It may shock you to learn that WellPoint's new survey finds a majority of Americans consider their job to be a high priority (79 percent) and many also would feel lost if they were unable to go to work every day (55 percent).
This survey, conducted to commemorate May as Disability Insurance Awareness Month, finds that consumers consider their work a major aspect of their overall well-being (84 percent). In fact, many Americans would give up every day indulgences such as checking Facebook (71 percent), eating sweets (65 percent), or even drinking their morning cup of Joe (59 percent) if it meant landing their dream job.
A fair amount of attention has been paid in the past few years to the concept of well-being, popularized by bestselling authors Tom Rath and Jim Harter. In their book Wellbeing, they highlight the importance of job satisfaction, saying, "People with high career well-being are more than twice as likely to be thriving in their lives overall. If your career well-being is low, it's easy to see how it can cause deterioration in other areas over time."
According to a release, underscoring the importance of our careers to our overall well-being, the majority of consumers surveyed agreed that work-related accolades, such as getting promoted at work (81 percent) or receiving recognition from a boss or colleague (78 percent), provide a boost of self-confidence.
"At WellPoint, it's our job to protect all aspects of our members' well-being. And one important part of that is to help people get back to work quickly, should they experience a disabling illness or injury," said Jeff Spahr, vice president of Specialty businesses.
To further explore how our identities are closely tied to career well-being, The Economic Journal published a study in 2008 that revealed losing one's job might be the only major life event from which people do not fully recover from within five years.i
WellPoint said its new survey finds that in fact, consumers would go to great lengths to get back to work as soon as possible rather than let an injury or illness hold them back. In order to get back to their job, 89 percent of respondents would seek the help of specialists to get the right care. Three quarters of consumers say they would make arrangements to work from home (75 percent) or find ways to stay connected at work (75 percent) if faced with an injury or illness.
"We understand that disability leave can take a mental, emotional and financial toll on employees," said Spahr. "Our team of experts, including case managers, medical directors, behavioral health specialists, nurses and vocational rehabilitation counselors, work together to get employees healthy and back to work sooner by conducting one-on-one check-ins, engaging employees in health improvement programs and more."
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