As time goes by, more research emerges and much of it is centered around mental health for good reason. We’re finally understanding how much of our quality life, achievements, and general success in life hinges on our mental well-being. Some of the most interesting information that is coming to light is related to productivity in the workplace and how it is affected by the activities pursued during leisure time.
The Value of Leisure Time
Research indicates that adequate rest time is crucial to keep the minds of employees mentally sharp and to ensure they are happy and productive. One of the key challenges faced by employees once they arrive home after their day at work is shutting off. 47% of workers who were interviewed said that work worries and thoughts continue to run through their minds after hours. This doesn’t give them the necessary break to recharge and arrive fresh in the morning.
As a result, a number of workers feel consumed by their work lives, failing to focus on their families or take on a new hobby. It also means the epidemic of burnout relating to work is gaining traction. It is also easy to slip into a vicious cycle: as the mental health of workers declines, so does their work. So, they try to put in extra hours to compensate but end up exacerbating the symptoms of exhaustion.
What Can Employers and Employees Do?
Create a comfortable work environment people will want to spend their time in. There is a growing movement in the corporate space, which is very promising. Office spaces are turning into productivity havens which offer workers homely comforts, like good coffee and great seating areas. This encourages people to have a break away from their desks. Embrace a few team building ideas in the office. Try to incorporate a sense of team building into your daily operations by facilitating people’s passions.
For example, in a recent survey, 44% of surveyed individuals reported that watching or participating in sports helps them to reduce their stress levels and gives them a mental break. So, adding a foosball table, a pool table, or a TV with sports channels to your recreational room is highly therapeutic and promises better productivity.
Alongside that, a new study by four BYU information systems professors discovered that by playing just 45 minutes of a video game together, a recently established team could be 20 percent more productive in tasks they completed afterward. So, setting up a gaming station for staff members to play their favorite games – that could be pool or foosball, as above, or even board or card games – during lunch breaks, or to use as company team-building exercises, will help to increase productivity tremendously.
Employees might also decide to source games at home such as online casino games which can be enjoyed via mobile phones and tablets. Offering state-of-the-art graphics for slot games, like video poker and Mega Moolah, there are also many bonuses available, making this an easy and possibly cost-free way of allowing the mind to switch off in downtime and so, in turn, be more productive when required.
The real key to mental health lies in actual downtime. No one can really prescribe what qualifies as relaxing time for another person. That is why it is really up to each office to determine this for themselves. Take a survey to see what people are into and hold a reasonable discussion to find ways to implement that activity into the work environment. The results? Employees spend less time behind their desks, but they will likely accomplish a far greater deal.