There has been so much written about stress in its many forms – “good stress” – when we are motivated to meet a deadline or make something happen and positive adrenaline courses through our veins, vs “negative stress” when our blood pressure rises and our hearts start racing in a fashion we know isn’t doing us any good but sometimes – particularly from a work point of view –  we carry on regardless, stressing not only ourselves further, but often those around us too.

We all have our own ways of trying to manage stress and sometimes it comes in the form of a “wake-up-call” when a colleague or friend is diagnosed with a serious illness. Only then do we realise that our health is our wealth and we’re hopefully wise enough to take a step back and think about what’s really important.

But what’s also becoming increasingly important is the quality and health-giving properties of the food we eat – especially in terms of settling the gut, calming the mind and increasing our energy and hence our ability to cope with life’s challenges.

That’s why some of us here at Decide. are excited to be participating in “Food Matters Live” later this month – finding out more about trends and innovations in nutrition and how the right foods can greatly enhance our wellbeing. The topics we’re covering are “Future-proofing: packaging for millennials” and “Healthier by design: packaging for the health conscious consumer“, but I’m particularly keen to find out more about nutrition for health & wellbeing, and the nutrient sources shaping the future.

Food matter live Logo

Food for thought indeed…

Another much-talked about stress-relieving practise is mindfulness, and although in its simplest form, it means being fully present in the moment it’s easier said than done!

However we have also recently been learning through a key global client of ours about the Japanese concept of Omotenashi and embracing the spirit of “Ichigo-Ichie”, which is about treating every encounter with the utmost respect – “Treasure every encounter, for it will never recur”.

japanese tea ritual

The spirit of Ichigo-Ichie is deeply rooted in the tradition of the tea ceremony where the sentiments of harmony, respect, purity and tranquility are heartfelt. Each ceremony is as unique as its guests, with careful attention paid to every detail to ensure that that each moment is an experience to be treasured. Positive values are expressed throughout the entire ceremony, not only focusing on the purpose but on the complete experience ensuring a meaningful and lasting memory for the guests.

What an inspirational principle – even just reading about it is calming…

Whilst researching for this piece, I also found myself recently at a “Writing for Wellbeing” workshop. Yes, I was sceptical too, but with the right guidance and prompts and an open mind it’s amazing what the concept of writing “freely and without judgement” reveals and just allowing the words to flow is both liberating and revealing – and yes, stress-busting too! We all know that often the answers to our challenges lie within and this is a great technique for tapping into them.

Finally, and more practically, there are constant innovations being marketed to help us all manage our health better. The rise of DIY health and wellbeing monitors and associated wearable technology are testament to this.

Decide. were recently delighted to be asked to help create the digital marketing communications for the launch of Boots Advanced Blood Pressure Monitor with Atrial Fibrillation Alert. This is a breakthrough device for at-home use, that not only measures blood pressure, but also indicates if the user is at risk of a stroke and can thereby help reduce the risk by 67% – a potential health concern for us all and one we know can be exacerbated by stress.

So with all this in mind on 2nd November this year, take a few moments out of your busy work schedule to mindfully savour your coffee, enjoy a nutritious, healthy lunch and take a couple of conscious deep breaths to calm your mind and body. Then repeat as necessary…

Posted by

Jo Errington-Stevens

Date

2nd November 2016
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