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R&R Insurance Blog

Taylor Hahn

Recent Posts

Chronic Diseases | Containing the Costs

Posted by Taylor Hahn

Employee Wellbeing

As an employer, if you are not promoting and investing in wellbeing programming for your employees, you may fall behind the curve in a few aspects.

As the younger generation is venturing into the workplace, they are expecting concrete wellbeing programming to be implemented and creative components towards overall wellness and ease of access to be intertwined. Having a functioning wellbeing program can help with your retention rates as this great resignation is upon us. If that aspect doesn’t motivate you to consider investing and starting a wellbeing program, what about the costs involved with chronic diseases?

What’s important to note is chronic diseases can be avoided, reduced or even stopped through lifestyle changes.

Chronic Disease - the costs involved

Of course there are specific direct costs and percentages associated with chronic diseases, but often times we forget the indirect costs if an employee cannot be present at work and the cost of that lost productivity.

For more information on containing the costs of chronic health conditions please view this resource.

If you are interested in discussing wellness programming further please reach out to our Health & Wellness Consultant, Taylor Hahn.

 

Topics: Wellness

End the Stigma | May is Mental Health Awareness Month

Posted by Taylor Hahn

Mental Health Awareness Month

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Mental Health continues to be a popular topic and top concern for workplaces in 2022. Over 30% of employers have added new mental health benefits within the past year, according to McKinsey and Company. Surprisingly, despite the increased efforts, nearly 25% of employees still do not feel supported when it comes to their mental health.

"40% of U.S. adults said they have struggled with mental health or substance abuse during the pandemic."

With all of this in mind, employers need to evaluate their mental health strategies and consider how they can best help maximize their employees' overall well-being. To get a jump-start on this, employers can consider these five trends for 2022 that may influence employees' mental health.

  1. More Mental Health Programs
  2. Increased Scheduling Flexibility
  3. Expanded Virtual Doctor Visits
  4. Greater Mental Health Education
  5. Improved Focus on Individuals

Mental health is a serious concern for employees and their employers. Not addressing mental health issues can result to a host of other problems down the road, including burnout and depression. For more in-depth information on implementing the five trends listed above, click here. We have also included a few additional resources below.

5 Ways to Support Your Employee's Mental Health [blog]

Wellness Mental Health Resources –  Train Your Brain Into Positive Self-Talk [blog]

Effects of Stress on the Body [interactive flyer]

 

Topics: Wellness

National Financial Literacy Month

Posted by Taylor Hahn

Financial Literacy Month

National Financial Literacy Month is celebrated in April. This is a great opportunity to promote financial wellness to employees, since it is often a neglected well-being component.

Did you know 1 in 4 employees say that stressing about finances is a major distraction at work?

In addition, 7 out of 10 employees say financial stress is their most common stress. Developing and establishing workplace financial wellness will have key benefits for everyone.

You will attracted and keep talented employees, you have a better chance to lower health cost and employees will have increased productivity and will be better prepared for a rainy day. Retirement will not be a daunting thing but rather something employees have to look forward to as well.

How are you currently addressing financial wellness in your workplace?

Are you giving employees the nudge they need with auto-enrollment, keeping the number of investment choices simple, mobile access, recognizing language barriers, along with additional plan add-ons? Unfortunately, this is a topic that cannot be addressed only once a year for employees to really benefit. Consider how else you can add this topic to your well-being program.

Food and fun are often components that encourage employees to participate. Consider this Financial Wellness Challenge created by our Health & Wellness Consultant.

For more information on financial wellness, contact a Knowledge Broker today.

 

Topics: Wellness

National Nutrition Month | 4 Ways to Keep to Your Budget

Posted by Taylor Hahn

grocery store

March is National Nutrition Month. There are so many components that go into nutrition, but for the purpose of this blog, we will be focusing on family budget tips to feed your family and yourself.

