In an ideal world, all employees enjoy a work-life balance. As soon as they clock out, they return home to relax. They get full hours’ sleep and can afford to take plenty of breaks and holidays every year.
In reality, Australian workers are some of the most stressed individuals in the world, and it’s affecting their physical and mental health. To cope, businesses these days are exploring even unique approaches such as investing in timber flooring wholesalers offer in Melbourne.
Stress Levels of Australians
There’s no single official report on the levels of stress among Australians. The data from the Medibank revealed that at least 4.9 million people experienced it between 2016 and 2017. This number was more than a million higher than about a decade ago.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) provided almost the same number, which was 4.8 million, from 2017 to 2018. It’s about 20% of the population or one in every five individuals.
Meanwhile, a report by the Australian Psychological Society (APS) revealed that over 25% of the people experienced moderate to severe depression and high levels of anxiety.
Regardless of what this information says, one thing is clear: many Australians suffer from significant stress. Where is it coming from?
Most of the reports pointed towards two factors: money and work. According to Medibank, almost 40% of the respondents blamed stress to work pressure. Over 35% claimed they juggled a lot of tasks and responsibilities.
Both Medibank and APS cited finances as a significant stress contributor. It’s the leading reason for many years, according to APS, while Medibank revealed that 17% worried about the cost of their home. Fewer than 15% attributed the problem to social media and global politics.
Knowing the level and impact of stress in the workplace is essential. The data from Beyond Blue showed that mental health conditions now account for high compensation claims. These problems also result in over $10 billion in losses due to decreased productivity and employee disengagement.
Workplace stress can also increase health risks. A study by the University of California-Irvine revealed that it could boost the odds of developing cardiovascular disease, which is responsible for over 25% of global deaths annually.
In 2014, German researchers claimed that this type of stress could be a risk factor for type 2 diabetes. It could be because stress affects the body’s metabolism and even raises the chances of becoming overweight or obese.
What Has Timber Flooring Got to Do with It?
The Beyond Blue data said that Australian businesses could get a return of $2.30 for each dollar they spend on improving mental health in the workplace. It increases productivity, efficiency, and engagement. Stress management may also retain the best employees and encourage talented individuals to apply.
For this reason, companies implement many measures to deal with job stress. One of these is the incorporation of earth-friendly or –oriented products, such as timber flooring. The likes of Amazon are already doing it.
According to studies, humans are biophilic—that is, people have a deep affinity with nature. It is in our trait to seek it, so the presence of these wood materials helps promote the connection.
Others also tout on the attention restoration theory (ART). Nature can calm the mind and slow down the heart rate by shifting focus as seamlessly as possible. It also drives the attention outwardly, so it lessens the chances of self-rumination.
While anxiety and stress are standard in the workplace, companies may have to rein these in. This way, they can take care of their employees’ health and maintain the ideal level of productivity and engagement. Fortunately, businesses have many options, including bringing nature into the office.