Wellness and Safety

by Randy Rowett

The topic of Wellness is increasingly on the minds of many employers, service organizations, offices, companies, corporations and many other occupational settings.
The increased pressures on workers are the result of a variety of factors. Among these are career, commuting, personal relationships, family, and financial, emotional, mental and social, and physical health.

The problems with increased turnovers of staff, absenteeism, political tensions in high profile careers, downsizing, restructuring and phasing out of jobs, means that some people have more tasks and duties placed upon them in their lives or at their place of employment.

Wellness is concerned with the total holistic aspect of the human body. The categories of genetics, lifestyle factors, occupations, career and environment, and family categories all play a part in a person’s wellness.  These can impact on safety of an individual or others on our roads, in residences, in the workplace and in the community.

The human body reacts to various stressors or triggers. Sometimes, when a person is subject to or witness to a terrible tragedy or accident, fire, assault, various severe crimes or even a terrorist act, the result may be post traumatic stress disorder.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorders (PTSD’s) are exhibited through a variety of signs and symptoms. Persons who are subject to these terrible incidents or acts can retain memory of these for long periods of time. A person may feel he or she is strong and can overcome those terrible experiences. Sometimes, people repress these thoughts and workers, family; friends notice behavioral changes or attitude adjustments. These adjustments or changes in behaviors are found to be strange or unusual by the persons known to the victim.

Severe stress manifests itself in insomnia, digestive problems, eating too much or insufficient intake of food, or improper diets with too much sugar or carbohydrates, increased use of alcohol, drugs, caffeine or gambling –or other addictive situations.

Panic or fear or phobias may occur and develop.

Sometimes triggers cause these feelings to be released again. Counseling or Psychotherapy often helps a person suffering from severe stress to a traumatic event.

A person who is not able to sleep, and can't get the benefit of a deep and REM sleep, is subject to be careless at work, on the roads, or while using machinery. The result is the potential of accidents to co-workers, colleagues and persons with whom the victim may be affiliated, related or connected.

There are situations that impact on everyone, such as a death of a loved one, family relationship problems, tax or financial situations, loss of a job, and evens vacations are known to be stressful to some, who just can not leave the work at the office.

The North American diet has become one of fast food, super-sized highly refined, simple carbohydrates, and saturated and trans fats.  People are always on the go, due to hectic lifestyles, and try to eat on the run. There is a lack of exercise problem in our society. People fight for the parking spot closest to the mall entrance. Hostilities rise, and people get angry, trying for a little space and privacy, and wonder why they should have to walk about 10-15 yards to the store. Obesity is a major concern. People need at least a minimum of 15-20 minutes of exercise two to three times a week minimum based on their capability. Of course, more is better based on personal health and capability.

You see the result son our roads. People are beeping horns, racing trying to get to their destination, and making rude gestures to other drivers. This is stress and anger.

All stress is not bad. Some are positive such as challenges like sporting events and completing a project to your satisfaction.

The entire Wellness concept is much needed. A person can take the time to practice time management skills, logging tasks and using a daily calendar.  They do not have to answer every non-vital phone call or e-mail. Projects can be prioritized and the less important tasks can be followed up later.

People need to spend a little time for themselves. That means doing something relaxing or what they like doing. This can be walking the dog, hiking, meditating, and engaging in aromatherapy, painting, reading or other activities.

As someone who often lectures on wellness, stress management and natural health, I know there are some positive interventions out there for creating a perfect work and life balance.

Each person must take care of their needs; these are nutrition, rest, sleep, growth, development, shelter, peace and career.

Create a wellness package or program for you. Reduce injuries, illnesses, and safety hazards for yourself and others.