What goes into well-being at work?


Fostering well-being at work involves more than some might imagine. It's not only about providing healthy food and opportunities to exercise. Creating a positive social and behavioral environment has an even higher impact. To better understand well-being and its dependencies in the workplace, several frameworks have been developed. They include the dimensions of: Authenticity, Meaning, Mindfulness, Vitality, Belonging, and Optimism. Read on to learn more about each dimension.



Authenticity describes people's comfort level in expressing themselves openly in their workplace. Do people feel psychologically safe to express vulnerability? Are they comfortable engaging co-workers in positive conflict? Organizations can greatly enhance Authenticity by building vulnerability-based trust.


Belonging describes a person's feeling of relatedness to their co-workers. Having close friends and positive interactions in the workplace contribute greatly to this dimensions. Organizations can enhance Belonging by creating opportunities for co-workers to get to know each other better and to build trust.




Meaning relates to the sense of purpose that people find in their work. It is highly dependent on communications at all levels of an organization. Do people believe in their organization's mission? Can they make the connection between their daily activities and the greater good? The more that people can align behind a shared goal and purpose, the better an organization will function.


Mindfulness describes a person's ability to fully engage in the moment, to experience moments of flow. This can be highly influenced by the physical design of a workplace, as well as the behaviors that people engage in. Organizations can promote mindfulness by providing workstations that afford focus, as well as meetings areas that support connecting eye-to-eye.




Optimism describes a person propensity for positivity and enjoyment. Higher optimism leads to more creativity in problem solving and boosts innovation. Workplaces can promote optimism by offering people choice in where and how they work, as well as by enabling people to customize spaces.


Vitality describes a person's physiological well-being. Workplaces can do several things to support vitality for their users, such as offering healthy food options and opportunities to exercise. Workplace design aspects such as providing natural light sources and proper ventilation support vitality as well.



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