(6 mins read)

Did you know that stress is good? Yes, stress is good! 👍 It’s a controversial statement at the beginning of the post about wellbeing. A healthy stress level gives us an adrenaline boost and stimulates us to action. If there is no stress, there may not be enough energy, effort or even passiveness.

Too much or permanent stress is NOT good. It pushes us towards a BURNOUT 🔥 zone.

Stress can be caused in two dimensions: personal and professional.

In case of personal stress level, is it up to us to keep it under control and there are some simple tips how to manage our personal energy level:

  1. Be an early bird ⏰
  2. Meditate 🧘‍♀️ 
  3. Eat healthy 🍣
  4. Drink water 💦
  5. Do 10,000 steps daily 🏃‍♀️
  6. Take breaks and stretch 🤸‍♀️
  7. Spend time with family and friends 🤝
  8. Have fun and smile 😊
  9. Reflect on a day 💭
  10. Sleep well 😴

If you stick to the above simple and pragmatic rules, you will be able to build personal resilience. Resilience will help you stay on track with execution of plans, projects or tasks, despite all setbacks, challenges, obstacles, difficulties, problems, headwinds, complications, issues, troubles or worries.

There is a much more complex situation with promoting wellbeing on an organisational level.


Companies implement activities or programs to promote wellbeing activities. They focus on helping people to keep the balance, to deal with personal situations, stress, uncertainty and massive workload. Many mental health initiatives, like walking meetings or no camera calls, have been put in place as well. To minimize the number of calls or prevent meetings from growing exponentially, management implements quiet days or, in some cases, even silent weeks with literally no meetings or video calls at all. In some extreme cases due to a massive amount of appointments some people do not have time to have lunch or even go to the toilet! Have you experienced this? I am sure you did. Employees are asked to block off diary slots for lunch breaks, e.g. between 12pm and 1:30pm on a national level. Some companies even give all employees extra free days.  

Although, implementation of all crucial wellbeing initiatives helps people to manage stress on a personal level, it creates another issue. In reality, people start working earlier in the morning or later in the evening. We add lots of great wellbeing initiatives; however, we do not remove anything from the system. The list of priorities is exactly the same. The system is overloaded on a large scale. Fixed lunch breaks force people to work an extra hour in the morning or in the evening.. Implementing “No Meeting Fridays” leaves no option for employees but to reschedule these calls or meetings to a day between Monday-Thursday. It has become obvious that to really impact wellbeing of our employees, we have to open a discussion about removing some work or tasks from the system, and start working smarter. 

“Wellbeing issues” are only symptoms and if you really wanted to tackle it, you need to deal with its root causes like SYSTEM RELIEF, BEHAVIOURS and a focus on EMPATHY. 


You need to start a discussion about removing some activities from a “to do” list. Every day you should ask this critical question: “Do I have to have it or is it nice to have?”. This approach will help you to make some decisions about dropping activities which are not critical. There are soe simple techniques which will help you to achieve it. First one is to reduce the number of your priorities. The model we work with has a natural tendency to overload. Do not accept it as it is. Challenge your list of priorities and reduce the number by 20-30%. For example, instead of 10 priorities on your list, work with 7 or 8. It will give your system a bit of relief. Secondly, every morning you should ask yourself a question: “What am I not going to do today?”; does it sound strange? I am sure that it does, however you need to be clear with what you are not going to do. It will help you to say no to some tasks which can wait or can be ignored. And a final comment, if you see a bit of space in the system, do not start new projects or initiatives. Leave it as it is and let people enjoy their time when they can manage a work/life balance. 

There is another way of giving the system a bit of rest. You can focus on increasing your productivity. Push for new technologies or look for a know-how. Look for new ways of working and adding value. Share your problems or challenges with other people and I am sure that they will be able to provide you with some tips or advice that will boost your efficiency. You are not the first one in the world who deals with those problems. Once working from home, you can improve your email and meeting etiquette. Before sending every email, think about its content, what you are asking for and who you are sending it to. Before every meeting, prepare an agenda and be clear of the information, action or decision required from the participants. And do not forget to invite only those who have to participate in that meeting. 


There is also another element which will strengthen all your efforts to provide your system relief. These are behaviours like empowerment or assertiveness. Open a discussion about empowerment, how you can drive decision making downstream in the organisation. A decentralized organisation will be more agile and will be able to achieve more. There will be no need to escalate every single problem to a leader or leadership team. And you know what… people who are close to a problem will be able to analyse it and make the optimal decision. So, empowerment will increase the quality of decisions as well. Focus on building assertiveness. People should be able to say “no” to some tasks, emails or meetings. It should be accepted if requested action is not on a priority list or is irrelevant. 


From the moment we stopped coming to offices, we changed our ways of working. It is less about a team and more about every single individual. We work in isolation and it is really up to us to how we manage our time and what we focus on. Each leader has to re-contract ways of working with all the people in the team and understand their personal situations, help them adjust and provide them with flexibility based on trust. It will help people develop an individual approach and a specific working pattern. Your team members know exactly where they want to work, when they prefer to work and how they want to work. Once you understand the personal preferences of every single individual in your team, you will be able to allocate specific work to people based on their working style, wellbeing situation, abilities or skills. Bring adequate work to people who would enjoy it and who would maximise results. Work/life balance cannot be managed on a team level; leaders need to bring it down to a personal level, because we are all different and we have different personal situations which are permanently evolving and may be significantly different from one day to the next. 

Don’t forget, that promotion of wellbeing in the organisation is not a one off event, it is a process. In some cases, it may take weeks or months.


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