Amcal is predicting a big productivity hit from today, thanks to Aussies’ love of overindulging.
The brand says its research shows Monday December 12 is the start of the country’s biggest week of festive frolicking, according to research by Amcal.
Close to one in five Australians (17%) will toast the festive season with colleagues between 12 and 19 December, resulting in what’s anticipated to be the ‘nation’s biggest hangover’ and the week when the greatest number of seasonal sickies are likely to take place.
Further findings from the survey suggest that more than a quarter (26%) of Australians will take up to three sick days during the festive season, with one in 20 employees planning to skip work the day after their office Christmas party.
However while much of this festive fever can be blamed on our propensity for overindulgence, a large number of us may instead be suffering the repercussions of end of year exhaustion and seasonal stress.
In fact, the research revealed that 60% of Australians find Christmas to be the most stressful time of the year with one in seven noting end of year work pressures as the reason for the stress.
For close to a quarter (24%), it’s the amplified social calendar, depleted energy levels and trying to juggle it all which make the season just a bit less jolly.
According to Amcal senior pharmacist, James Nevile, it’s important for Australian workplaces to understand the added pressures that this time of year brings, and work to balance end of year celebrations and workloads with efforts to promote health and wellness.
“The current rates of sick leave during end of year rush are costing Australian businesses an estimated $2.7 billion, not to mention the impact of reduced productivity when employees are at work, but not performing at full capacity due to stress or burning the candle at both ends,” he says.
“While it’s important to celebrate the year’s successes with colleagues, it’s equally important that workplaces seek to help employees enjoy better health throughout the busy and stressful period,” he says.
“Some of the simplest and most cost effective initiatives can go a long way in helping to boost morale and improve productivity, in turn creating a happier and healthier workplace with the added benefit of positively impacting a business’s bottom line.”
Amcal and Pharmacist James Nevile offer the following tips to pass on to workplaces to help promote health and wellness during the festive season:
Recovery breakfast: When planning end of year celebrations, ensure the plans extend to the next day and put on a healthy, nutritious breakfast for all employees to enjoy. Contrary to popular opinion, a greasy breakfast will only make people feel worse as their bodies are working hard to repair any damage – so they don’t need the extra pressure of breaking down overly processed foods. Instead, fuel your staff with fresh fruit, eggs and wholegrain toast to give them much needed energy and nutrients. In addition, offer ginger or peppermint tea to help settle the stomach.
Help with hydration: In addition to a range of health benefits, drinking plenty of H2O cleanses toxins from the body, which is especially beneficial during the stressful, silly season. Nominate someone at your workplace to be the ‘Hydration Officer’ and circulate the office a couple of times a day, ensuring that all employees have a full, fresh glass of water. The dedicated focus will ensure people stay hydrated throughout the day.
Fruit box delivery: Fruits are an important source of many essential vitamins and minerals which help promote optimal health. Currently less than half of all Australian adults eat enough fruit. Consider a corporate fruit box delivery during the festive season (or all year round, in fact) to encourage healthier eating – as they say, an apple a day, keeps the doctor away!
Make sure you get enough sleep: A lack of quality sleep can cause a range of symptoms such as fatigue, poor concentration and mood changes. These symptoms can only add to the overall stress at Christmas time, so make sure you are tucked in bed for a healthy eight hours sleep each night.
Stay active: Regular exercise is an important part of a healthy lifestyle, and it can also help to improve mood for some people. Furthermore, increased levels of fitness can increase the release of natural chemicals in the brain and may result in benefits such as an elevated mood, better sleeping patterns, and an increase in energy levels. All of these benefits are key assets to take into the festive season, so you are ready to tackle all that lies ahead.