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'Creating a Culture of Well-Being'

We recently hosted a Wellness Salon at our Edelman New York office to discuss one of the most critical issues confronting all of us today: Well-Being. We posed the question to prominent change-makers in health and wellness: How Can We Create a Culture of Well-Being?

Posted by Edelman on Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Earlier this spring, Edelman PR, the world's largest public relations firm, hosted a wellness salon at their New York City offices to discuss one of the most important and critical issues confronting society today: How can we create a culture of well-being?

In today's hyper-social world, it is impossible to do anything alone. So the question has been posed: Why are people approaching health and well-being from an isolated perspective?

According to Edelman Berland, a market insights and analytics division, there is a "Modern Well-Being Dilemma" that exists in society today. The research they have conducted via "The American Well-Being Study", in conjunction with Edelman Wellness 360, a component of Edelman's health sector, speaks to finding a way to successfully come up with solutions to this dilemma and how crucial it is for companies and brands to play a role in supporting individual well-being.

There is an existing struggle for today's health-minded consumer. How people define well-being has changed and become more complex. According to statistics, seventy-four (74) percent of the population considers well-being to be more about someone's mental and emotional state versus their physical state.

"The definition of well-being has changed over the years as health has evolved....it's no longer about the physical but about all aspects of our lives that make us healthy, happy and satisfied individuals...." says Jennifer Hauser, Executive Vice President and Director of Edelman Wellness 360.

Well-being is viewed quite differently across generations, indicating a major gap in ideologies. Millennials cite the most barriers to achieving their goals, despite the fact that they are the most motivated generation in regards to their well-being pursuits.

Research shows that 57 percent of Millennials say that they need guidance and direction while 36 percent of GenXers and 34 percent of Boomers rely less heavily on these tools. As a whole, the latter two generations deal with more practical, functional barriers in achieving well-being and deal with a number of issues from being held back by a lack of financial stability to struggling with stress and sleep deprivation.

Furthermore, there are many factors indicating that as a society, we feel just "okay" and are approaching well being alone...and it's clearly evident.

Studies show that 89 percent of people feel responsible for their own health and well-being and nearly half of people don't turn to others for support.

There are some suggestions and ideas being considered to help turn the situation around and deal with this idea of holistic well-being on a broader, more collaborative scale.

Edelman organized an assemble of prominent leaders and game changers from a variety of industries such as health and wellness, media, financial, technology and the pharmaceutical industry, just to name a few, to come together and create dialogue regarding approaching wellness from a collective, community perspective.

The speakers in attendance discussed a variety of topics and included:

Nancy Frates: "Mobilize Community". Nancy is the mother of ALS patient, Pete Frates and co-creator of and inspiration behind the successful ALS "Ice Bucket Challenge". To learn more about Nancy Frates and her son, Pete Frates's story, visit www.petefrates.com.

Joy Bauer, MS, RDN: "Nourish the Body and Soul." Joy is a health and nutrition expert for NBC's Today Show and founder of Nourish Snacks, an online service which delivers a wide variety of healthy, wholesome snacks to your home or office. Visit www.joybauer.com for more information and nutritional tips.

Clare Martorana: "Get Personal"
Clare is an executive vice president and general manager of Everyday Health. For additional information regarding the Everyday Health movement, visit www.everydayhealth.com.

Alana Burns: "Be Bold"
Alana is the national senior vice president of the American Lung Association and director of ALA's LUNG FORCE initiative. Log onto www.lung.org to learn more.

Marco Borges: "Create A Healthy Habit"
Marco is an exercise physiologist and Founder of 22 Days Nutrition as well as life/nutrition coach to Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez and many others. Log onto www.22daysnutrition.com to hear more about the 22 Days of Nutrition initiative and Marco's tips for living a healthy lifestyle.

Shawn Ullman & Crystal Wall:
"Motivate Through Real People"
Shawn is the founder of Feel Rich-an urban health media movement encouraging individuals to make healthier choices. Crystal is the star of the Feel Rich documentary, Founder of Mixfitz Studios, wife of hip-hop icon Paul Wall and a pillar in the community for her weight loss success. Log onto www.feelrich.com to learn more about the Feel Rich movement.

Matthew Bannister: "Activate A Culture of Health"
Matt is the executive vice president of communications at the American Heart Association. Visit www.heart.org and www.strokeassociation.org for more information.

Thus, many believe that companies and brands can do more in helping society on the journey to well-being and are more likely to purchase products and services from companies that effectively engage in the topic of well-being.

"There is a need for companies, organizations, non-profits, individuals as well as the media to be bold...in making a difference in the public health arena," says Alana Burns of The American Lung Association. One company that has taken a bold stance in making a difference in creating a healthier culture of well-being is CVS Health who, as the second largest pharmacy chain in the United States, has ended the sale of cigarettes and tobacco products at more than 7,600 stores nationwide effective October 1, 2014. This is a huge shift in awareness that reflects a broader commitment to overall healthcare and a desire to change the future health of Americans.

According to the research conducted by Edelman Berland, below are five (5) ways brands can effectively engage consumers on personal well-being:

1. Take an active interest in your consumer's well-being
2. Motivate and facilitate your customers to connect with others
3. Personalize the well-being experience
4. Impact the well-being of others
5. Care about your customer today and tomorrow.

Therefore, by brands joining in to participate in the consumer well-being journey, that ultimately helps to create a "Culture of Well-Being-" shaping the products we buy, the foods we eat and the brands we support.

Approaching health and well-being from a collective, community perspective shows that there is a "process to progress," says Crystal Wall, star of the Feel Rich documentary.

Video Courtesy Of/Research Conducted By: Edelman Wellness 360 and Edelman Berland

About The Edelman "American Well-Being Study:"
"Interviews were conducted among 1,053 respondents representative of the United States general population ages 18 years old and older. The survey was conducted from November 11-26, 2014 with a margin of error of +/-3.02%."-- Edelman Berland

For more information regarding the Edelman well-being study, log on here and www.edelman.com.

Log onto Joy Bauer's Nourish Snack link created especially for The Huffington Post community.

Follow Madinah N. James on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Madinah1111