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  • Esther Orioli 6:49 am on February 7, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    3 takeaways from stress research in 2013 

    Gallup recently announced the results of its 2013 State of the American Workplace report, which found that stress continues to be a pervasive influence in the American workplace. Seven out of 10 respondents admitted to being either disengaged or miserable at work, and nearly two-thirds cited their jobs as a significant source of anxiety. Those figures are no coincidence: stressed out workers are less productive and less motivated. In fact, the more we research its effects, the more we learn just how ubiquitous stress can be. 

    1. Morale can drive profit

    A positive workplace culture can have a strong effect on not only how employees view the company, but also how they view each other. Healthy workers are more prolific and happier, and devoting active resources to fostering emotional IQ can pay strong dividends, by promoting teamwork and encouraging idea-sharing. When asked in a Pulse survey, more than three-fourths of respondents agreed that their jobs were positively affected by managers who took this into account.

    2. Stress can affect physical and mental health

    Not only have researchers linked stress to poorer cardiovascular health, they've also identified a correlation with depression, proving that it can have a negative impact on mind and body. This also suggests that programs that just target the secondary symptoms are shortsighted. To really enact long term positive change in your employee health and corporate culture, stress management has to be a priority. 

    3. Well-being is a worthwhile goal

    For too long, the business community presumed that emotional and physical well-being were irrelevant to performance, or, at best, secondary. Now, managers are starting to get a much keener understanding of the ways it's actually an axiomatic driver of productivity and profitability. According to CIPD, a UK Human Resources organization, in the last year alone, there was a 20 percent increase in the number of companies using stress reduction as its own performance metric. 

    Essi Systems understands the many ways that negative stress can manifest itself and undermine an otherwise high-performing organization. That's why we offer proven, business-tested human capital solutions specifically designed to help companies target employee stress and build workforce resiliency. Essi's 21 Day Club technology platform provides individual and organizational stress and resiliency assessments and continuous self-improvement tools so every employee can measure and manage individual stressors to build their energy, health and performance.

  • Esther Orioli 7:55 am on January 31, 2014 Permalink | Reply  

    Study: Americans acknowledge stress, yet struggle to reduce it 

    For most people, the problem of stress in the workplace is not getting any better. In a recent Stress in America survey, just 20 percent said that their stress levels had decreased in the past year. For the overwhelmingly majority, it had either stayed the same or increased.

    And it's not for lack of trying.

    Over the past half-decade, 60 percent of Americans have tried to reduce their stress. However, most of those people did not adequately do so, despite many acknowledging that their levels are higher than what they would consider healthy.

    Just 37 percent say that they are doing an excellent or very good job at managing stress. This, despite the fact that nearly two thirds believe that it affects their physical and/or mental health. This has lead to a variety of unhealthy side effects , such as poor sleep (42 percent), poor diet (36 percent) or skipped meals (27 percent). 

    Part of the problem is that the stress management techniques they use are ultimately not addressing the root causes of their stress. Thirteen percent admitted to using alcohol as a coping mechanism, and over one third reported that they watch more than two hours of television per day in order to help cope with stress. 

    At Essi Systems, stress and resiliency is our business. We're a human capital solutions company with a keen, research-based, business-tested understanding of the problems that stress can cause people and cost businesses. That's why we provide stress mastery and resiliency building solutions that are proven to help employees target their stressors and improve energy, health and performance.

  • Esther Orioli 12:29 pm on August 14, 2012 Permalink | Reply  

    How do YOU measure resiliency? 

    At a time in the world where everyone is having to COPE in a capital letter kind of way, resiliency has become the new buzz word for health and wellness and the prescription for getting through during tough times both at work and at home.

    As the creator of Resiliency Map®, a resiliency assessment used by major corporations worldwide to help their people, I am often asked how knowing your resiliency “score” really makes a difference in the day-to-day ways we handle pressures and persevere to live another day. Some leaders I have worked with think that when bad things happen we should just pick ourselves up and push on. They want their people to stop being cry babies and get the job done! If it were only that simple.

    Forcing ourselves to hang in there, again and again, without a break or some tool to manage during distressful times, leads to increasing the rate of wear and tear on the body, mind, emotions and spirit. After awhile, i.e. months or years, of keeping a stiff upper lip it is no wonder we’re a little bundle of ailments – back pain, headaches, anxiety, frustration, getting less done and using more effort to do it. That being said, how can accurately measuring your resiliency really help you have a better, easier life?

    Having a scientifically sound assessment gives you information. It shows your unique strengths and personal vulnerabilities. It tells you if you’re eating too much junk, getting stuck in old habits, or acting out through anger or passive aggression when things go wrong. It tells you if you’re not making your needs a priority so you can bolster yourself to be present and successful in the ways you want to be in your life. I have often said that “if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” This has never been more true.

    Based on years of research and data studies, my definition of resiliency is this: The ability to come back after disappointments, failures or setbacks, to be adaptable and flexible, to renew your sense of vitality and reengineer yourself based on life experiences. These three prongs of resiliency give you everything you need to thrive, not just cope, in a world filled with chaos and uncertainty.

    How do YOU define resiliency?

  • Esther Orioli 12:19 pm on January 11, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , resilience, resiliency, , ,   

    Skinny people don’t have stress 

    What a ridiculous statement to make! But recently I was speaking at a conference on health and wellness and it sure sounded like that’s what they meant. The answer to everything was lose weight, stop smoking, eat right and exercise.

    What advice do they have for people who are struggling with chronic illness, too much distress at work, or dealing with real grief and depression? You guessed it – lose weight, stop smoking, eat right and exercise.

    So what do skinny, non-smoking, fit, healthy people do about stress? It all points out just how stress illiterate we really are.

    Stress is a very complex subject. It’s not just a health issue or a diet issue or a weight issue. It’s also a medical issue and a legal issue and a productivity issue and family issue and quality of life issue. Stress owns its own domain and as such requires a whole new way of understanding and dealing with its complexities. So when it comes to stress we’ve got to move beyond deep breathing and broccoli into a new definition of stress management.

    As a stress expert I explain that this most complicated of issues can be addressed in the simplest of ways: the best way to manage stress is to shorten the amount of time that passes between when you notice your distress and when you respond to it. When the body goes into a “Red Alert” – the natural stress response to real or imagined danger – everything in your body changes. From the hormones that are released into your bloodstream to the sharpness of your eyesight and the acuity of your hearing, your body is trying to give you a fighting chance to survive the attack.

    That attack can be your boss piling on another project with a tight deadline, or you struggling with the issues of aging parents, maybe a co-worker is not pulling her weight or you have to have a difficult conversation with a friend. Whatever it is, your body responds internally to the threat even if your mouth or your actions never do.

    So, you might need to lose weight, stop smoking, eat right and exercise but if I were you, I’d focus on listening to my body and responding to those “red alerts” as soon as you can. Who knows, giving your body what it needs just might make you skinny.

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