Living in Uncertain Times During COVID-19 Presentation

Presentation from Kepro, our Employee Assistance Program provider, and our UWGB Wellness Center

We are all living in unprecedented times, which fosters worry and anxiety. Heightened worry and fear can only make trigger events worse than they already are. Controlling the way that we process the events is the goal of this seminar.  Please plan to join us for this virtual presentation.

Date: Wednesday, March 10, 2021
Time: 11:30 am – 12:30 pm
Please sign up to attend: https://uwgreenbay.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_dbAE69Tz2ZDuoZ0

If you aren’t able to join us during the live presentation, a recording will be available after the presentation at https://www.uwgb.edu/phoenix-forward/faculty/employee-health-wellness/.

Questions? Please email wellness@uwgb.edu

Wellness Wednesdays in March

WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS

UW-Green Bay faculty and staff are invited to join the Wellness Committee on Wednesdays in March for virtual wellness activities!

Registration (you will receive a calendar invite with a link to attend)

March 3rd – Progressive Muscle Relaxation
12:15-12:30pm
Progressive muscle relaxation is a method that helps relieve tension in the body.  You tense a group of muscles as you breathe in, and you relax them as you breathe out.  For the full experience, find a comfortable position lying down to participate.

March 10th – Chair Yoga
12:15-12:30pm
Chair yoga is a gentle form of yoga that can be done sitting on a chair or standing on the ground while using the chair for support. Just like a regular yoga practice, chair yoga increases flexibility and body awareness.

March 24th – Meditation (Guided Imagery)
12:15-12:30pm
Guided imagery is a relaxation technique that draws on your ability to visualize and daydream. This session will take you on a mental vacation to the beach under the warm sun and ocean air.

March 31st – Stretch Break (Posture Reset)
12:15-12:30pm
This short session will help your body reset and counteract the effects of poor posture. Poor posture in any aspect of your life can exhaust muscles and lead to low back and other chronic pain if it’s not addressed.

February Wellness Activity: Kindness Bingo

February 14 – 20, 2021 is Random Acts of Kindness week. Everyone can use a little kindness, especially right now! Research has shown that there are physical benefits when we see kindness and when we share kindness. It releases oxytocin which is the “feel good” hormone and reduces our stress levels. It has the same effect on our bodies as receiving a hug.

When we focus on others and share kindness with them it helps us in the following ways:

  • Helps take our mind off our own worries
  • Reminds us we are not alone when it comes to troubles and concerns
  • Gives us a sense of purpose
  • Connects us with others in a meaningful way

The purpose is to do random acts of kindness every day of the month except for a few days since there are only 25 bingo spots. Every day you can cross off one kindness task after you have completed it. Once you have completed the kindness challenge and crossed off all the boxes you can email wellness@uwgb.edu with a picture of your bingo card to receive a code to self-report your participation in this employer sponsored well-being activity for Well Wisconsin at webmdhealth.com/wellwisconsin. Hopefully, participating in this challenge will encourage you to continue and recognize acts of kindness even when there is not a bingo sheet to fill out.

BINGO CARD

Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.”                    —Henry James

Source: Well Wisconsin

Mental Wellness Challenge

As discussed in our last Coffee Talk, mental wellness is so important in our lives right now.  Please be intentional about your mental wellness – consider what areas are going well and what needs some attention.  Decide what you can do to build on the things that are working well, and look at options for improving the things that aren’t going well.  Use your resources and ask for help.  We can all improve our lives by focusing on our mental wellness – talk about it, think about it, and then take action.  Don’t worry about doing something big – just start with something small to get things moving in the right direction.

As part of our mental health focus, we challenge you to take two weeks, February 8th to 19th, to complete at least one of the activities listed on the sheet each weekday.  Click here to access this sheet, mark off activities as you complete them, and then email your completed sheet (or just let us know that you did the challenge!) to wellness@uwgb.edu by Friday, February 26th to get an employee incentiveQuestions? Please email wellness@uwgb.edu.

Seasonal Affective Disorder – Well Wisconsin Radio

 

Each episode of Well Wisconsin radio gives you important information and actionable insights provided by a Wisconsin health expert.

Morgan Meinen, dedicated well-being professional for Well Wisconsin, leads the way as host.

January’s episode: Seasonal Affective Disorder

  • When: Tuesday, February 2, noon to 12:30 p.m.
  • Who: Dr. Jim Sanders, Medical Director, Network Health
  • Register here

Listening gets you closer to earning $150*
Check off the “well-being activity” portion of your Well Wisconsin incentive by listening to two episodes of Well Wisconsin Radio.

