It’s National Relaxation Day!

I know – there’s a ‘National Day’ for everything these days! Thank goodness they’re not all Bank Holidays or nothing would get done!

So, what’s National Relaxation Day all about?

In 1985, American 4th Grader Sean Moeller founded National Relaxation Day. In the States, 4th Grade equates to the UK Year 5, so this forward-thinking young man was just 9 or 10 years old at the time. When he was interviewed by Valerie Monson for The Des Moines Register, Sean suggested that a day of doing nothing of any real value would be beneficial to people’s health. Unsurprisingly given his age, he did not consider work or cleaning to play any part in relaxation!
Since then, our lives have become increasingly fast-paced and it is a medically accepted fact that insufficient rest and recovery is detrimental to physical, emotional and mental health.

What can you do as an employer?

I’m not for one minute suggesting that you, and your team, down tools and sleep all day. However, there are ways that you can keep your business running and still mark National Relaxation Day. In fact, why not use it to kick off an increased drive to improve wellbeing in the workplace!

Four ways to welcome some ‘relaxation’ (for National Relaxation Day or indeed, any other day of the year) into your business:

  1. Get moving: These days lots of schools get their pupils to complete a ‘Daily Mile’ (not necessarily a mile depending on the age of the children!). Why not take a leaf out of their books and get everyone out for a walk. It doesn’t have to be a route-march, just get everyone up from their desks, moving and getting closer to hitting their 10,000 steps for the day.
  2. Take a break: Encourage everyone to take the breaks they are entitled to. Far too often people stay at their desks to eat their lunch and inevitably end up glued to their screen. Maybe they’re undertaking a bit of personal web browsing or online shopping, but maybe they’re still working! Either way, it’s not healthy!
  3. Remind your team to use their annual leave: When work is busy, you often find that the best staff are reluctant to take time off as they worry they’ll be letting you down or that the business will suffer. As a business owner managing workloads and accommodating annual leave can be a headache. However, it comes with the territory so it’s something you must learn to do effectively. Even your best staff will be no good to you or the business if they’re run down, burnt out and stressed! If you need more help with managing annual leave in your business, this blog post may be useful to you.
  4. Bring some R&R into the office: Why not treat your staff to a little R&R in the workplace? It’s no longer ‘odd’ for employers to invite wellbeing providers into the workplace. Maybe you could treat everyone to a 20-minute neck and shoulder massage at their desk?
Looking to the future

No matter how you decide to mark National Relaxation Day, it’s well worth looking for ways to make workplace wellbeing a ‘thing’.

Your staff are your greatest asset, but only if they are fit, healthy, engaged and feel valued. You’ll be amazed at the motivational power of something like a monthly workplace massage, or a healthy fruit delivery to give you just a couple of examples.

If you’d like more ideas or feel you would benefit from some advice on how to implement wellbeing initiatives in your business, give me a call and I would be happy to help.

Contact the office of Kate Underwood HR on 02380 025160 or [email protected]

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