BSBPEF201 – Support personal wellbeing in the workplace
In this unit you will learn how to:
Recognise factors that impact personal wellbeing
Plan communication with supervisor
Communicate with supervisor
Investigate available wellbeing resources
Well-being is associated with many health, job, family, and economically-related benefits. For example, higher levels of well-being are associated with decreased risk of disease, illness, and injury, better immune functioning, speedier recovery and increased longevity. Individuals with high levels of well-being are more productive at work and are more likely to contribute to their communities.
While there is no consensus around a single definition of well-being, there is general agreement that at minimum, well-being includes;
the presence of positive emotions and moods such as contentment and happiness
the absence of negative emotions like depression or anxiety)
satisfaction with life
fulfillment and positive functioning.
In simple terms, well-being can be described as feeling good about life and having a positive attitude. Even though happiness is an essential element of personal wellbeing, it also involves such things as the fulfilment of long-term goals, a sense of purpose and how in control a person feels in their life.
However, an overall sense of wellbeing will not be achieved without having a balance in these key elements:
Physical. This includes lifestyle choices that affect the functioning of our bodies. What we eat and how active we are will affect our physical wellbeing.
Emotional or psychological. This is our ability to cope with everyday life and reflects how we think and feel about ourselves. It involves the extent to which we feel a sense of belonging and social inclusion; the way we communicate with others, our relationships, values, beliefs, lifestyles and traditions are all important factors of social wellbeing. It also involves the ability to experience and integrate meaning and purpose in life through being connected to our inner self, to nature or even a greater power.
Intellectual. It is important to gain and maintain intellectual wellbeing as it helps us to expand our knowledge and skills in order to live an enjoyable and successful life.
Economic wellbeing, in short, is our ability to meet our basic needs and feel a sense of security.
The world we live in is complex. Understanding the requirement of wellbeing and the factors that influence this state, whether as an individual, community or nation, helps us to work together to improve the quality of our lifestyles.
Recognising factors that impact personal wellbeing
The social, economic, cultural and physical environment in which people live their lives has a significant effect on their health and wellbeing. Although genetics and personal behaviour play a strong part in determining an individual’s health, good health starts with where we live, where we work and learn, and where we play. So achieving a sense of wellbeing should be an important part of both our personal and work lives.
Identifying personal and workplace factors that may impact on wellbeing
Wellbeing is not just the absence of disease or illness. As we know, it is a complex combination of a person’s physical, mental, emotional and social health factors and is strongly linked to happiness and life satisfaction. Wellbeing, however, does not simply “happen” and there are common personal and workplace factors that have an impact on your state of wellness.
Personal factors, for example, can include;
Cultural. Your cultural upbringing may have an influence, for example, on what foods you can and cannot eat, how you dress, how you relate to people of other cultures, or what cultural customs you must observe regardless of whether you are at work or not.
Educational. Your education level may be a factor in your social interactions; influencing who you socialize with and the type of activities you participate in. It will also be a factor in determining the type of job you can get.
Environmental. This not only includes environmental factors that impact on your health, such as quality of the air or water, it also includes things such as the quality of your home life or neighbourhood environment.
Familial. Your family life will also be a factor on your state of wellbeing. The level of your responsibilities towards your family, how much private space and time you get, the pressure put on you to do well, all have an influence on you.
Financial. Your financial state impacts on what you can and can’t afford to do. It influences where you can live, how much, if any, disposable income you have to enjoy the things that make you happy.
Psychological. All of the above factors may – or will – influence the amount of pressure placed on a person to work harder and succeed.
Workplace factors, on the other hand, can include;
Culture. Workplace culture is distinctly different from your personal cultural background. It describes an organisation’s general view of it work operation and its team of employees. This might relate to;
how social the organisation is in terms of relationships with its staff
“open door” policy between staff and management
environmental policies and views on “green” workplace operations
work ethics; they might have a no nonsense approach to work processes and staff with little social interaction
Empowerment and psychological safety. Factors here might include (but are not limited to);
a need for promotion
praise and recognition
the feeling that you are secure in your job.
Inclusion and diversity. While it is against the law, in Australia, to discriminate against people because of their culture, religion, physical and mental abilities, and gender among other things, it does still happen that people from diverse backgrounds feel excluded from workplace teams or social activities.
Leadership. It could be said that strong leadership creates a strong team, while weak leadership might lead to an environment in which everyone works to their own agenda and a team spirit does not exist. This in turn can lead to job dissatisfaction and resentment. Strong leadership within an organisation provides the team with;
motivational strategies designed to build cohesive teams that work together for the good of the company and its people as a whole.
an organisational structure that
has clear lines of responsibility
provides policies and procedures to ensure a safe, smooth and consistent mode of business operation
allows team members to offer suggestions and ideas
allows team members to approach their supervisors about any concerns they might have.
wellbeing programs offered as part of the organisational culture and that ensure that the workplace is a safe and healthy environment.
Workplace Health and Safety (WHS). WHS programs are a legislative requirement in all workplaces. They were put in place to ensure that workers (or anyone visiting business premises) had a safe and risk free environment in which to work. Some workplaces are, by their very nature, hazardous places, putting additional pressure and stress on workers. Inadequate WHS policies and procedures can lead to;
Sickness in the workplace
Danger of serious illness, accidents or in extreme cases even death.
In an effort to maximise profits many organisations expect more and more work to be done by less and less people, causing stress with the pressure of getting the work done.
It is easy to become overwhelmed by all of this pressure so it is important to take steps in maintaining your wellbeing both at home, and in the workplace.