May 24, 2019

11 easy ways to improve your well-being

Check out these tips to make your workday healthier, happier and more connected
June is Employee WellBeing Month — time to take care of you.
June is Employee WellBeing Month — time to take care of you. Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

June doesn’t just mark the first official days of summer — it’s also Employee Wellbeing Month, and there are countless actions you can take to help improve your physical, mental and social health. We couldn’t possibly list them all, but here are 11 things you can do that will have a positive impact on your well-being at work:

1. Get moving

Active Living offers a variety of sports and fitness classes and training workshops to satisfy a wide range of interests. You could also start a walking group — there are a number of pathways to explore during lunch hour.

2. Have a walking meeting

Some meetings don’t need to be in the boardroom — if size and meeting content permits (not confidential in nature), hold your next meeting outside while you walk.

3. Get your diet assessed

Homewood Health offers free nutrition counselling to faculty and staff. Call 1-800-663-1142 for nutrition counselling focused on a number of concerns related to diet including: eating on the go, heart health, diabetes, weight management, and more.

4. Pause for a mental health minute

Raise awareness about mental health and the resources available to support faculty and staff at your next meeting — you can even use these Workplace Mental Health Minute PowerPoint slides at meetings, presentations and other events.

5. Take the stairs

Take the stairs when you can, or build in some daily detours that make the walk between buildings a little longer. If you take transit, hop off a stop early and make up the distance on foot. If you drive, park at the end of the lot furthest from your building.

6. Brown bag it

Not only does packing a lunch from home save money, it also helps you control the nutritional and caloric content of your midday meal.

7. Enrol in the Working Mind

Working Mind training increases awareness about mental health, reduces the stigma of mental illnesses and offers information about the resources available to help you or someone you care about maintain positive mental health.

8. Join or start a Wellness Committee

Join your department's Wellness Committee. If your faculty or unit does not have a Wellness Committee, discuss the possibility of starting one with your leadership. 

9. Host a healthy potluck

Organize a healthy potluck for your team. Encourage participants to include a variety of fruits and vegetables in their dishes.

10. Take a break from your phone

Staying in constant contact with your smartphone doesn’t always seem like a smart decision. Recharge your batteries with a little time away from technology. If your university email is attached to your phone, talk to your manager about setting regular unplugged hours, when you will not be actively checking email.

11. Volunteer on campus

Take advantage of the many opportunities to volunteer on campus, including convocation and the SU Food Bank. Volunteering connects you to a wide variety of people from across campus. Check with your manager first to ensure operational needs are met.

A full list of internal and external resources is available on the WellBeing and WorkLife website.

The University of Calgary’s Campus Mental Health Strategy is a bold commitment to the importance of mental health and well-being of our university family. Our vision is to be a community where we care for each other, learn and talk about mental health and well-being, receive support as needed, and individually and collectively realize our full potential. 

Engagement is one of 13 factors illustrated by the National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace (National Standard). The University of Calgary is a recipient of the Excellence Canada Mental Health at Work Silver Level Certification in this area. Visit WellBeing and WorkLife to learn more about the implementation of the National Standard at the University of Calgary and to learn about existing programs and resources that support each of the 13 factors.