We look at five wellbeing trends for 2024 that will most likely impact us. Some of the ideas have been around for a while but continue to shift and expand as we move into 2024. This will move across to our workplaces, so how can we help to support team’s wellness wants and needs?
According to a report by Westfield Health, a huge 42% of workers have never been asked for input into what wellbeing support they receive. We believe that’s a good place to start!
We’ve all got used to reducing our plastic consumption, but this year sustainability goes beyond our coffee cups, water bottles and packaging. Climate change has very visibly affected us all in the past few years. I write this as the UK is drenched in floodwater!
As a nation we are questioning environmental decisions far more than before and importantly for the powers that be, it’s affecting how we purchase, shop and generally make decisions. This is no different in the workplace, with 54% of Millennials saying that they research a brand, its environmental impact and policies before accepting a job offer.
Blue Zones are places in the world where people regularly live to 100 years old. Not only do they live long lives, but they are happy and purposeful too. Not only do they live a long time, but they live well, they are less likely to become ill in late middle age. There are many reasons why scientists think this is the case and what’s interesting is that whilst diet and exercise are important there is so much more to it!
The Blue Zones website is full of information that can help you create your own little Blue Zone! Did you know for example that being in a happy relationship can lower your mortality risk by 49%? And social connections by 29%. My favourite stat is that kindness and caring for others is incredibly good for your overall health. More kindness would be great, wouldn’t it? This fits in with the workplace trend of hybrid working. In fact, younger generations will take this into account when they are applying for a job. Suddenly time spent with loved ones and nature is non-negotiable. Time is a precious commodity.
I know I’m writing this in January, but it looks like some of us will be drinking less alcohol in 2024. There is a sharp rise in non-boozy drinks which will just increase. Many big brands now offer an alcohol-free version and there is a big increase, especially in spirits. But a Diet Coke won’t cut it anymore. Drinks with adaptions are increasingly popular. That’s drinks with an extra something to relax, be that ashwagandha, CBD, or something else. We are also trying to maximise our vitamin content by introducing drinks like Lion’s Mane coffee (that’s a mushroom and has nothing to do with a big cat!). This will leave us all clear-headed and bouncy on a Monday morning right?
This brings me nicely to better nutrition. We will be not only drinking better but trying to eat better too. I write this with leftover Quality Street sweets at my side, so this one is for me! I am doing the 30 plants a week challenge, where essentially I try and eat the rainbow. 30 different fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains each week. It’s a great way to improve your diet as you are actively trying to eat more not less. Which is good in our tricking our brains that this is in no way a diet! Time to reintroduce the fruit bowl to the office or perhaps send your homeworkers something new and healthy.
Back to nature and back to basics
Almost half (47%) of UK workers say the pandemic has reduced the importance they place on work. (KPMG) That’s a pretty tough one for employers, but it does mean that our workplaces need to offer more. It isn’t good enough to have a wellbeing whitewash, we need to create communities that people want to be in. There is an upward trend in being in nature and a simpler existence. We all understand the power of a walk to clear our heads and gently work our bodies, but we all want more of that lifestyle. We are all tired after a rocky few years and a cost of living crisis. Our workplaces need to bring nature in, in some way and allow a mini digital detox every now and again.
Whilst writing this, it’s interesting to see how our working lives are becoming so much more blended with our life outside. Much of this is due to new ways of working, but there is a real trend towards health and comfort and nourishment. I think we all need a collective hug (apparently 8 is the ideal for wellbeing each day! Thank goodness I have pets!). By introducing lifestyle trends into the workplace perhaps all of our wellbeing will also be on the rise.