Using your intranet
Empower employees with happiness?
Looking for ways to promote wellbeing in your organisation? Your intranet can be a great tool. Let's find out how!
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Commentators think helping employees understand their DOSE hormones can help promote well-being in the workplace.
There are a lot of changes going on in the world that contribute to stress and anxiety. The economic woes, anxiety caused by social media, and balancing work and life are just some of the day-to-day worries we experience.
Is your organisation doing enough to promote positive mental health at work?
The mental health of your employees may affect their productivity, focus, and performance—which can negatively affect your company. Positive mental health in the workplace is important because it allows your employees to cope with challenges and setbacks both at home and in the workplace.
It also helps your employees manage stress, boost resilience, and thrive in their roles and responsibilities. A healthy workplace helps your employees reach their highest potential. A safe place to discuss openly without discrimination is extremely important. If your organisation lacks this, you’re at risk of losing valuable employees and their productivity.
But, don’t worry, there are several ways to let your employees know how to boost their hormones and mental health in the workplace, which you can distribute on your employee intranet or HR or staff portal.
How Can You Create a Happy Culture in the Workplace?
To encourage and enable your employees to produce more dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin, and endorphins, you need to consider current situations that may have a negative impact on the mental health of your employees and ask yourself how you can support this.
Here are some questions to ask yourself:
“How are your employees currently rewarded and recognised? What opportunities are there for your employees to challenge themselves to achieve greater things?”
“How does your organisation encourage positive connections with their colleagues, friends, family, and the community?”
Creating a positive working environment contributes to the increase of these happy hormones which also leads to positive mental and physical health. This also enables your employees to function better and be the best of themselves in work and their personal lives.
Secrets to a Happy Brain (DOSE)
There are four hormones that are linked to making people happy. These are dopamine, oxytocin, serotonin endorphin, and abbreviated to DOSE.
“Happy hormones” make people feel good. If we have these happy hormones in the body, we not only feel good, but we perform better too at work and at home.
Dopamine drives our brain’s reward system, it urges us to achieve goals and seek pleasure. It also helps regulate emotional responses. Out of work, dopamine levels rise when we enjoy our favorites meal, when we have sex and when we win. Low levels of dopamine results in la ack of motivation, self-doubt, enthusiasm, and procrastination. It may also lead to addictive or obsessive behaviours and trouble at work.
How to increase dopamine hormones in the brain at work:
Most types of rewards contribute to the increase of dopamine such as improving on a skill, receiving recognition or praise, and achieving a goal. Food can also have an impact on dopamine.
Whilst businesses don't normally prescribe supplements to their employees you can inform employees about the power of supplements to help them take control of their well-being and mental state.
L-Tyrosine is a naturally occurring form of tyrosine, an amino acid. The body uses it to produce proteins, neurotransmitters, and other important compounds. Aside from this, it also plays a role in metabolism and boosting endurance for better brain function.
Studies have shown that L-tyrosine increases endurance and energy. This is extremely helpful for people who are always on the go or active—just like your employees.
In a clinical trial, athletes were given L-tyrosine supplements regularly in the form of a drink. Participants showed improvement in their performances even in extreme conditions.
People struggling with energy and drive at work tend to have low levels of dopamine which can be alleviated by the use of L-tyrosine, Along with other activities like reducing junk food diets and improving exercise and experiences in natural environments like woods and forests.
Oxytocin is also called the “hug” or “love” hormone that plays a vital role in trust, intimacy, and empathy. It also helps regulate social interactions which help us build and maintain relationships in the workplace. Oxytocin is released in the brain when doing certain activities such as hugging, kissing, and having sex.
Low levels of oxytocin contribute to isolating behaviour, distrust, fear, and loneliness which experts believe reduce life expectancy.
How to boost oxytocin levels in the brain:
You can boost oxytocin levels by having emotional connections or being physically intimate with others. Reaching out or getting to know your colleagues or employees is the first step in building social trust.
High levels of vitamin D are linked to lower levels of depression. You can get vitamin D from the sun or in foods like eggs, mushrooms, fortified foods, and fish.
Magnesium is an essential mineral That is very much lacking in modern diets that supports over 300 Bodily functions including muscle and nerve functions. It also helps in reducing anxiety and migraines.
Interestingly, another way of building oxytocin is by contact with “cuddly animals”. Some businesses large and small are, do you know, now introducing things like “office dogs” Sometimes also known as therapy dogs which can be petted by the staff during the day and sometimes taken home overnight or on weekends.
Perhaps most well-known these days is the Hormone serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that plays a vital role in boosting mood and helps in regulating body functions such as sleep, bone health, and digestion. Serotonin is important to regulate anxiety, balance mood, and reduce depression. It also helps improve social behaviour.
Having enough serotonin levels in our body improves memory, learning, and focus. It also means better levels of melatonin that help improve sleep. It is a fantastic antioxidant that is also good for the immune system.
While low levels of serotonin cause irritability, insomnia, anxiety, depression, panic, and pain. It can also affect memory and other cognitive functions and knock back work performance and cohesion with colleagues.
How can you increase Seratonin hormones in the brain?
Having a healthy mind and body can increase the levels of serotonin. Getting enough sleep, drinking adequate amounts of water, looking after ourselves, and eating healthy foods are just some ways to have a healthy mind and body.
Mindfulness (Meditation exercises) is shown to raise Serotonin levels.
Another way to increase serotonin levels in the body is by taking supplements like 5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP), L-Tryptophan, and Phenylalanine which helps our body naturally produce more serotonin. (Note: People who are taking antidepressant medications should not supplements without their provider's supervision)
Endorphins help regulate emotional responses in the brain and allow us to cope with anxiety and stress. It also helps in regulating physiological responsibility which enables us to cope with physical and emotional pain.
Low levels of endorphins can result in anxiety, reduced tolerance to pain, and a myriad of physical disorders.
How do you increase endorphins in the brain?
Physical exercise, eating foods like chilies and chocolates, laughter, increasing immunity, and enhancing pleasure are some things we do to increase endorphins.
The amino acid L-phenylalanine contributes to the production of some neurotransmitters and may help increase levels of endorphins in the body.
According to Frank Murray, author of the book “100 Super Supplements for a Longer Life”, L-phenylalanine blocks enzymes that degrade endorphins to keep them in circulation for a longer period of time.
This can be combined with N-AcetylCysteine as some research shows this helps brain reward mechanisms and aids endorphins.
This amino acid has also been used to increase alertness, control addictive behaviours and suppress appetites. Phenylalanine should not be used by anyone with phenylketonuria.
Can an Intranet Help Promote Mental Well-Being for Your Employees?
Knowing how to distribute this information across your organisation can be difficult because some prefer it to be confidential. The solution is to have a more open and inclusive environment. Each organisation’s approach and judgment depend on its own culture.
Some commentators think that the best way to keep employees informed about this topic is by being open and publishing information or content on DOSE hormones on your intranet’s wellbeing section.
Remember whilst it's important for employees to have an understanding of DOSE. Organisations need to be mindful of to what extent they get involved with an individual in the business and leave this up to employees to discuss with their doctors or to research things themselves. Note organizations like Mental Health in the Workplace can also help.
We want to thank the team and Bespoke Biotics who provided us with information on supplements that can be useful to improve mental health in the workplace.
Article by Maria Gabrielle
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US ✆ +1 (302) 672 3007
UK ✆ +44 (207) 871 5021
UK ✆ +44 (207) 871 5021