As we look ahead to another post-pandemic year, wellness continues to be at the center of emerging trends.
Depression now impacts one in three adults, according to Boston University, meaning employers need to assume several people in their workforce need help.
But 2023 won’t be the year of cookie-cutter health and wellness plans. There’s no more one-size fits all approach. What we’re seeing are deeply personalized, community-oriented experiences and services that are readily available for employees whenever they need them.
Here are the top four wellness trends we’ll see this year:
1. Goodbye ‘self-care’, hello ‘socially connected wellness’
Getting away from isolation is the goal here. Rather than solely encouraging singular self-care, companies are now developing spaces and experiences that focus on the wellness that comes with socialization and community.
With employees working flexible schedules, people need purposeful places to go where they feel connected to those around them. This could be as simple as a serene meditation room with a scheduled guided group or a cafeteria of sorts with healthy smoothies and snacks where a team can meet and socialize out of the confines of their office. Anything that brings people back together in person with either an obvious or subtle focus on mental, physical, or emotional health.
2. Mental healthcare is no longer optional
It’s official. It’s no longer a perk, it’s a necessity. Employees are looking for mental health coverage in their benefits packages. Depression, anxiety, and loneliness continue to plague our workforce and it’s time employers assume that many of their employees need help. Two out of three U.S. employers plan to make mental health and emotional well-being programs one of their top three priorities over the next three years.
This also means addressing the root causes of mental health issues. What’s causing employees to feel mentally unwell? Management needs to start looking at workload, day-to-day flexibility, and training procedures to see how they can better create a workplace culture that supports mental well-being.
3. Personalized Wellness Plans + Encouraging Inclusivity
Not every employee will benefit from a yoga class. Not every employee can participate in a walking challenge. Some people don’t want to try mediation. Personalized Wellness Plans are just that – personal. Think about this as streamlining solutions that fit individual needs and offering more health support through employee assistance programs, self-help tools, therapy sessions, and telehealth care.
Employees won’t engage in wellness initiatives that don’t serve them or that they feel excluded from. In order to improve employee engagement, productivity, and retention it’s imperative to offer a wide range or wellness solutions that any employee and relate to.
A great way to figure out what health initiatives your employees would like? Host a Wellness Week or Month full of different options to see which are most popular. Covering topics from nutrition and mindfulness to finances and social interactions, employees are able to pick and choose which topics are applicable to them.
Not sure where to start? How about joining our current Wellness Series to get a look at the New Year, New Habits workshops we’re offering.
4. Renewed Focus on Financial Wellness
Financial stress continues to be one of the biggest drivers of employee stress. Now they’re navigating global inflation and the rising costs of healthcare adding to the worry of meeting their financial obligations without running into debt.
This year, we should be arming employees with knowledge and strategies to make better money management decisions. This could be a monthly financial workshop, coaching services, access to digital workshops, or hiring financial advisors to meet with employees.
Treating financial wellness with a similar focus to mental wellness will mean an improved overall benefit for employees. If some financial stress can be lessened, that means mental and physical health is better leading to higher employee engagement and retention.