employee health

Holiday Stress in the Workplace

Meghan Hatalla

Benovate’s Expert Blogger

Meghan Hatalla

Benovate’s Expert Blogger

5 Ways to Help Reduce Your Employees Unwanted Holiday Stress

Benovate may have not written the book (yet?) on employee well-being, but we’ve written a fair amount of articles on the subject. And while there isn’t a timeframe on implementing strategies to improve employee health, there is a time when it might behoove you to call an audible or two.

That time is now. With the holidays ramping up, there’s no doubt that holiday stress is increasing, too. Whether your employees are nervous about getting through projects before the end of the year, unsure about holiday budgets, or even worried about weather or not the’re getting enough vitamin D; all of these external factors are taking a toll on their ability to focus. To help employees regain that focus, consider some of these tips to aid workplace well-being in the midst of the season.

Help Employees Reduce Holiday Stressors

Break Up the Day with Onsite Pampering

Give employees structured time to tune out during the day. This could take the form of yoga classes or massages onsite over lunch hours or breaks. Relieving stress–with the aches and pains that often accompany it–allows them to become more productive.

Implement Flexible Holiday Schedules

One of the worst parts of the holiday season can be re-acclimating to the hardships presented by weather. Unpredictable commute times, accidents and other mishaps conspire to increase stress levels. Allowing employees to leave early or later in order to avoid a mess on the highway is a great way to give them the opportunity to have a little room to breathe.. Many employees also have holiday travel plans so the flexibility to leave early or work remotely during that time can help improve work life balance.

Create a Low-Stakes Competition

Problem-solving can work best when you have adequate time for information to process. Sometimes the best way to aid that is to take a little break and go back to the task with a fresh perspective. Engage employees in a low-stakes game to capture their attention and take their mind off of taxing projects or whatever’s bugging them. It could be a structured as a Wii bowling tournament or as simple as flipping bottles.

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Offer Personalized Holiday Rewards

This might not be entirely possible in every organization, but might be to some degree. Come up with some options for employees regarding their end-of-year reward (and if you don’t offer one, remember that employee incentives are huge when it comes to retaining talent). Options could include a gift, a bonus, paid time off, or some other treat your company can create.

Keep “the best medicine” On Demand

Laughter reduces stress, and it’s the good kind of contagious. Create avenues for employees to share funny holiday stories, like in an employee newsletter. Bring in a voting mechanism to incentivize participation! You could also hold themed dress-up days during holiday weeks or start holiday-themed photo caption contests.

An effective strategy should be more than just something trotted out for the holidays. The key is to intertwine it within your company culture. Start out with subtle ways–reward choosing water over sugary or short-term caffeine booster drinks or encourage exercise and ways to burn calories, and then build from there..

In addition to these tips…

There’s one more way that organizations can aid in relieving the stress of the season. The Benovate member portal offers many pieces of advice on how employees can let go and relax. Employee health is key to workplace productivity, and there’s no excuse to sacrifice that during the holidays. Finding ways to support your workforce should be a priority for any company.

Get Involved!

Are you a broker, consultant, or an employer with employees who should become Benovate members? Click here to request a quick Platform Demonstration, or click here to watch some videos showing Benovate in action.


Benovate believes in making better health accessible to everyone customized to each unique member – our mission is to engage, educate and empower members to make appropriate health and lifestyle changes. Inspiring a healthy, total well-being.

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