Planning a wellness week at least once a year is a great way to provide your employees with tools they can use to support their professional and personal lives. Here are some of our favorite wellness week ideas, whether you’re planning a wellness week in the office or you’re planning activities for a remote team of employees.
Wellness means lots of things. Physical health is often what comes to mind, but it also includes mental health, nutrition, and even quality of sleep. With so many things to consider, planning a week of wellness can seem overwhelming!
Don’t make assumptions about what you think your team needs. If you’re planning a true employee wellness week where your team is at the center of all the activities you plan, you should start by gathering their input.
Send out an employee survey and ask which health and wellness activities they would like to see during wellness week. Make the survey anonymous and you can gather even more information. For example, you can ask about the challenges employees are facing in their personal and professional lives, and what kinds of classes or activities they think might help.
If you want to cut to the chase, check out our wellness week activities for employees below. Then, create a list and ask your employees to vote for the ones they like the best.
No matter how you gather their feedback, employees will appreciate that they were included in the process. They are more likely to participate, and they are more likely to have a positive attitude when they attend activities too.
Activities for Physical Health
It’s easy not to think about our health until a problem becomes big enough that we’re finally ready to address it. Wellness activities at work are a great way to address this issue and encourage your employees to take some time out of their day to focus on their physical health.
Fitness classes are among the most common examples of wellness activities that can be scheduled during a wellness week. If it proves to be popular and you have the budget, consider continuing those classes throughout the year.
When you schedule the class matters just as much as what type of classes you schedule. Plan classes during regular working hours so employees don’t feel like it’s another thing they have to add to their to-do list when the workday is over. Classes can be held in person in an empty space in your office, you can schedule a class at a local fitness studio, or you can hold classes online.
Other ideas for fun wellness activities at work that focus on physical health include:
- Walking meetings
- On-site health clinics
- On-site flu shots
Activities for Mental Health
A class on meditation is a great wellness event for employees because it is a powerful tool for reducing anxiety, but it can be challenging for people who have a hard time sitting quietly. The good news is that meditation doesn’t always have to mean sitting cross-legged with your eyes closed!
Meditation and mindfulness classes can include classes on breath work, as it has been scientifically proven to promote relaxation and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression, as well as increase alertness. Sound bath classes during a mental wellness week are especially popular. Participants lie on the ground while a practitioner creates a variety of sounds with many different musical instruments, like metal and crystal bowls, gongs, and chimes.
Access to coaching and counseling are great ways to support employees during a mental health and wellness week. Allow employees to schedule a meeting during office hours with a career coach or a life coach to talk about the professional and personal challenges they are struggling with. Access to a licensed psychologist or counselor is also a great way to support the mental health of the employees in your office.
Activities for Nutrition
Nutrition is a great topic to integrate into a health and wellness week! Avoid making group wellness activities about weight loss, as it can be an uncomfortable topic. Not to mention, weight is not an indicator of health.
There are so many other, better nutrition topics you can cover!
Healthy nutrition classes can cover a wide range of topics like:
- The connection between food and mood
- Mindful eating
- How food affects your gut health
- Meal prepping
- Foods to boost your immunity
- Foods to boost your energy
- Detox myths and tips
Cooking classes can be a lot of fun! Not only is it a great way to arm your employees with a new healthy recipe they can make again at home, people make deep connections with each other over a meal, which makes it one of the most social wellness activities for the workplace.
Looking for nutrition-centered ideas for a remote team? Consider signing employees up for a meal subscription service. It will encourage them to cook their own lunch instead of having something delivered. Make it a social experience by ordering the same kits for everyone all week and allow everyone to cook and eat their meals over Zoom.
Activities for Self-Care
The pace of life in the 21st Century never slows down, but that doesn’t mean we’re all meant to work all day, every day. We have to slow down, and the best way to prevent burnout and encourage your workforce to take time for themselves is to choose wellness week activities that include self-care topics.
Personal care packages can be a fun way to encourage your employees to take care of themselves! Care packages can include:
- Healthy snacks
- Spa items
- A journal
- Essential oils and diffuser
- Fidget toys
- Adult coloring books
- Acupressure jewelry
You can make sure employees are taking time for themselves by providing everyone with break timers that can be used long after wellness week activities end. An office makeover can be a lot of fun too! That might mean redecorating the office, or it could mean giving your remote employees a budget to buy new supplies and redecorate their home office.
Activities for Good Sleep
Sleep affects everything from our mood during the day to our long-term health. When you’re well-rested, you feel like you can take on the day and you’re more productive at work. Your quality of life suffers without a restful sleep, and over time, it is also associated with high blood pressure and an increased likelihood of experiencing a stroke or a heart attack. That’s why sleep is a great wellness class idea!
Host a sleep improvement class during a corporate wellness week that gives everyone tips for falling asleep faster and sleeping more deeply. Among the most unexpected well-being activities for the workplace is allowing employees to nap during the day. Offer a longer lunch or longer break times to give employees plenty of time to rest. Create a sleep space with dimmed lights, cots, and bedding so employees can get a little shuteye.
A class on boundaries can be a surprising way to encourage sleep. When employees learn how to turn off their email notifications and create a clear separation between work and home, everyone will not only feel more empowered and confident, it can also calm the mind, making it easier to fall asleep. This type of class is great for every employee, but it can be an especially great addition to a corporate wellness week for remote employees, as the line between personal and professional life can be especially blurred when working from home.
Start a Wellness Challenge
No wellness week at work is complete without classes and activities, but wellness challenges can be effective too. They encourage participation from employees who are competitive, and they can also be a lot of fun!
Remember that a wellness challenge won’t bring about enhanced well-being if employees are required to participate in a challenge that makes them uncomfortable. Poll employees about wellness challenges they actually want to participate in, and always give employees the ability to opt out without judgment.
Just a few of our favorite workplace wellness challenges include:
- 5,000+ Steps Per Day Challenge
- Water Drinking Challenge
- Meditation Challenge
- Healthy Eating Challenge
- Healthy Sleep Challenge
A challenge is a fun way to give employees something in common to talk about, making it an especially good wellness activity for remote employees. It can encourage employees to talk about their accomplishments and failures. It also gives employees the chance to share recommendations with each other.
Planning wellness activities for employees, whether during a wellness week or throughout the year, is a great way to cultivate a happier, healthier workforce that in turn will make your company a more pleasant, productive place to work. Whether you want to focus on a particular topic, like mental health, or you want to find unique and fun ways for employees to interact with each other, the ideas on this list are sure to help you plan an effective and enjoyable corporate wellness week.