Employee Wellness Newsletter

Support the Spread of Wellness

November 2021

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About Us

Our Employee Wellness and Support Services provides opportunities and resources for employees to develop and maintain healthy emotional, mental, and physical well-being through support and guidance, as well as promoting personal and professional productivity through educational engagement. Visit our website for more information about Employee Wellness and Support Services: Employee Wellness and Support Services
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The IISD EWS Newsletter

This newsletter will provide you with information on emotional, mental, physical and nutritional health. We will focus on how to help you be proactive about your health and well-being. The EWS Newsletter will also provide support & guidance resources that we hope will assist you in dealing with stressors and challenges.

Upcoming EWS Workshops

TCG - Financial Success

Join us in person with our TCG advisors on how to achieve financial success when thinking about retirement. Information covered will include: Irving's voluntary 403(b) and 457 retirement plans, difference between a 403(b) and 457 Retirement Plan, and understanding social security and TRS benefits.

Date: November 30, Tuesday

Location: Admin Building Training Room 5 (In person)

Time: 3:45 - 4:15 & 5:00 - 5:30

Register here on Strive.

Yumlish - Eating Healthy during the Holidays

Upcoming holidays provides lots of opportunities to celebrate. With a few simple tricks, you can enjoy all the goodies without the extra calories or guilt. Join us in person to learn how you can keep the focus on your loved ones while making smart choices.

Date: November 18, Thursday

Location: Admin Building Training Room 3 (In person)

Time: 12:00 - 12:30 (Lunch and learn), 3:45 - 4:45, & 5:00 - 6:00

Register here on Strive.

Happening in November...

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National Diabetes Month

November is National Diabetes Month! Our community comes together to bring awareness and attention to diabetes. According to the CDC, more than 1 in 3 or 88 million adult Americans have prediabetes. Unfortunately, most people do not know they have prediabetes. Check out the article below for tips to prevent and manage prediabetes and diabetes.

Source: NIH

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Native American Heritage Month

We will be celebrating Native American Heritage Day on November 1, 2021. Honoring your own heritage and recognizing others' heritage is a sign of respect. This month is celebrated to honor Native Americans who have contributed to enrich our culture and to advocate challenges they have faced in the past.
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Veterans Day

We will be celebrating Veterans Day on November 11, 2021 to honor Veterans served in the United States Armed Forces. Thank you for your dedication, bravery, and willingness to serve our country.
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How to Minimize Family Conflict During the Holidays

The holidays are chaotic for some people. However, this does not have to be the case. Follow these 7 tips to minimize family conflict during the holidays.


When meeting your relatives that you have not seen for awhile, greet them with a nice compliment.


Take part in brain challenging activities (e.g., puzzles) or take a long walk. Physical activity boosts blood flow to the brain to make you feel less anxious and improve your mood.


Adult beverages can increase impulsivity and family conflict. Additionally, it can increase your appetite that may lead to overeating.


Shy away from controversial discussions (e.g., political, religion, or personal beliefs). Instead, look for a solution to redirect questionable discussions in to a positive one.


Persistent sugar intake may lead to erratic brain cell firing and turn in to an aggressive behavior. Vast amounts of research shows that excessive sugar intake can cause heart and organ problems, insomnia, and insulin imbalance. Try to replace sugar and artificial sweeteners with fruits.


Saying sorry does not mean that you are weak. As a matter of fact, it means that you are stronger to realize your fault. Reaching out to show how sorry you are to the other person can help build a stronger relationship.


Try to be more mindful of those around you. Try to meet their needs if only it is reasonable. Be an active listener and make eye contact.

Source: BrainMD

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World Kindness Day

We will be celebrating World Kindness Day on November 13, 2021 to advocate being kind to others, yourself, and the world. Try to pick one of those areas and put it in to action. For example, be kind to the world by picking up trash that you see.
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Jokes of the Month

1. Why did they let the turkey join the band?

2. What do you call a running turkey?

3. What's a turkey's favorite dessert?

4. Why did the turkey cross the road?

*Answers will be at the end of the newsletter.

