Employee Blogs as Part of Corporate Wellness Programs?

Blogging is good for you.  Wellness programs are intended to improve the overall health and well-being of employees. So why not combine the two?  Seems like a reasonable idea to me. 




Kevin O’Keefe at Real Lawyers Have Blogs posts about an article from Scientific American magazine that explores the therapeutic benefits of blogging.  From the article, written by Jessica Wapner:

Self-medication may be the reason the blogosphere has taken off. Scientists (and writers) have long known about the therapeutic benefits of writing about personal experiences, thoughts and feelings. But besides serving as a stress-coping mechanism, expressive writing produces many physiological benefits. Research shows that it improves memory and sleep, boosts immune cell activity and reduces viral load in AIDS patients, and even speeds healing after surgery.


Scientists now hope to explore the neurological underpinnings at play, especially considering the explosion of blogs. According to Alice Flaherty, a neuroscientist at Harvard University and Massachusetts General Hospital, the placebo theory of suffering is one window through which to view blogging. As social creatures, humans have a range of pain-related behaviors, such as complaining, which acts as a “placebo for getting satisfied,” Flaherty says. Blogging about stressful experiences might work similarly.

The “self-help” implications of blogging seems to be a powerful incentive for Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) to consider adopting blogs into their repertoires.  Of course, employers should decide in advance whether employees will be permitted to blog about work and implement a blogging policy if one doesn’t already exist.