Are These Warning Indicators Showing Up in You or Your Team?

By: Kathleen Gramzay Monday February 4, 2019 comments

Indicators are a great tool for managing business. For example, market indicators, inventory-turn indicators, and closing ratios are all helpful data to understand what is (or isn’t) happening in your business.  Knowing how to spot and properly interpret them means the difference between being blindsided, prepared for challenges or ready for opportunities.  

When it comes to humans, reading indicators may seem more complex but it doesn’t have to be.  It’s a matter of understanding the underlying drivers, what triggers them, and then having the ability to shift accordingly. People are expected to show up, do their job well, and to be collaborative team players regardless of external influences. However, when stimuli trigger the survival side of the nervous system it overrides the restoration and positive social engagement side and things often start to go sideways. 

There are two highly pervasive and often ignored stimuli: musculoskeletal pain/tension, and stress.  Seventy-four per percent of lost work days are musculoskeletal-related, at an annual cost of $872 Billion annually.1   Studies on the effects of stress are now well documented. 

It's interesting to note that according to Nate Reiger, PhD, in Conflict without Casualties, “Negative conflict, manifested in workplace drama, costs the US economy more than $350 Billion in the currency of broken relationships, dysfunctional teams, morale and engagement problems and failure to thrive.” 

It’s impactful to understand then that physical pain, stress, concerns over job security, health care coverage, or family issues are drivers giving their own directives to the BodyMind vehicles your team members are working and relating through.   

Like good business system indicators, the BodyMind shows signs when trouble is brewing.   How many of these warning indicators have you been missing or simply write off as today’s “normal”?

  • more people out sick or some frequently sick
  • more doctor or therapy appointments
  • faster consumption of the break room bottle of advil
  • a higher number of prescription claims
  • a higher number of injuries
  • more complaints of lack of sleep or digestion trouble
  • more frustration, anger, or dissension among team members
  • less or non-engagement, apathy, members “checked out”, “just going through the motions”
  • more drug, alcohol, or domestic violence related issues

These are indicators that people are operating predominately in emergency mode. The emergency fight/flight or freeze system is on; the healthy, creative, collaborative side of the nervous system is off.  Unhealthy coping skills are the default.

While “emergency” has become the daily operating system for many, it is clearly not sustainable. Moreover, it is neurologically impossible for humans to express their best selves when operating from it!

Many companies spend significant sums on job-related and people development training to increase performance yet wonder why the results don’t always demonstrate a commensurate return on investment.

Interpreting these indicators correctly can lead first to recognizing underlying drivers of health and behavior that impact humans to process information and function at their best.

Directing the self-healing mechanisms of the BodyMind to clear itself and switch the nervous system back to creativity and collaboration empowering individuals and businesses to thrive, is the next evolutionary step.  Are you ready to take it?


(1.United States Bone and Joint Initiative, the U.S. National Action Network of the Global Alliance for Musculoskeletal Health 2015.)

About the Author: Kathleen Gramzay

Kathleen Gramzay, BCTMB is Body/Mind Performance Expert, 20-yr Board Certified Massage Therapist, and Developer of Kinessage® Self Care and Mindful Resilience.  Her mission is to empower people to release their stress, chronic tension & pain to live more joyful, productive and healthy lives.   If you would like to learn more about Kinessage® Self-Care or the Mindful Resilience programs, contact Kathleen