When visiting the grocery store, you may feel extremely overwhelmed. There are numerous tactics that go into how grocery stores are laid out because they want to entice their customers with impulse purchases. If you are sticking to a budget, you want to make sure to follow the below tips and tricks to stay on track.

Lookout for Expensive Items

  • Meat can often be a big ticket itemsubstitute with plant-based alternatives from time-to-time to decrease spending
  • Avoid convenience foods such as pre cut vegetables, fruit, or even single-serve packetsthey rack up the prices due to convenience but you can simply create them on your own
  • Avoid produce that is not in season

Experience the Savings

  • Keep an eye on specials and incorporate them into your weekly menu
  • Canned and frozen options have reasonable prices and make a great staple
  • Cook weekly and meal prep instead of visiting fast food places or restaurants

Have a method

  • To save money at the store, be intentional with your grocery list and meals for the week, etc.
  • You need to be organized and stick to the list without being vulnerable to the impulse buys
  • Don't forget not to waste food either by purchasing too much

Meal Prep Saves the Day

  • Always check your food options in your house before making your grocery list
  • Practice the "first-in-first-out" food rule to avoid waste
  • Create menus for lunches and dinners that incorporate overlapping ingredients

Overall, it is not as complicated as one may think to meal prep and save money at the grocery store. While you have to be organized and determined, it is worth the savings!

For more detailed information, visit eatright.org

 

Topics: Wellness

Heart Health Awareness Month

Posted by Taylor Hahn

Feb. Heart Health

Each February, awareness around heart disease occurs. The goal is to urge our population to reduce risk factors associated with developing cardiovascular disease because it remains the number one killer of both men and women.

In fact, according to the American Heart Association, every 80 seconds, one woman is killed by heart disease or strokewhich is more than all forms of cancers combined.

Individuals need to make their heart health a priority. Scheduling a visit with a healthcare provider for a preventive check-up, measuring blood pressure, checking cholesterol and looking for all signs of illness are all vital components.

There are dozens of ways to spread awareness around heart disease to your employees but, please consider these two:

Let's begin to have the conversations about just how important heart health is.

Topics: Wellness

Why New Year's Resolutions Fail

Posted by Taylor Hahn

2022 Goals

It is officially the New Year! Maybe you are an individual who has chosen to make specific New Year’s resolution(s). That is fantastic that you want to attempt to make a change; however, you do not need to wait until the New Year because resolutions made at that time have a higher chance of failure.

Approximately 156 million people will give up on their resolution in the New Year.

Why do New Year's Resolutions Fail?

  • Lack of determination
  • Setting a goal for an unrealistic outcome
  • Not planning aheadmaking the resolution on a whim
  • Being too critical
  • Having an all or nothing mentality
  • Having the goal last too long
  • Not tracking progress
  • Missing the benefits of the process

Overall, most New Year’s resolution goals are not thought out, properly, which means there is a higher chance of failing. If you really want to make a change, do not feel forced to set that intention at the New Year, but rather enjoy the process when you want to.

Remember, to set an appropriate goal it should follow the Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time Sensitive (SMART) objective. That way there is a goal with a realistic timeframe and path to progression, which will lead to a higher success rate of achievement.

Happy New Year!

Topics: Wellness

The Power of Positive Thinking

Posted by Taylor Hahn

New Mindset

Thanksgiving has officially come and gone. The holiday is typically a time where we reflect on things in our life we are grateful for. However, why should we limit gratitude to just one day? Let’s keep it going past the holiday season because gratitude has specific health benefits and effectsthat those around us and ourselves included need.

The power of positive thinking can be make such a difference. A research study indicated that a group was instructed to write five things they were grateful for once a week. After ten consecutive weeks, the experiment showed that the individuals also increased their daily exercise time and were more likely to attend regular health check-ups than those who did not participate in the journal reflection.

