STRESS & Good Leaders Model Well-being Practices #TakeTimeOff

“Help Your Team Manage Stress, Anxiety, and Burnout” by Rich Fernandez, Harvard Business Review, 1/21/16.

… Model and encourage well-being practices.

Worker stress levels are rising, with over half of the global workforce (53%) reporting that they are closer to burnout than they were just five years ago, according to a Regus Group survey of over 22,000 business people across 100 countries. And while stress can be contagious, the converse is also true: when any member of a team experiences well-being, the effect seems to spread across the entire team. According to a recent Gallup research report that surveyed 105 teams over six three-month periods, individual team members who reported experiencing well-being were 20% more likely to have other team members who also reported thriving six months later. Takeaway: understand and prioritize activities that promote well-being for yourself and your team. They could include such things as offering personal development tools, like mindfulness and resilience training; explicitly encouraging people to take time for exercise or other renewal activities, such as walking meetings; or building buffer time into deliverables calendars so that people can work flexibly and at a manageable pace.

Allow time to disconnect outside of work.

According to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, workers around the world spend 34 to 48 hours at work each week on average, and many engage in work or related activities after business hours. McKinsey Quarterlysuggests that “always-on, multitasking work environments are killing productivity, dampening creativity, and making us unhappy.” And one of the most significant findings in employee pulse surveys that I’ve seen in companies large and small is that employees have an exceptionally hard time disconnecting from work…

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SABBATH & HBR study finds having more vacation time will force you to be more efficient #HarvardBusinessReviewo

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “This Harvard Business Review research found that employees who have more vacation days (such as in Europe where employees typically get 28-41 days) makes employees not necessarily less stressed, but it does seem to make them more efficient. It seems there is a positive correlation between having more vacation days and being more efficient on the days when you are in the office. Here is a sun native quote from the article, ‘Perhaps instead of telling your head of HR that you need more vacation time for your well-being, you can simply tell him or her that having more vacation time will force you to be more efficient’.”

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NAPPING & Research Links Naps to Greater Work Efficiency

The Efficacy of Naps as a Fatigue Countermeasure: A Meta-Analytic Integration

by James E. Driskell, Florida Maxima Corporation, Winter Park, Florida and Brian Mullen, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York, Human Factors: The Journal of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Summer 2005 vol. 47 no. 2 360-377.


Modern requirements for extended operations in aviation, transportation, the military, and industry have led to extensive research on countermeasures to mitigate the adverse effects of fatigue. The goals of this research were to (a) summarize and integrate existing research on naps as a fatigue countermeasure using metaanalysis, (b) identify the strength and significance of the effects of naps on performance and feelings of fatigue, and (c) identify factors that may moderate the effects of napping as a fatigue countermeasure.

  • The results of these analyses can be used to predict nap efficacy as a function of length of the nap and the postnap interval.
  • The results of these analyses also suggest an approach to work design that takes into account the optimal effects of naps as a fatigue countermeasure.

Actual or potential applications of this research include the development of optimal work schedules to minimize fatigue and increase safety.

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REST: A TED talk In praise of slowness

In praise of slowness
A TED Talk with Carl Honore, 4/05

Journalist Carl Honore believes the Western world’s emphasis on speed erodes health, productivity and quality of life. But there’s a backlash brewing, as everyday people start putting the brakes on their all-too-modern lives.
pinThis talk was presented at an official TED Conference. TED’s editors featured it among our daily selections on the home page.