The Value Of Relieving Stress Throughout Corporate America
Corporate America is finally coming to the realization that the human body is not designed to function efficiently under chronic stress. It has been a slow, but important lesson to learn. The newest medical mandate for health is a 4-step system that includes relaxation, adequate sleep, balanced eating and moving the body in nature. Not only that, the medical community is advising corporate America to encourage its employees to unplug from the constant use of digital devices and get out into nature, not just for the physical and emotional benefits, but also for the bottom line.
Research Validates Value Of Corporate Wellness Programs
Validation of the importance of corporate health and wellness programs comes from a 2010 Harvard Business Review article stating that, “Wellness programs have often been viewed as a nice extra, not a strategic imperative. Newer evidence tells a different story. Since 1995, the percentage of Johnson & Johnson employees who smoke has dropped by more than two-thirds. The number who have high blood pressure or who are physically inactive also has declined—by more than half. J&J’s leaders estimate that wellness programs have cumulatively saved the company $250 million on health care costs over the past decade; from 2002 to 2008, the return was $2.71 for every dollar spent.”
The Evolution Of Corporate Wellness Programs
With the importance of formal corporate wellness programs well-established, a newer trend is gaining in popularity which represents the evolution of the requirements for true health. The idea is to get employees out of the office and into nature. Nature is consistently proven to be one of the greatest stress relievers of all time.
A very popular and growing trend for getting employees out into nature is Horse Assisted Education (HAE) programs. These programs are designed around a herd of horses. As intuitive animals, horses mirror the unspoken emotional attitudes of humans. When humans say one thing yet think and feel something incongruous with their words, tension is created in the environment.
Working with horses in a guided environment takes corporate employees out of the office and into a field of new possibilities. Working with the horses helps individuals realize the importance of being congruent in thoughts, words and action in order to have a healthy work environment. The benefits of HAE show up as greater trust among team members, greater confidence in asking for clarity and overall efficiency.
Relax, Eat, Sleep, Move
Simply watching how horses spend their days can translate into greater balance for humans who work in a corporate environment. Horses spend their days relaxing, sleeping, eating and moving about in their natural environment. Humans need the same kind of balance. Too much work makes people less, not more, efficient. Sitting in front of a computer all day is not natural. Nature is a great teacher. Take a daily walk in a nearby park or at least get out of the office for lunch. Feel the air, sense your surroundings, notice what’s going on in the world around you. Get a good night’s sleep, unplug from your digital devices for at least an hour a day and eat fresh wholesome food.
If your company is open-minded suggest an Horse Assisted Education event. Even if they are not open-minded, suggest it and tell them about the benefits. If you would like to discuss how an HAE training could benefit your business or team, give us a call. Our team at Medicine Horse Ranch designs custom equine-guided experiential programs for specific groups, individuals, businesses and organizations around any number of relevant issues and/or topics.