Worksite Wellness Summit Helps People Bring Energy Into the Workplace

Organizers say workplace wellness is important, because physical and mental health issues are so common

FARGO, N.D. — Most of us are exhausted after a day of work, and some organizations are trying to bring more energy into their workplaces.

The North Dakota Department of Health and Blue Cross Blue Shield teamed up, and put on a Worksite Wellness Summit.

Speakers say having workplace wellness is important, because both physical and mental health issues are so common in today’s world.

“A lot of people and organizations are looking for ideas. I think there is a commitment to finding these solutions and there is an understanding poor health and well–being is not good for individuals, but it’s really having an impact on the bottom line,” Laura Putnam, founder of Motion Infusion, said.

Blue Cross Blue Shield says wellness programs can save employers money in the long run because there will be less lost productivity. Unhealthy habits cost North Dakotans $550 million every year in medical bills.

“It’s to inspire organizations and businesses in North Dakota to create this healthy culture and do health promotion activities at their worksite,” Pete Seljevold, worksite wellness administrator for Blue Cross Blue Shield, said.

One of the activities was for people to create a collage of all things they felt make them thrive and live a more balanced life.

Some of the ideas for a more active workplace are walking meetings, standing work stations and walking breaks.

Some people find the ideas so useful they come back year after year.

“I think the only way we’re going to make a difference if we’re going to do something about the obesity epidemic, this mental health crisis that we’re seeing is really to work together in partnership and that’s what this is the beginning of,” Putnam said.

“It really helps to reframe wellness and have a conversation in a different way than it’s been before,” Seljevold said.

People also got to practice pitching workplace wellness techniques to their bosses.

“I hope they feel empowered to go back and start a movement. And really see themselves as that agent of change,” Putnam said.

Monique and  Jocelyne Lamoureux spoke at the event as well.

Categories: Local News, North Dakota News