Which benefit or program do you wish employees would utilize more?
Mental health programs are hands down, some of the most important tools we have for our employees and their families, but they are unfortunately underutilized – and rightfully so. The mental health ecosystem continues to be in the early stages of transformation. Though great progress has been made, we still have much more work to do. It’s challenging to expect greater engagement in a resource that’s not yet fully matured.
If you had one tip to share, what would it be?
Patience. Patience with your career journey, patience with your family, patience with life. In my personal opinion, I recognize that I’m able to control, maybe 3 ½ things. #1 – what I eat, #2 – how much I exercise and #3 – how much sleep I get (caveat! I’m not the parent of infant triplets!). The other ½ of what I hope (try) to control, is how I react to the world. I can’t control what happens around me, but I make my best effort to control how I react to these outside influences. This is where patience is invaluable. Instead of overreacting, take a step back, count to 10 and (try) take control of how you respond to the situation.
What works for you when it comes to managing stress?
Leveraging my community and network for specific issues and stressors. I have a network of people that can help me manage my stress for very specific things. As an example, my husband might not be the best support system on a certain issue, but my network of friends and colleagues are amazing on topic-specific “stuff.” Exercise is also a very important part of my stress management process. The combination of exercise and my community is what keeps me sane and moving forward. And I love to shop 😊. Retail therapy ALWAYS does the job.
What was your COVID silver lining?
Gyms were closed so I started running with greater regularity and I stopped wearing heels, which we all know are terrible for our bodies. On marathon Sunday 2021, I made the decision to train for my first ever marathon. For the next year, my body withstood the rigorous training routine, both physical and psychological, while I increased my speed and stamina. I believe part of my success was because I wasn’t wearing heels on a daily basis. I’m incredibly proud to say I finished! I’ve just re-upped and I’m again training for my second NYC marathon this coming November. Why am I running again? Not just because it’s fun, but I’m confident that I can improve on my finish time. No one cares about my time except for me, a mile run at any time is still a mile run!
What would you say has changed most about your job/industry since you first began your career?
The concept of healthcare consumerism (employees having a vested interest in their health and their health care decisions) versus the perceived social contract between the employee and the employer. There has been a large shift in what employees view their employer should provide and what the role of the employer should be. Having skin in the game is critical in offering sustainable solutions for both the employee and the employer. I view this as a shared responsibility.