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Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.

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10 Responses

  1. Avatar Damon says:

    I used to joke about losing weight doing the “farmer method”. You could eat anything you wanted, if you ate what you grew and you plowed the fields by hand.

    What the guy is complaining about is industrialization, specializations, and non laborious labor. That and crappy advice on what to eat from our dear leaders. (aka food pyramid). How many office drones are willing to go back to being serfs and grow their own food, and essentially be moden day amish? Not many I think.Report

  2. If a company cared about its employees’ health, as it should both out of common decency and because it’s paying for their insurance, it would modify practices that increase their stress level for little or no monetary gain. I am not holding my breath.

    ;Report

    • Avatar Oscar Gordon says:

      The company cares, because of insurance, etc. But getting managers to not cause stress on employees is a trick.Report

      • Avatar fillyjonk says:

        And part of the problem is, it’s hard to measure “wellness outcomes” so they default to things like “how much weight do people lose during the period we run a weight-loss initiative” and other things that might not necessarily be healthful or desirable for every employee. Or that they may not do in healthful ways: you can lose weight by shifting to a more-vegetable-based diet and exercise, or by fasting and drinking “shakes” that are laden with synthetic compounds that might not be that great for you long-term. And sadly, often, the fasting-and-shakes gets a faster weightloss, and therefore comes to be seen as more desirable in the final outcomes….what’s the saying? When you make something a metric it ceases to be a useful metric?Report

    • Avatar Damon says:

      Instead, companies just increase more copays and lower deductibles.Report

  3. Avatar Rufus F. says:

    Well, I’d imagine that people who work on their feet have more problems with their feet. Alcohol abuse tends to cut across social class and professions, but I think there probably is a common factor in how people with addiction issues handle stress. I think high stress jobs tend to have more alcoholics and drug users, at least from what I’ve seen.

    We can agree or disagree about his overall argument, but the guy’s got a point that stress can do more physical and cognitive damage than a great many other factors, so it’s in the interest of employers not to foster stressful environments. It’s not nearly the motivator some think it is.Report

    • I think the case that stress is linked with a lot of bad health factors is pretty straightforwar and correct. What raised some flags in my mind was the “sedentary” (and other more strictly physical) part(s), and the notion that the current health care crisis can be linked to it insofar as things on that particular front are that much worse than they used to be to the point that it tracks with our health care issues. Which I feel is an implication of what he’s saying.Report

  4. Avatar fillyjonk says:

    “Wellness plans” are often crap – basically putting the burden for stress on the employee instead of pushing HR or whatever to examine how things are done at the workplace that cause stress. This seems to be particularly common in education. We’re exhorted to “be less stressed” but it’s not like anyone with any power in the issue can see that the stress we experience is not solely internal, but is often caused by policies or things in the workplace that COULD be changed.

    A wellness program that tells people to “reduce stress” by spending an extra hour a day exercising, or by making 30 minutes to meditate or to go do volunteer work on their off time (because that’s supposed to reduce stress? It makes more stress for me) but doesn’t look at the acceleration in what’s expected of people working or the added administrative tasks visited on people or things like the endless “awareness training” that people are increasingly required to do (and that takes time away from the work that must get done) is kind of insulting.Report

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