What are ways you can bring gratitude to your life past the holiday season? We’ve listed some options below:

  • Utilize a gratitude journal
  • Practice meditation
  • Write or verbalize three things you’re grateful for each night
  • Smile more often
  • Notice nature’s beauty
  • Post positive quotes or images
  • Focus on your strengths
  • Volunteer

It is important to remember that reflecting on gratitude can be big or little things. Whatever it is, allow yourself a moment to enjoy the positive experience despite any negative feelings. You can’t escape stress, but you can shift your perspective.

Happy Holidays!

Topics: Wellness

Financial and Physical Wellness Go Hand in Hand

Posted by Taylor Hahn

Health & Wealth Scale

We all know that financial stress can be a burden, but it can also have a negative effect on your health. Understanding the relationship between financial and physical wellness can help you improve both areas of your life.

In fact, employees who struggle from financial stress are often more likely to have less focus at work, an unhealthier lifestyle and higher medical costs.

 

Financial problems are consistently rated among the highest source of stress for people, and can cause anxiety, frustration and feelings of hopelessness.

This stress can also contribute to the following physical problems:

  • Heart Disease
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Insomnia
  • More frequent colds and minor illness
  • Unhealthy habitssuch as smoking, drinking and over-eating

Many employees have surprisingly little knowledge about managing finances, so simply offering education can be a huge benefit. If you have a wellness program, work to include the financial component with the overall program.

For more in-depth information on financial and physical wellness and how to recognize the signs of financial stress and ways to cope, click here.

Contact a Knowledge Broker, today, for more information.

Topics: Wellness

5 Ways to Support Your Employee's Mental Health

Posted by Taylor Hahn

Mental Health

Sunday, October 10th was World Mental Health Day. The COVID-19 pandemic has really highlighted the need for understanding mental health in the workplace. Therefore, now more than ever, employees are seeking mental health resources and understanding from their employer.

As an employer, there are ways you can begin to support employee mental health:

  • Promote Mental Health Awareness in the Office: open dialogues and reach out to managers or co-workers if they’re struggling. Don’t make these important conversations taboo.
  • Offer Flexible Scheduling: without work-life balance, it can greatly affect employees’ mental health
  • Address Workplace Stress: it won’t be possible to eliminate it all, but work with employees to manage stress effectively.
  • Evaluate Benefit Offerings: ensure mental health services are being met with various vendors and coverage.
  • Train Managers: work to eliminate the stigma around mental health and train managers to recognize the signs of mental illness, stress, fatigue, bullying.
Lastly, the mobile app, Headspace offers a checklist to continue the improvement around how leaders can create a supportive workplace, how to support your team’s wellbeing and how to stay centered and strong for yourself. Check out pages 12-13 for that important checklist.

Let’s continue the dialogue around mental health and show employees they matter and end the stigma!

Topics: Wellness

Wellness Mental Health Resources - Train Your Brain Into Positive Self-Talk

Posted by Taylor Hahn

mindfull image

COVID-19 has changed the world in many ways.  When it comes to mental health in the United States, the CDC reports 31% of adults have had symptoms of anxiety or depression over the past year.

  • 13% reported having started or increased substance use
  • 26% reported stress-related symptoms
  • 11% reported having serious thoughts of suicide in the past 30 days
These numbers are nearly double the rates we would have expected before the pandemic.

Closer to home, according to the American Heart Association, 23% of Milwaukee County adults report having a mental health condition. During this time, it is crucial we take care of our entire well-being but especially mental health.

One thing you can control and take action on, to improve your mental health, is positive self-talk. Dr. Alan Chu, from the University of Wisconsin Green Bay, has three steps to train the brain into positive self-talk: recognize, re-frame and refocus.

  1. Recognize the negative self-talk occurring in your mind
  2. Re-frame those emotions
  3. Refocus to control your own outcome.
There are also apps such as Headspace and Calm that can help with guided meditation and deep breathing techniques. Even 5 minutes a day will make a tremendous difference but remember the key is practice.

 For more in depth mental health information see resources below:

Topics: Wellness