This week (1-5 November 2021) marks International Stress Awareness Week, so there's no better time to consider your workforce's mental wellbeing and ensure you're taking every measure to help improve their mental health, both in and out of the office.
International Stress Awareness Week was set up by the International Stress Management Association (ISMA UK), with the mission of raising awareness of the effects of psychological distress in the workplace and strategies to address it. The ISMA UK is a registered charity and the lead professional body for workplace and personal stress management, wellbeing, and performance.
What is International Stress Awareness Week?
International Stress Awareness Week was extended from a single day to a whole week in 2018, and this year marks 23 years since the establishment of Stress Awareness Day in 1998.
The week of stress awareness has developed as a major event focusing on stress management and campaigning against the stigma associated with stress and mental health issues. Throughout the week, experts from the ISMA UK will discuss the following topics:
- The experiences that people have with mental health challenges and what can be done to help.
- How employers are responding to mental health issues.
- The role of stress management professionals in alleviating stress, with practical and proven ways and techniques for building resilience.
- What further actions need to be taken in the light of the pandemic and workplace changes, such as hybrid working.
- Ensuring that those suffering from stress know where they can find advice and support.
The main part of International Stress Awareness Week is the ISMA UK's Online Global Stress and Wellbeing Summit taking place on 3-4 November. The summit is a dynamic hub for the latest thinking and guidance from experts on stress management, mental health, and employee wellbeing.
The Reasons Why it's Important to Manage Employees' Stress Levels
Stress can place huge demands on employees' physical and mental wellbeing, affecting their behaviour, performance, and relationships with colleagues; in fact, stress is a major cause of long-term absence from work.
The UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) defines work-related stress as "the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressures or other types of demand placed on them at work". People can feel occupational stress when they feel they don't have the resources they need to cope with the demands; whether it be physical, financial or emotional.
Work-related stress impacts businesses as it can lead to higher sickness absence, lower staff engagement and reduced productivity. In fact, according to the HSE, 17.9 million working days were lost due to stress, anxiety and depression in 2019/20.
A 2021 health and wellbeing at work survey, conducted by the CIPD, shows the following main causes of employee stress levels:
- Workloads/volume of work
- Management style
- New work-related demands or challenges due to homeworking as a result of COVID-19
- Non-work factors including relationship or family issues
- COVID-related anxiety such as fear of contagion in the workplace/commute
- Non-work factors including illness or health issues
- Poor work-life balance due to homeworking as a result of COVID-19
- Relationships at work
How Can You Manage Stress in Your Workplace?
The best way of managing occupational stress is by employers being proactive, focusing on the prevention of employee stress. There are several approaches businesses can take to address and help manage work-related stress, including:
- Communicate with staff to identify any causes of stress and what they would like from you to help manage stress levels.
- Have a written stress policy/guidance information.
- Stress management training for the whole team.
- Flexible working options and helping improve work-life balance.
- Introduce workplace wellness schemes.
And much more!
Invest in Stress-Relieving Promotional Merchandise for Your Staff
Here at Total Merchandise, we can help you take a step towards ensuring your employees can relieve their stress levels. Enter, our range of printed anti-stress merchandise items.
1. Printed Stress Balls
Firstly, the stress ball - a seriously underrated stress management item. Stress balls are designed specifically to relieve stress and anxiety, by repeatedly squeezing the ball, it releases tension and reduces the feeling of stress. That's not all - the simple act of squeezing a stress ball can also boost blood circulation and did you know that they are used as physical therapy to help strengthen muscles of the hand and wrist? Powerful little balls of foam, hey!
Our Low Cost Stress Balls are chosen by UK businesses time and time again and for good reason. Combining fantastic low prices with a high-perceived value, it's no wonder these squeezy foam balls are so popular! Not forgetting, of course, that once printed with your logo and distributed to your target audience, they will remind the end-user of your business every time they reach for the stress ball.
To remind your workforce that you value them and have their welfare at the core of your business - whilst providing the winning 'you've got this!' attitude - look no further than these Stress Medals, a unique and fun way of encouraging staff members to relieve stress.
If your employees are constantly on the move, then our Stress Ball Keyrings are just the ticket! Miniature in size but still possessing the full power of a standard-sized stress ball, these stress-relieving keyrings can be on-hand wherever and whenever they are needed.
We also have a vast range of industry-specific shaped stress balls including vans, lorries, telephones, footballs, bricks, hammers and so much more. Browse the full range of promotional stress balls and shapes and get your quote today.
2. Promotional Fidget Toys
As well as stress balls, we have a variety of different fidget spinners and toys; another proven stress-relieving item. Not only are fidget toys great for anti-anxiety, but they're also brilliant products for people with higher-than-average energy levels, including ADHD and autism.
Our Pop Fidget Toys, for example, are made from flexible plastic and contain pushable rounded buttons that can are designed to be popped in and out to help relieve tension.
Similarly, our Fidget Cubes include a range of tactile experiences including a rotating dial, rolling spinning ball and gears, flip switch, thumb joystick, and click buttons, all designed to help release the feeling of stress or anxiety.
Price on application
Our Full Colour Fidget Spinners are a classic anti-stress merchandise option. Each branded fidget toy spins around the circular centre, which is printed with your design to both sides in full colour for maximum impact.
3. Branded Wellbeing Items
Additionally to the practical desktop items we have discussed above, it's beneficial to consider other wellbeing items that your employees can use at home to help them relax and unwind after a busy day at work.
For example, these Anti Stress Colouring Books are a fantastic way of unwinding after a day in the office. In fact, colouring is a scientifically proven means of relieving stress because it has the ability to relax the fear centre of your brain, the amygdala - it actually induces the same state as meditating does. Whilst we're on the subject of meditation, we also have yoga mats available, too!
Exercise is one of the most important things you can do to combat stress, so encourage your members of staff to get moving with their very own Fit Watch. Each of these luxurious Fit Watches features a step count, calorie count, distance tracker, multi-sport tracking alarm clock, heart rate tracking, blood pressure monitoring, sleep monitor. As well as having the ability to make and receive calls and get notifications from apps such as WhatsApp and Twitter.
Price on application
A simple yet effective way of handling stress levels is to write things down, especially jotting down the things in life that make you happy and that you're grateful for. After all, focusing on the positive is always beneficial. That's why gifting your colleagues with these Individually Named Mood Soft Feel Notebooks is a brilliant idea.
This International Stress Awareness Week take a look through our full range of promotional wellbeing gifts and get your quote today. Need help finding a specific item? Simply contact a member of our friendly and experienced Sales team on 01376 509092 or email email@example.com today. Main image via Unsplash.