Wellbeing at work

There are quite a few elements that leverage our wellbeing at work! 

During a dedicated week in September, we run the Happiness Week at Work! We work with the following 6 foundations for wellbeing at work, engagement, relationships, mindset, purposefulness, recharge, and resilience. During the week we share posts, run seminars, trainings, and engage people in a discussion on how we can leverage wellbeing at work. 

In this post, we are going to explore how purpose and meaning, positive relationships, resilience, and engagement at work contribute to our wellbeing. 

We will explore every element and discover what are a few things that you can do to strengthen each one of them at work.  

Sense of purpose and meaning

Let’s start with the sense of purpose and meaning – some of the most important drivers to more wellbeing, satisfaction and motivation in the job. 

Important aspects that contribute to sense of meaning at work are:

  • organizational goals that an individual can relate to and that the individual considers important

  • clear connection between individuals tasks at work and those “bigger goals”

  • an individual’s (work) goals that are motivating and align with what the individual considers important

  • opportunity to contribute to someone else or to something bigger than ourselves 

  • learning, sense of personal growth, and predicting that our work is the place that enables us to continue learning

  • feeling appreciated and as our work is noticed and important

  • sense of authenticity and impression that we can not only bring our own selves to work but also that our personal strengths and individual characteristics are appreciated by our workplace 

Moment to reflect:

  • What gives YOU most sense of meaning in your own work? 

  • How are you creating sense of purpose for yourself, and how are you supporting others in your workplace to create it?

Positive relationships

Another cornerstone of wellbeing and happiness at work is positive relationships at work.  

What do we mean by good relationships at work? 

We mean relationships with colleagues, clients, supervisors, and anyone else in the workplace in which an individual:

  • can express themselves and their attitudes; they feel heard, respected, understood, accepted, and appreciated 

  • observes that their opinions, input, and ideas are making a difference in relation to colleagues, products and goals, and/or client’s experience 

  • feels connected and having sense of belonging 

  • believes that s/he has a positive impact on others

  • feels supported and that individual has a chance to support others and impacts them positively 

  • notices open and transparent communication within the organization

  • feels safe and that one can trust and rely on colleagues and management

  • has sense that one is trusted 

  • has a positive perspective about colleagues and management

  • has positive emotions as a consequence of positive interactions at the workplace 

Moment to reflect:

  • How would you describe your relationships at work? 

  • What are the positive, constructive aspects of those relationships, and what is one thing you would like to change?

  • What small, specific action (or new habit) could you do to positively impact that change?

  • If you lead a team, how would you describe the relationships within the team? 

  • Which of the above mentioned elements would you like to make better in your organization and in your team?


Next cornerstone of wellbeing at work is resilience, an ability of individuals and organizations to deal with challenges and changes in a positive, constructive way. 

How do you build resilience? 

There are two main approaches: supporting each of the individuals in the organization in building their own individual skill of resilience, or system approach to building resilience of the team and the organization.

While organizational approach is more comprehensive and might seem more sustainable at first, both are important, as individual resilience also supports that individual to keep the resilient outlook in aspects of their life other than work, and helps with any changes to the team or job role.

How can you start strengthening resilience within your workplace?

Start by asking what is working out well, and what should you strengthen?

Then, ask what keystone change would be most impactful to all other aspects and start from that one. 

If you would like to have a deeper understanding about Resilience and what are it’s elements – get in touch, I have great books to recommend, or check our free email course below: 

Main elements of team resilience and organizational resilience:

  • meaningful goals and vision (long-term), and clear goals (shorter term)

  • flexibility, innovation and fighting rigidity of “that’s the way we’ve always done things”

  • habit of questioning status quo and the best ways of doing things in order to keep adapting and improving

  • open, transparent, supportive, constructive communication

  • focus on vision and big-picture goals and values, and flexibility about adapting actions and short term goals to longer vision and values

  • supporting yet positively challenging atmosphere in the team 

Main elements of individual resilience:

  • mindset – looking at things in a proactive and constructive way, self-compassion, optimism

  • taking ownership – clearly differentiating between what we can influence and what should we accept 

  • self-regulation – managing own emotions (most often done through thinking patterns and thoughts) and energy well

  • positive relationships – feeling supported and also focused on supporting others

  • adaptability and being willing to change and learn

  • sense of meaning – ability to find meaning in new circumstances, most commonly through learning, creating something or serving others 

Moment to reflect:

  • What would you say are the main factors that contribute to resilience at your workplace?

  • Which of these individual elements of resilience would you most like to strengthen for yourself?

  • Which of the organisational elements of resilience do you think your organization would most benefit of? 


Last but not least, engagement

There are many aspects that are important for more engagement at work.

Yet one of the ones that is quite often overlooked is recharge.

Recharge means that we have quality mechanisms in place to manage our own energy, both at work and in personal life. 

Here are some tips on recharging well:

  • do regular self-check-ins to keep an eye on your energy 

  • recognize the drop in energy early, and manage it before it drops too low

  • look into different types of energy and ask yourself what type of rest do you need: mental, emotional, physical, spiritual, social, sensory, or rest from technology 

  • build regular habits of recharging – daily, weekly, monthly and yearly 

  • try to establish a cycle between “full in” or “fully disconnected” – when you are working on something, try to be fully focused only on that, but then regularly disconnect fully to allow yourself to recharge

  • ask yourself “What actions help me maintain good energy?” and plan how can you be doing more of these regularly 

  • pay attention to your thoughts and emotions and how they impact your energy, and consciously focus on building more of the ones that you consider most helpful 

  • talk about importance of rest and recharge with others – fight against of the myth that “doing nothing” is lazy and unproductive, and recognize the link between good recharge and more productivity, creativity, motivation, positive emotions 

One of the best books on the topic of managing one’s own energy is The Power of Full Engagement – if you are into this topic, definitely check it out. 

Moment to reflect:

  • What are your best tips and tricks to recharge your energy when you feel it is being challenged? 

  • What is for you the biggest challenge in terms of managing your own energy levels, and how are you coping with that challenge?

There are many things that we can do to improve wellbeing and happiness at work, not only for others but for ourselves too. 

Moment to reflect:

  • What are your best tips for more wellbeing and happiness at work?

  • What gives you a sense of that wellbeing, and how do you see it playing it for the rest of your team? 

Interested in discovering and learning more about wellbeing at work?

Sign up for the recordings from the Happiness Week at Work 2021, where we talk about topics related to well-being, flow, practical tools etc 

Interested to learn more about your own wellbeing, happiness, and resilience?

Check our Webinars page on Happiness Academy and find much more free learning, upcoming sessions, and recordings. 

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