Mental Health

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Setting Healthy Boundaries for the Holidays

For many individuals, the holidays represent a time spent with family, friends, laughter, and great food. Quality time is associated with the season. However, for others this time of the year can be challenging due to unhealthy relationships and lack of boundaries with loved ones. When it comes to people close to us, sometimes we tend not to have healthy boundaries in place that would protect our mental and emotional well-being. Healthy boundaries represent many things; they are an indication that mentally and emotionally you are stable, that you are invested in your self-care, and that you have established your own self-identity. There are many power dynamics when it comes to family that causes individuals to have a difficult time setting boundaries, whether it’s with parents, grandparents, or siblings. There is a saying that goes, “you are not required to set yourself on fire, to keep others warm”. In other words, your peace, your stability matters; having boundaries and putting yourself first, is a tell-tale sign that you choose you.

As we approach the holiday season take the time to do a self-examination and examination of the relationships that matter to you. Consider creating and implementing any necessary boundaries so that you can fully enjoy what the holiday season brings.

Source: Positive Psychology

Let it go! Perfection is overrated!

We live in a world where many things are portrayed as beautiful, flawless, and without error. Especially on social media, television, and the internet. This type of portrayed perfection tends to give people a sense of false reality and identity. For some the idea and concept of perfectionism does not come from an outside source, but from their culture, household, and this inner pressure to never fail. The challenge with perfectionism is that it causes individuals to keep an “endless” report card where they tend to “grade” harshly and critique themselves. Individuals may think this a type of motivation, when in fact it tends to be unhealthy causing mental anguish. There is a balance that needs to be created. How can goals be established while leaving room for error and correction? Learning to strive for excellence while engaging in self-compassion is key. As you are reading this think about the areas in your life that you are striving to make perfect and how you can challenge yourself to unpack and undo this mindset and let it go.

Source: Positive Psychology


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Gobble gobble turkey wobble! Who is ready to stuff as much Thanksgiving food?! It only comes once a year. Being mindful of what you are eating and staying active by taking short walks can help balance your diet. Before you indulge, check out these 9 tips for a healthy Thanksgiving.

Source: Medical West

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Diabetes-Friendly Cauliflower Stuffing

Don't know what to bring for Thanksgiving? Why not try making this paleo low carb cauliflower stuffing? It has all the flavor of traditional stuffing. You only need a few ingredients and reheats well! Click here for the recipe.


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"In addition to staying active, try to avoid sitting for prolonged periods of time, such as when watching football games or eating. Remember: Too much sitting is hazardous to your health. Research shows that getting up for just five minutes every 30 to 60 minutes and performing light activity (Say, pacing around the house or performing simple squat exercises) reduces the risk of diabetes and other heart disease risk factors." - Lance Dalleck, assistant professor of exercise and sport science at Western State Colorado University


Have a game plan just like a player going into an important game by tracking your food intake and activity level. Try downloading calorie counting apps like MyFitnessPal, Fitbit, HealthOut, or others. Stay hydrated as your brain can confuse thirst with hunger. This will help you stay full.


Make sure to plan out your exercise the day before you plan to have a busy day with friends, families, and significant others. You can replace going to the gym by working out at home. Remember that most gyms will have modified gym hours during the holidays.


No one can plan for everything so be prepared for the unexpected. It's okay to go off track. Just be mindful and come back on track as soon as you can.


Enjoy your time with your friends, families, and significant others! It's good to track your calories and mindful of what you are eating; however, one day won't make or break your healthy plan. Just remember to continue your health journey after Thanksgiving.

Source: U.S. News

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TRS Blue Cross BlueShield of Texas

Did you know that your plan pays 100% for your checkups?! Your health is the first priority! Don't forget to take some time to schedule an appointment as yearly checkup is one of the most important factors to stay healthy.

Need help finding finding a PCP or have questions about your health coverage? Here are some ways:

-Download the BCBSTX App. Text BCBSTXAPP to 33633.

-Log in to Blue Access for Members.

-Call a Personal Health Guide at 1-866-355-5999.

Jokes of the Month Answers

1. Because he had his own drumsticks.

2. Fast food.

3. Peach gobbler.

4. He didn't want people to think he was a chicken.

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Newsletter Questions/Suggestions/Comments?


Jose Villasenor (Strategist) | Veronica Maples | Brian Kim | Nedra Brown (Cluster Leads)

Jovillasenor@irvingisd.net | Brikim@irvingisd.net | Vmaples@irvingisd.net | Nbrown@irvingisd.net

972-600-5249 O | 972-600-3133 M


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