April 2022 The WELLesley Employee
A Monthly Safety and Wellness Newsletter brought to you by The Town of Wellesley Employee Safety & Wellness Committee
April's Wellness Initiative - Spring Fitness Challenge - Be The Best You in Spring 2022!
Submitted by Jen Glover
Sign up today to get fit and help Wellesley win!
From APRIL 4th - MAY 15th, participate in any type of physical activity that will keep you moving. Strive towards the individual challenge of averaging 30 minutes of physical activity, 5 times per week. Gain points for Team Wellesley to compete in being one of top 3 community teams.
April Wellness Awareness - Mindfulness
With April, thoughts of sunshine, opportunities to get more fresh air and overall feelings of lightness and new beginnings come to mind. April is also Stress Awareness Month. It is a great time to try “mindfulness”, a simple, effective type of meditation known to offer many well-being benefits. Here are some benefits and techniques from the Mayo Clinic.
Some benefits of Mindfulness include:
• Reduced stress and anxiety
• Pain relief
• Decreased depression
• Assistance in conditions such as insomnia, high blood pressure and diabetes
• Decreased job burnout
• Increased attention
Examples of how to implement Mindfulness:
• Take the time to really experience the present moment. Try to experience it with all 5 senses: sight, sound, smell, taste and touch.
• Try to live in the present moment with acceptance. Seek joy in the simple things.
• Bring your attention to your breathing. Try simply taking a deep breath and focusing on the sensations. Close your eyes and just experience the breath as you inhale and exhale.
• Go outside. For an added bonus, try practicing mindfulness exercises outdoors in nature.
Examples of more structured Mindfulness practices:
• Body scan meditation. This is the practice of focusing on each part of your body, from toe to head or head to toe, and giving attention to each part before moving on to the next one.
• Sitting meditation. This is practicing breath focus while sitting with your feet on the ground, hands in your lap and your back straight.
• Walking meditation. This is the practice of walking slowly in a peaceful location, while bringing attention to the sensations of actually walking through space.
For additional information on these mindfulness practices, click here to reach the article from the Mayo Clinic: Mindfulness Exercises
World Health Day is April 7th
Submitted by Cay Meagher
World Health Day is celebrated on April 7th to mark the anniversary of the founding of the World Health Organization in 1948. Each year a theme is selected to highlight a priority area of public health concern around the world. World Health Day 2022 focuses on Our Planet, Our Health. This year WHO will focus attention on urgent actions needed to keep humans and the planet healthy and foster a movement to create societies focused on well-being. WHO estimates that more than 13 million deaths around the world each year are due to avoidable environmental causes; this includes the climate crisis which is the single biggest health threat facing humanity. Through the Our Planet, Our Health campaign, WHO will urge governments and the public to share stories of steps they are taking to protect the planet and their health and prioritize well-being societies. For more information on how you can participate individually or through governmental action, please visit their website: https://www.who.int/campaigns/world-health-day/2022/recommended-actions-to-protect-our-planet-our-health
Work Zone Hazard Awareness – for Employees and the Public
Submitted by Michael Carmody
Department of Public Works employees are acutely aware of the hazards in work zones in or near the roads and public ways in Wellesley. Whether it’s tending plants on traffic islands, roadway repair or water main leaks, employees in these areas work uncomfortably close to vehicular and pedestrian traffic.
National Work Zone Awareness Week, which runs from April 11-15, is an event devoted to employee and public roadway work zone awareness and coincides with the beginning of construction season for northern states.
Work zones in roadways are a disruption to the normal traffic pattern, and the changes are often unexpected. Traffic pattern changes include road narrowing, loss of one lane, reduced speed, and road structures to drive over. Before work begins, a temporary traffic control plan is developed. For construction on a major road, the plan can involve public information, including message boards, especially if roads will be closed. For all work in or near roadways the DPW implements a plan to safely control traffic leading to, at the point of, and going away from the work zone. These plans follow the Federal Highway Administration’s Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). For work zones, we follow MUTCD procedures for placement of temporary traffic control devices.
It may not look like it, but the placement of those orange signs, traffic cones, and even the police detail follows a carefully planned pattern to safely transition traffic past the work zone. Our work crews regularly practice placement of traffic control devices on Municipal Way, our service road shared with WMLP. When we practice, we use the chart shown below:
Public education is an important part of work zone safety. We all can benefit from regular reminders to slow down when approaching work zones and be prepared for changes in the traffic pattern. Keep calm, go with the flow, and be prepared for the unexpected.
COVID-19 Testing Info
EAP REINTRODUCTION ORIENTATION WITH OVERVIEW OF SERVICES Online April 6th, 2022 12:00pm - 1:00pm
MAKING REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS IN THE WORKPLACE Online April 12th, 2022 9:00am - 12:00pm
Did you know that you have access to recorded trainings on a variety of topics through MIIA? If you don't already have a login, you can register here using your Wellesley email: https://www.emiia.org/join
MIIA's New E-learning Center provides quality training to meet annual requirements and tracks compliance for organization members at no cost to you. Train anytime, anywhere with our vast online library that includes more than 3,000 diverse courses and videos.
Do you have an event or training that you would like to make available to all employees? Please contact Jen Glover firstname.lastname@example.org
Monthly Action Item!
Submitted by Emma Weiler
Did you know that cleaning can help promote a calmer, more productive state of mind? (https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-truisms-wellness/201607/the-powerful-psychology-behind-cleanliness)
Besides removing clutter and giving you relief from a crowded space, cleaning is an effective mindfulness practice. One study found that students who washed dishes had greater states of mindfulness and positive moods. (https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s12671-014-0360-9).
If you don’t have time to clean thoroughly, take this opportunity to organize items or tackle one cleaning task at a time. (https://www.psycom.net/anxiety/mental-health-benefits-cleaning) Set aside 30 minutes in your week to go over everything on your desk and get it in order. Your mind will thank you!