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Employee Wellness News

Posted: January 31, 2022

February 2022 Employee Wellness Newsletter

Put a little love in your heart, employee wellness programs that can keep your heart healthy, and more wellness, nutrition, and fitness trends in the news.

picture of brain and heart

Wellness Wire - Put a Little Love in Your Heart

Besides the life-saving task of managing the pressure of blood pulsing through our bodies, our hearts also pump oxygen-rich blood and hormones to our brains and other organs. Yep, this keeps us alive and functioning on a physical level. But what keeps us really going mentally, emotionally, and spiritually? Our capacity to love.

Even in the smallest of ways - like a random puppy or perhaps a joy-filled moment from a kind gesture - love can feel downright magical. As humans, we love to feel love and it’s good for us! It doesn’t even take that much of it to have an amazing impact on our well-being. We feel less stress, anxiety, and depression when we give and receive that amazing emotion of amour.

As the graphic above suggests, I believe we really do have a lot of love to give. But we can't give it from an empty place.

This week I encourage you to put a little love in your heart by intentionally caring for it in all ways – physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Try moving more by stretching or taking short walks through the day. Take time in the morning for meditation or motivational reading. Think of creating space in your day to do something that brings you joy and helps you to simply feel better. Even focusing on eating a little better will show your heart life-saving love.

If you've lost that lovin' feeling from the burdens and overwhelms of life, turn to APS EAP resources for free, confidential counseling, or other behavioral health resources provided by APS Employee Benefits and Wellness.

 February Wellness Wires:

APS Employee Wellness Programs & Events

This graphic gives a visual list of what is available for all employees at APS.APS Employee Wellness offers many free programs to help all employees (regardless of benefits coverage or full/part-time status) lower their risk for disease, attain lifestyle and weight loss goals as well as manage stress and mental health issues.  

  • Health Coaching: Open to all APS employees. If you would like help with managing a chronic illness, weight loss to improve your health, or to simply feel better, APS offers free Health Coaching to all APS employees.
  • Livongo: Get your life back and manage diabetes, high blood pressure, and obesity with this personalized program- Livongo. The name is short for Live On The Go! Because having a chronic illness can hinder our positive life experiences. We want you to get that back and feel better! Participants receive one on one expert coaching, integrated tools to manage blood sugar, blood pressure, and weight loss. *This program is free for eligible employees.
  • Life on Mindfulness: Check out your new Life on Mindfulness portal with password APSLOM. This program is a free, flexible program for all employees that offers weekly drop-in meditations, new monthly content, and Saturday workshops. Links for weekly drop-ins and the Saturday sessions are in the APS Employee Wellness Calendar. Enroll in the Life on Mindfulness Program for all content and email reminders. 
  • Wednesday, February 23, 11:00 am -  Cigna Life Connected Workshop - Thriving in a Diverse & Changing Work Environment. This seminar will be hosted by Dr. Lorrie Miller, an award-winning licensed therapist and COO of Emind Wellness & Training Institute in Charlotte, NC., who specializes in helping employees manage the pressures and expectations of high-stress work environments by utilizing Emotional Intelligence Enhancement Therapy. Specifically, she helps with mild to severe anxiety symptoms and stress management. This is open to all APS employees. A replay will be emailed to registrants after the webinar. The link to register is here and in the APS Employee Wellness event calendar. 
  • Join the Desk to 5k Run/Walk Training Program! This is a 6-week training program for all levels. The training officially starts on Feb. 28th but employees can register anytime after that date. This year advanced 5k-ers have the option to participate in a 10k. The program culminates in the Albuquerque Half-marathon, 10k, 5k & kids k event by RunFit. APS employees receive discounted entries to the event. Check the Employee Wellness Google event calendar for discount codes and more. 
  • Pre-Diabetes Prevention Program:  Stop diabetes before it starts! Join this national pilot program from the CDC and through NMSU.
  • 2022 Employee Wellness Incentive Program  - This is a voluntary wellness reward program for all full-time APS employees. The new year and program have begun for 2022. You have until January 14 to submit points for 2022. Get those points in and redeem for any number of rewards like New Mexico Sports & Wellness memberships, LesMills OnDemand, Stone Age gym passes, Wecks, Flying Star, or Sports Systems gift cards. If you haven't participated, take time to read more about it, log in to your Wellness@Work well-being dashboard, and get started this year. 

Mental Health Resources

  • Effective January 1, 2022, there are new APS mental health benefits with no cost/co-pays for covered employees and dependents. 
  • All APS insurance benefits plans offer virtual and digital mental health services. 
  • Mental Health Corner -  We are all facing continual stress and uncertainty in our home and work lives. Burnout is the result of this ongoing, chronic stress. But we can ease this burden with wellness practices and outside support. Click on the Mental Health Corner for a list of different community and APS resources for mental and behavioral well-being as well as direct resources you have under your APS health insurance plan. 
  • Nourish Your Green Zone: What is your green zone and how can you grow it? Our capacity to manage stress and burnout in a more healthful way can improve when we Nourish our Green Zone! Sign up for this ongoing, self-paced virtual program. 

  • My Stress Tools: For interactive, online, and app-based resources to help manage stress and anxiety and build resilience try MyStress Tools.
APS EAP Program: Employees and immediate family members have access to free, confidential short-term counseling through the EAP program. Please call the EAP office at (505) 884-9738 to schedule an appointment. WeCounsel virtual sessions are available.

 You Can Start Anytime With A New Morning Routine!

Morning

Do you want to feel better, more productive, and have a plan for your wellness that will stick? Mornin' is a 6-week routine building program. It will help you start your days feeling calm, focused, and energized to meet the challenges that may lie ahead.

The virtual-live sessions were recorded. Recaps and slide decks are available in the Employee Wellness event calendar under the calendar date starting Tuesday, Jan. 11, and each Tuesday at 4:30 through Feb. 15. 

 

Your monthly dose of fitness, nutrition, and wellness trends!

  Move More for Longer Life

Even modest increases in physical activity can help to extend longevity and reduce the risk of heart disease, according to researchers. APS offers stretch & movement breaks on the Employee Wellness YouTube channel Tuesday/Thursdays at 11:45. Recordings of many different movement breaks are available.  read more »

   Nutrition: Plant-Based Antioxidants We Need

A study found that coffee is the primary source of polyphenols in the American diet—but we would be better served by adding more colorful options. For nutrition guidance, APS offers all employees free health coaching and Livongo for diabetes, high blood pressure, and weight management. Links are in the above sections.read more »

  Mind-Body: Green Exercise and Urban Settings

Green exercise can bring about physiological and psychological relaxation in urban environments as well as forest settings.

read more »
 Recipe for Health: Yogurt With Coffee-Plum Sauce

Most Americans do not get the recommended number of daily fruit servings, so including shelf-stable dried fruit—like the plums in this sauce—can fill nutritional gaps.read more »

 Video: Reach, Roll & Lift - Heel Sit

While sitting on your heels, reach one arm forward and rotate your palm up, keeping your hips back and chest down. Feel this stretch in your upper back and shoulders. Try an APS stretch & movement break on the Employee Wellness YouTube channel Tuesday/Thursdays at 11:45! Recordings of many different movement breaks are available.read more »