Think about it.
We know that making a loop (or two) around the office a few times a day can improve health. As can doing lunges while waiting for your food to heat up in the microwave. Or jumping up and down at your desk a few times a day.
So why don’t people do it?
It could be that they don’t want to sweat (even a tiny bit), don't want to be judged by others about looking silly, or they think leaving their desks makes them appear less productive.
So how can you encourage employees to do small things that improve their wellness and ahem, productivity?
I spent 13 years of my career at an employer who encouraged, supported and celebrated wellness. People doing loops around the office were met with high fives and many strong work relationships were formed in this manner.
The company leadership made it a priority to make moving and eating well “normal”. It didn’t happen all at once (and they invested a good chunk of money into it which they get back in health care savings). At lunch, the workout room was full (they had to expand it) and groups got together to walk outside. Production crews started their day with light movement and stretches. It was more unusual to be “inactive” and eat poorly than be active. Company catered food was delicious and healthy when provided.
Of course you don’t have to spend buckets of money on programs to make this happen. It comes down to culture. All of us can relate to feeling “too busy” to get up and move around during the day. But are we really? Also, for those who chose to move, often, instead of being congratulated as great examples for others, the attitude is more like “must be nice to have so much extra time during the day”. Even if that movement is during breaks or is shorter than a bathroom break.
Wellness is a journey of a thousand steps, but well worth it. Start by getting into a groove for what works with your schedule and your company. Building a culture of wellness is certainly not easy, but it can be forged through any idividual getting up and moving.