You might have noticed that the Fall Extension Conference (FEC) schedule looks a little different this year. If you read through it, you’ll see that there is time dedicated to activities such as “mindful movements,” “stroll through the park” and “mindful eating.” In fact, each day has at least four opportunities to engage in healthy practices in between our conference activities.
As we serve the people of Michigan and help them live healthier lives, we should also value our own health and create practices within our organizational culture to reflect this priority.
“Nearly half of our waking hours are spent at work, and many of those hours are spent in meetings and conferences,” Michigan State University (MSU) Extension educator Dawn Earnesty said. “By adopting healthy meeting guidelines, MSU Extension can help to create an environment that supports employees’ efforts to eat well and be physically active. By internally promoting and taking care of the health and well-being of our own employees, we can better meet the needs of the audiences we educate daily.”
Dawn, MSU Extension educator Bree Carlson and their team worked with the FEC planning committee to incorporate this initiative into our conference this year.
“Specific opportunities at FEC will include physical activity breaks, standing tables, all food and beverages served to meet healthy meeting guidelines, healthy messaging and specific sessions that provide social, physical and emotional professional development opportunities,” Dawn said.
We have a lot to look forward to at FEC. I would like to encourage you to join me and your colleagues to take full advantage of these health-focused opportunities. It’s important that we bring healthy practices into our organization and the way we operate, and I can’t think of a better time to start.