Building My House of Wellness - Big News

There's nothing like a near-death experience to illuminate what really matters – and what doesn't. Last September, a 10 cm blood clot in my Iliac artery made its presence known. If you've ever been in a similar situation, you know that life gets suddenly very focused and very small – the size of a pinhead.

My, let's call it, "health adventure," occurred in the middle of a deeper exploration I was already going through around my career in communications, work I've enjoyed since 2003. For the past year, I've been auditing my trade and my time, paying greater attention to what's been the most fulfilling, and being brutally honest with what I need to let go of. This includes consciously moving away from work I'm good at and recognized for. Biblical. Herculean. Whatever you call it. Not easy.

Letting go of something you're good at takes just as much dedication and discipline as mastering the skill itself. My hat goes off to anyone doing this crunchy work.

Today, months later, I'd like to say that surviving my "health adventure" magically Marie Kondo-ed away every distraction and old pattern, but some remain. I'm human after all.

What I can say is that after a year of reflection, I can honestly look back with gratitude – and ahead with greater fortitude and resolve – to help as many people as I can through my work. This brings me to some exciting news.

I've thought about how much to include in this post, but I honestly want to get back to work (where I'm much more comfortable, let's be honest) so, I'll keep it short. I'm so excited to announce that I'm shifting my entire business to focus squarely on health and wellness. This an area where I've spent the majority of my experience already, and basically a formality, but now will dedicate 100% of my efforts.

Strategy For Impact was founded in the spirit of "speaking truth to power" and this still holds true when it comes to health and wellness. Our health and wellness depend on challenging (and improving) old systems and structures to welcome in a new era of healing – yes as we navigate a pandemic. This means lifting up ideas and innovators and putting control back into people's daily lives. From our places of work (where we have to return to in some capacity) to our homes and communities, from green spaces and urban areas to the sustainable products and services we use to improve our lives. To healthcare itself.

Last year, I earned my Wellness Accredited Professional certification to amplify my work in physical and mental health by bringing it into the physical world. A key focus area of my communications work will be around a healthy built environment – and helping organizations and teams transition into a healthier workplace. Reach out if having an in-house wellness and communications expert resonates with you and your teams. I'd love to tell you more about the Well Building Standard and "healthy buildings" global movement.

I'm so excited to announce that I'm shifting my entire business to focus squarely on health and wellness.

As you may have picked up, I name things. So, naturally, I've named this entire process – what I lovingly call, "Building My House of Wellness." For me, like so many working in health and wellness, it's personal. It's also the right thing to do – and a growing, critical need as we look to transform our daily lives (yet again) as we navigate a COVID vaccine and eventually returning to work, whatever that means.

The need for strategic and innovative health and wellness communications is critical for sustaining any progress we make beyond COVID resiliency.

I predict a surge in need for Internal Communications programs in 2021 as workplace culture continues to wane due to WFH and employers grapple with how to keep staff engaged and enthused if/when they are expected to return to the office – something they may falsely believe will be an easy sell.

This is an area near and dear to my heart and packed with opportunities to reinvent employer/employee relationships, build autonomy, and completely transform organizations.

The sky is the limit. For now, I've got my feet on the ground and look forward to sharing my journey with you including what I know and what I think can help. Watch this space! For now, I'll get back to work.

Reach out if you haven't already, and let's connect. If you're looking for regular insights and tools, connect with me on LinkedIn and @jpaynebu on Twitter.

Until then, please be safe and be well.