Group Company Secretary- Asset Management Company
A couple of weeks ago DMJ adopted an initiative to implement a “wellness day” where we had time away from the stresses of work to recharge and refocus. One of the supporting initiatives that came out of this was the “happiness hour” where we book out an hour (like we so often do with our Business Development power hours) and focus on an activity that would help relieve stress and lift our moods.
The “happiness hour” varied from person to person – the time itself wasn’t necessarily that important (an hour is quite a sensible amount of time to make something a habit and, most importantly, works well for the purpose of creating an alliteration). Without going too new-age therapy, it’s important to build in time, ideally on a weekly basis, where you do have scope for self-reflection and self-reward.
Put simply, we asked the team to think of a wholesome activity that was a little out of their regular routine (to prevent binge-watching on Netflix) and would help lift their mood. We stressed that gentle exercise might be a good avenue to explore, as could something that sparked creativity or learning in an area. Again, something new and engaging was encouraged, perhaps an interest which had as of yet been unexplored.
Feedback from the “happiness hour” was overwhelmingly positive. One of the big improvements was in the reduction of stress and a regaining of perspective. I think the challenge lies in structuring this into your week, as although there were tangible benefits felt, part of the enjoyment lay in the spontaneity. We did find a list of useful (and in parts questionable) activities from the Department of Health of Western Australia.
Some of the memorable activities the from the team:
- Flotation tanks
- Life drawing
- Cake baking
With the rise of remote working and the increased disconnect resulting, it’s more important than ever that we make consistent choices to maintain our individual mental health. Happiness Hour is just one of many positive steps an organisation can make to help ensure the well-being of its staff. If you’re looking for a boost for your team, please contact me to discuss some other successful methods we’ve used in the past.