New for this year: It’s OK if you don’t have a moment to listen live; you can get credit for listening to recordings of 2021 episodes. Listen in for the “code” provided in each episode and report at webmdhealth.com/wellwisconsin that you listened.

Check out all episodes
All 2021 episodes are available online. Click here to access the Well Wisconsin Radio back catalog.

Questions?
Contact Customer Service at 800-821-6591.

*The Well Wisconsin incentive program is a voluntary program available to employees, retirees and spouses enrolled in the State of Wisconsin Group Health Insurance Program, excluding Medicare Advantage participants who have incentives available through their health plan. The Well Wisconsin incentive will automatically be issued to eligible participants upon completing the applicable activities. All wellness incentives paid to participants are considered taxable income to the group health plan subscriber and are reported to their employer, who will issue a W2. In some cases, the Wisconsin Retirement System acts as the employer. Retirees, continuants and their spouses will have some taxes withheld from the incentive amount earned.

Taking Care of Your Emotional Health

It is natural to feel stress, anxiety, grief, and worry during and after a disaster. Everyone reacts differently, and your own feelings will change over time. Notice and accept how you feel. Taking care of your emotional health during an emergency will help you think clearly and react to the urgent needs to protect yourself and your family. Self-care during an emergency will help your long-term healing.

People with preexisting mental health conditions should continue with their treatment plans during an emergency and monitor for any new symptoms. Additional information can be found at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website.

  • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA’s) Disaster Distress Hotline: 1-800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746.
  • People with deafness or hearing loss can use their preferred relay service to call 1-800-985-5990.

Take the following steps to cope with a disaster:

  • Take care of your body– Try to eat healthy well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, and get plenty of sleep. Avoid alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs. Learn more about wellness strategies for mental health.
  • Connect with others– Share your concerns and how you are feeling with a friend or family member. Maintain healthy relationships, and build a strong support system.
  • Take breaks– Make time to unwind and remind yourself that strong feelings will fade. Try taking in deep breaths. Try to do activities you usually enjoy.
  • Stay informed– When you feel that you are missing information, you may become more stressed or nervous. Watch, listen to, or read the news for updates from officials. Be aware that there may be rumors during a crisis, especially on social media. Always check your sources and turn to reliable sources of information like your local government authorities.
  • Avoid too much exposure to news– Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories. It can be upsetting to hear about the crisis and see images repeatedly. Try to do enjoyable activities and return to normal life as much as possible and check for updates between breaks.
  • Seek help when needed– If distress impacts activities of your daily life for several days or weeks, talk to a clergy member, counselor, or doctor, or contact the SAMHSA helpline at 1-800-985-5990.

 

Look out for these common signs of distress:

  • Feelings of fear, anger, sadness, worry, numbness, or frustration
  • Changes in appetite, energy, and activity levels
  • Difficulty concentrating and making decisions
  • Difficulty sleeping or nightmares
  • Physical reactions, such as headaches, body pains, stomach problems, and skin rashes
  • Worsening of chronic health problems
  • Increased use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs

If you experience these feelings or behaviors for several days in a row and are unable to carry out normal responsibilities because of them, seek professional help.

Source:   CDC – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (copied from the Keypro website)

Also, please click on this link for UWGB resources: https://blog.uwgb.edu/hr/2021/01/employee-assistance-program-resources/

Employee Assistance Program Vendor Change January 1, 2021

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) vendor for UW System will change on January 1, 2021 from FEI to Kepro.

The EAP services provided by Kepro will remain confidential and continue to address personal and/or work-related concerns. Some of the specific concerns you may use the EAP for include:

    • mental health
    • substance abuse
    • grief and loss
    • legal and financial issues

The EAP will continue to provide you and your household family members up to six sessions per person per issue per year.

How to Contact Kepro:

    • Phone: 833-539-7285 or 877-334-0489 (TTY)
    • Website: https://sowi.mylifeexpert.com (code SOWI); to access the online resources, you will need to set-up a username and password

If you are currently receiving services through FEI, you may continue to do so through December 31, 2020. After January 1, 2021 you should contact Kepro to continue EAP services with your current provider (if they are in the Kepro network) or a new provider.

Note: FEI recently sent their network providers a communication making them aware of this change. The communication included information for them to become a Kepro provider.

For more information, visit the UW-Green Bay EAP webpage.

Source: UW System