? Repeat this technique for as long as you need to feel recentered. 

How to do Box Breathing

Box breathing, also known as square breathing, is another simple yet effective breathing technique that you can use. It takes its name from the fact that you count to four with each breath. This count distracts your mind while calming your nervous system and returning your breathing to a relaxed pattern.

  1. For this technique, you may sit, stand or lay flat on your back. Inhale and exhale through the nose.
  2. Inhale, counting slowly in your mind for four counts, bring the breath deep into the body.
  3. Hold your breath for another four counts. Try to avoid releasing the breath before the four seconds are up.
  4. Slowly exhale for four counts. 
  5. Hold the breath at the bottom for four counts.
  6. Inhale and repeat for four counts.
  7. Continue as many times as you need. 

How to do Cleansing Breathing

The final breathing exercise we will look at is the Cleansing Breath. The cleansing breath is awesome for relieving tension in your neck, shoulders, and body overall. Aside from breathing deeply, the cleansing breath is a way to get you to focus your energy on releasing the stress while inviting love and positive energy into your body. 

Engage your mind and spirit as you do this exercise.

  1. Breathe in deeply through your nose, slowly taking in as much air as you comfortably can. As you breathe in, think about the love you are letting into your space. 
  2. Visualize the clean, positive energy that is entering your body. 
  3. Exhale, through your mouth quickly, expelling any negative energy, clearing your mind of contrary thoughts and releasing the stress along with it. 
  4. Repeat this exercise as many times as necessary to restore balance, remembering always to engage the mind as you do the body. 

Now that you have these tools to help you with stress management, it’s time to start using them in your daily life. Stress doesn’t have to overcome or overwhelm you. With the use of these breathing exercises, stress can begin to become more manageable, and you can reclaim your life again. Remember, you got this! 

The Positive Change Group is all about helping to elevate the whole you, so you can truly become your best self in every area of your life. Find out more about our offerings and products.

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