For the last decade or so, "wellness" has been a buzzword of sorts in the workplace. It began with organizations working towards helping employees achieve a more positive physical state of wellness. But as we all now know, wellness is all-encompassing, with physical, spiritual, and emotional elements as well. A broader look at wellness certainly must include mental health issues. Wellness has become a goal for the workplace. And it is a big one.
I've heard many opine that technology is the best, and worst, thing that has happened to all of us. I must admit I share that opinion. The instant access to people, information, and (sometimes accurate) answers is a click away. The challenge? There is literally no down time for any of us. Most competitive radiology practices now employ radiologists from all over the world? Why? Because as we enter into our nighttime, images and scans that are ready to be interpreted can be sent across phone lines to the other side of the world for radiologists there to read and sent back so they are waiting at 7am when first shift begins here at our hospitals. Sounds great, right?
There is a downside.
With the advent of instant feedback, results, and information comes a demand from customers, patients, and competitors to never have to wait for anything. We continue to rush to outpace our latest accomplishment...and at our heels we can feel the barking of the dogs of the competitor who has, for the moment, found a newer, faster way to deliver information.
Stress is an obvious downside. Less reported are the mistakes that occur as we continue to rush forward to do more, do it faster, and be ever-accessible.
When was the last time you saw an invitation to get away from it all, literally fall off of the grid, and relax away from technology? I know those offers are still out there, but the reason they are declining and becoming further apart is because research has shown that people are actually more stressed now when they are separated from their technology. Stress mounts as imaginations run wild creating scenarios that usually are not accurate when employees actually are able to connect.
It is a new day. And it has come relatively quickly compared to other milestones in our history. For those of you who can remember life before a cell phone...recall the last time you left home and forgot to pick your phone up...
Your heart races, right? How will you make it through the day without your technology? We are all in a territory that is uncharted. We can, however, take the helm of this ship. And find a balance so that we harness the best of technology and be a caretaker of our own well-being. Take a deep breath. We are all going to get to the next, best place together.