Mental Fitness & the People Experience

PERKS Editorial Team

PERKS Editorial Team


March 9, 2022

Mental Fitness x People Experience

Ryan Komori, CEO at Savor Lining - "Mental Fitness & the People Experience"

How is mental fitness distinct from mental health? How can resilience build a more positive People Experience? Ryan Komori, Founder & CEO of Savor Lining, shares his perspective on how to encourage engagement and psychological safety on your team.


You can download the episode here.
You can also find us on: 
Show notes:
  • Ryan Komori is the founder & CEO of Savor Lining
    • Savor Lining aims to educate teams on various mental health topics in a non-threatening environment.
    • Evelyn shared in the opening episode of season 2 about her personal journey with anxiety and depression.
      • It’s a learning process of managing stress, interpreting traumatic events, and communicating with your team.
      • 1 in 5 adults experience struggles with their mental health
  • What is mental fitness and why does it enhance a positive People Experience? What is the difference between mental health and mental fitness?
    • Mental health often is the reaction or response to a stressful event, whereas mental fitness is more proactive.
      • Like exercising builds up muscle in the body, strengthening our minds will prepare us for difficult times.
    • The spotlight is on positive psychology or wellness at work initiatives
      • Everyone benefits when mindfulness is done well
  • What is the mission of Savor Lining and how has that been received by organizations?
    • There has been a significant need and awareness of mental health initiatives since the pandemic
    • Building a regular mental fitness practice into the workday addresses these ongoing needs
      • Also provides a unique opportunity for team bonding
  • Changes observed in the professional landscape toward mental health now vs. when Savor Lining was founded in early 2020
    • Many options when it comes to mindfulness apps
    • Savor Lining can be thought of as "the step before" therapy or more traditional support programs
  • Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs)
    • Often part of benefits; more general plan that sits between a health program and other support (e.g. financial assistance)
    • Typically can be used to find a therapist for 4-6 sessions
    • Savor Lining is distinct from an EAP - at the intersection between wellness, employee engagement, learning/development
      • depends on the needs of that particular team
    • Addresses the increasing integration between work and life, blending, “bleisure
  • What has been your experience with the relationship between resilience and productivity, whether individually and/or on teams you’ve led?
    • For the many workers who are knowledge workers, what is the equivalent of mental exercise?
      • Again, remembering the analogy of professional athletes training and recovering
    • For PERKS, the Savor Lining sessions have been a great team experience and helped us incorporate wellness into our day. 
      • Something valuable in allowing our team to be vulnerable in a safe space
    • Happy people = happy employees = better productivity
  • In a previous blog, we differentiated between burnout, languishing, and resilience. How does being mentally strong prevent burnout and languishing?
    • Resilience comes from something - past experience, knowledge of your mind or toolsets.
      • It looks different from person to person.
      • Try out new techniques and build habits!
  • What are some best mental health practices you use?
    • Mindfulness, meditation, journaling
      • Ryan does these first thing in the morning, but find what works for you.
    • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or change apps (ask your work what is available for your organization)
    • You won't necessarily feel the benefits of meditating after only 1-2 days. Be consistent!
  • How do we ensure our team is practicing good mental health?
    • Have Savor Lining work with you! :)
    • It's a lot harder to do at scale. It begins with company leadership and trickles down to other team members.
      • How does leadership convey culture to everyone else? Communication is vital.
    • Not one-size-fits-all. Everyone manages their mental and emotional health differently.
  • Earlier this season, we spoke about what kinds of perks Millennials and Gen Z are looking for at work. Are more organizations offering mental health resources? How do you see that influencing the way that orgs retain talent?
    • Mental health resources are a given nowadays - so many more exist
      • The most important thing is getting employees to actually use and engage with these resources
      • Solve the engagement challenge by picking benefits that resonate with people
    • Paradigm shift: People come first
      • What are creative ways for people to stay healthy and whole?
  • What would your advice be to people whose leaders aren’t on the same page about mental health initiatives?
    • Encourage leaders to look at the trends. Mental health applies to everyone, not just certain workers.
      • Staying competitive in the long-term
  • How can organizations help support team members who need or want therapy? 
    • Savor Lining is offering a Therapy 101 class for client organizations to engage with on their own
      • People are thinking about therapy or researching it, but must overcome the hurdles of stigma, cost, etc.
      • Providing anonymous conversations with a licensed therapist that breaks down barriers and discomfort
      • But it differs across companies and individuals
    • To go back to the People Experience, why is mental wellness so important for organizations to keep top of mind?
      • People are at the core of organizations thriving. Mentally fit, resilient people will be the cornerstone for building a strong business.
  • Ultimately, it comes back to treating people right and the human component of culture.
  • Where can people find Savor Lining if they’re interested in using your services for their teams?