- Author: David Ritz
The University Of California's goal to make “UC the healthiest place to work, learn and live” acknowledges that in order to fundamentally change our health environment, campus communities must invest in a host of small changes that add up to meaningful shifts, thus producing a lasting culture of health.
UC ANR is now part of the Healthy Campus Network and is actively promoting activities and resources like meditation, stress reduction and physical activity. As part of the Healthy Campus Network, UC ANR will also start to participate in systemwide initiatives like the Diabetes Prevention Program and Healthy Vending Policy.
Mental hygiene, as a component of wellness, is not a new concept; it dates back to 1908. The World Health Organization formally defined mental health and mental hygiene in 1950. However, the ways in which employers and individuals foster wellness have changed. In the past, an employee may have taken a day off for a stomachache or headache, while not really feeling confident they could reveal the need for time off for wellness.
As the concept of wellness becomes more prevalent, new ways of incorporating wellness activities into our daily activities are emerging. UC ANR is committed to wellness beyond just the workplace. When working from home, there can be additional challenges to maintaining a healthy work environment.
Take a moment to make some small changes that add up to meaningful shifts toward your wellness: garden, meditate, walk, paint, practice your instrument and pet the furry kids.
Wellness resources are available to UC ANR employees at https://hr.ucdavis.edu/departments/asap/services.
- Author: David Ritz
However, “health” is not just the absence of disease. The World Health Organization (WHO,) defines health as “… a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
As we work from home carrying out the UC ANR mission of helping others, we need to take care of ourselves as well. Walk, practice your musical instrument, stretch, eat well, pet your cat or dog and stay connected with friends, family and work colleagues.
Here are a few thoughts about self-care.
“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.”
- Anne Lamott, American author
“You yourself; as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” - Buddha
“Self-care is never a selfish act—it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others.”
- Parker Palmer, American author
Some opportunities for self-care
- Daily desk stretch: 10 a.m. • 2 p.m. • 4 p.m.
- Walking alone in groups
- ZOOMERCISE Monday, Wednesday and Friday 12:30 p.m.-1 p.m. https://ucanr.zoom.us/j/239765343?pwd=QXF6R0FUVGU1bEZPejNrVEZtVlBvUT09
- Guided meditation: 7-minute breathing session https://shcs.ucdavis.edu/sites/default/files/podcasts/02-Intro_to_Deep_Breathing.mp3
- Breathing and meditation sessions: 7 to 22 minutes
- Online live and pre-recorded stress reduction, mindfulness & compassion based intervention sessions https://bit.ly/UCSDMindfulCompassion
- Planting tomatoes https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JM98gSKtMhQ&list=PLoEJ_Pj7y9oexf2ZkyjEQ2YsXpWAN2qgd&index=5
- Swiss chard: Harvest of the Month https://snaped.fns.usda.gov/seasonal-produce-guide/swiss-chard
- Author: Jodi Azulai
Our mission supports all Californians. That includes all of us at UC ANR. The current health crisis calls us to be intentional about self-care even as we also care for others, such children and extended family. All the while, we are balancing a new way of working so we can continue to support California's healthy families and communities, healthy food systems, and healthy environments.
It doesn't matter whether you're an office assistant, advisor, field worker, human resource partner, vice provost, staff research associate or community educator. All of us support the work of our mission.
Connection is important. Hold check-ins with your colleagues or team; set up calls via phone or Zoom. Remember that each of us responds differently to hardship. Those who feel upbeat and have fewer burdens to tackle can connect with colleagues who may have more home responsibilities or are experiencing anxiety.
There are many areas of care – physical, social, emotional, financial and environmental. These times call upon us to come together as a community and lift each other up. Please share in the comment section ideas to keep us resilient through COVID-19.
In the coming weeks, you will be receiving information that will help people manage.
