4 easy ways for employees to adopt healthier habits

Wellness programs may not be successful if they just provide workers with access to a fitness center and conduct risk assessments. Adopting a healthy lifestyle can be difficult for many employees, and they may be setting themselves up for failure if they try to make too many changes at once. Bad habits may creep back if wellness programs don’t offer workers the resources they need to maintain a workout schedule or nutritious eating into the long term.

Employers may want to equip workers with strategies that support their well-being goals. Here are four of the easiest tips employees may incorporate into their daily lives:

1. Invest in sleep
One of the first steps to becoming healthier is to get the recommended amount of sleep every day. Numerous studies have found getting less than seven hours of sleep a night can interfere with a person’s physical and mental health, according to an article by workplace columnist Anita Bruzzese for The Fast Track blog on Quickbase Intuit. By just receiving enough sleep, individuals can decrease their stress levels and improve their immune systems.

2. Replace one bad habit with a better one
Becoming healthier isn’t a quick process – it takes time and patience. Choosing one unhealthy habit (like sitting in front of the couch or eating a hamburger) and replacing it with a better option (such as working out or having a salad) can make a difference in a person’s overall success, life coach Louise Thompson suggests in an article for Live Well 360. Wellness programs may encourage workers every week or so to take one of their bad behaviors and supplant it with the healthier option.

3. Take one 30-minute walk
Walking has been found to be a beneficial exercise by researchers at Stanford University, according to Woman’s Day. Walking just 30 minutes more every day might be enough to lower a person’s risk of heart disease and other chronic conditions, such as diabetes. Employers may want to provide workers with pedometers to help them keep track of how many steps they take, or encourage employees to take group walks to assist staff in reaching the 30-minute walking goal.

4. Create accountability
One of the biggest reasons why people don’t succeed in reaching their well-being objectives is because they don’t have others to help keep them accountable for their actions. Thompson recommended each individual become aware of what motivates him or her to lose weight or eat healthfully. From keeping pictures of motivators on the fridge to asking a co-worker to check in once a week, employees may become more accountable for their bad behaviors and stick with healthy alternatives.

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