Encouraging our employees to think about their drinking habits is not always an easy subject to raise; doing so supports workplace health, and means you will be looking out for your workforce. In return it may help you to combat common staffing issues.
As well as affecting health, mood and sleep, alcohol also has an impact on productivity and absenteeism from work, costing the UK economy between £8 and £11 billion per year in lost productivity and sickness absence.
Research has shown that 43% of people find it difficult to switch off from work and 67% are still thinking through work issues when they come home. While some people counteract workplace stress with positive efforts, like exercise, others take a less positive route, like drinking alcohol. For many, drinking too much can be a psychological battle, not a physical dependency, and it’s one that can prove challenging to break. Here are just some of the benefits people, who may well be working in your organisation, will notice if they can reduce their alcohol intake:
• Feeling more motivated and having more energy
• Improved physical health
• Iimproved quality of sleep
• Iimproved mood
• Healthier appearance
• Being more productive at work
• Saving money
It’s great that many people will now take part in the national Dry January campaign, as part of a new year’s health kick. Research shows that participants lose weight, sleep better, feel better overall and save money. Breaking habits is not always easy, though, and here in West Sussex, the Public Health team in the county council offer a free online coaching service to help people, called DrinkCoach.
Many people feel uncomfortable seeking help via traditional routes, and this online approach can be done in the privacy of the person’s own home at a time that suits them. The coaching service provides alcohol support and advice where and when it is needed.
Using Skype technology, the coaching service connects individuals to their own DrinkCoach - an alcohol support expert - at a time that suits them. The service is professional, convenient and confidential and appeals to people who may otherwise find it difficult to access support, because of daytime commitments, mobility issues, distance or stigma. Coaches help people to focus on their own goals and give them the support that they need reset their drinking habits, whether they choose to drink less, have more drink free days, or to stop altogether.
If you have employees who live or work in West Sussex please let them know about this free service. They just need to enter a promotional code WSAD to access free coaching sessions at www.drinkcoach.org.uk