For now, here is a brief list of resources:
Well and Working
Wellness Activity Library (UC Davis)
Guidance for Telecommuters (UC ANR) (see computer ergonomics at home, too)
Ergonomic Tips for Telecommuters (UC Davis)
Basic Ergonomic Exercise (YouTube)
Leading Through Crisis (UC Berkeley Haas)
Home Learning for Kids
California 4-H recommended curriculum http://4h.ucanr.edu/Resources/Curriculum/
California 4-H Project Sheets http://4h.ucanr.edu/Projects/Project_Sheets/
UCCE Santa Clara County's Online Learning Participation http://cesantaclara.ucanr.edu/Youth_Development/Covid-19_and_4-H_Participation_663/
4-H Healthy Living Activity Guide 30 fun, skill-building activities to help kids live a healthy life.
How to Homeschool During the Coronavirus Crisis with Free Resources Today Show
Google Arts and Culture provides a collection of online exhibits and tours of museums and artwork from around the world
PBS offers free access to activities for kids and parenting information
Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration (nonprofit) offers free resources for interactive online learning
Scholastic is offering free day-by-day activities for remote learning for children PreK-12 (focus on PreK-6th grade)
Work on Life Skills for Children Ages 2-18, you know, that stuff you always think you should teach your child before they grow up and move away? Busykidshappymom.org
Ways to support kids during the Corona Virus Crisis (Childmind.org)
Family and Community Health
Taking Care of Elders
Taking Care of Elderly Family Members or Neighbors Washington Post
Guidance Through Pregnancy and Breastfeeding for COVID-19 (CDC)
Do Not Mix These Cleaning Products (Goodhouskeeping.com)
Label Date Marks: Quality or Food Safety? (Penn State)
Coronavirus Disease Resources for Older Adults, Family Caregivers and Health Care Providers John A Hartford Foundation
How to Protect Older People From the Coronavirus NYT
Coping Through Stress
Finding your productive mindset LinkedIn Learning
Coping with Stress Brought on by COVID-19 (UC Davis Human Resources)
Insight Timer The largest free library of guided meditations
Calming Music (Youtube)
Coronavirus Anxiety – (Nanak Naam – Youtube)
What you are experiencing is grief (Harvard Business Review)
Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays
12:30 – 1 pm
Join UC Riverside/UC Bernadino Counties employees Christina Davidson and Michele Byrnes who are offering Zoomercise sessions! Exercise can be done in a small space and modified. Let Christina or Michele know if you want to lead a session. Plug in @ https://ucanr.zoom.us/j/239765343?pwd=QXF6R0FUVGU1bEZPejNrVEZtVlBvUT09 Meeting ID: 239 765 343 | Password: 940529
Crowd-sourced Wellness Ideas from All-hands Meeting - March 20
During our ANR all-hands meeting on Thursday, March 20, 2020, many of you helped crowd-source things you were implementing to care for yourselves, others, and your larger communities. Here are some ways you are finding solutions to your new circumstances:
How are you practicing personal wellness?
How are you managing children at home?
How are you supporting extended family and local community
Work out in living room every morning
Cooking! Lots of cooking
Daily walks in nature
Go for walks in the desert
Letting the chickens run around in the yard
Reflecting that I can only control my own actions and reactions
Walks with my partner, using iNaturalist to document life
Multiple daily walks with children and dog.
Focusing my thoughts on love and service
Picking up trash around the neighborhood
Daily walks, yoga and Zumba in the living room
Enjoying time with family
Working in the garden
Being kind to myself and forgiving myself when I am not the perfect parent
Roof ball (or rather, watching my son play this. He loves it)
Playing board games with kids
They are fending for themselves; I think.
Gardening, learning about food preservation, practicing reading, learning how to be a homeschool teacher
Practicing youth curriculum with my kids. as well as educational
Baseball in the back yard; lots of this Harry Potter board game
Communicating the importance of my work time
Keeping them busy outside.
Trying to give them attention and projects they can do by themselves while sneaking in some work.
Working later in evening when kids are in bed
Keeping a schedule
Laughing and dancing
Having a visual poster schedule for school assignments
Lots of texts and phone calls
Family WhatsApp call everyday
Staying in VERY close contact and making sure they are separating fact from fiction
Texting and checking in with loved ones
Call them daily
Encouraging older relatives to stay home
Grocery shopping for them; encouraging them to take this all seriously
Found places my older parents could safely shop
Calling and texting to make sure they have what they need
Family group chat, sharing jokes and memes