Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan

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Bibliographic Information
Journal Al-Idah
Title Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Author(s) Qaisar, Muhammad Nawaz, Nasreen Tahir Malik
Volume 31
Issue 2
Year 2015
Pages 84-103
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Chicago 16th Qaisar, Muhammad Nawaz, Nasreen Tahir Malik. "Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan." Al-Idah 31, no. 2 (2015).
APA 6th Qaisar, M. N., Malik, N. T. (2015). Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Al-Idah, 31(2).
MHRA Qaisar, Muhammad Nawaz, Nasreen Tahir Malik. 2015. 'Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan', Al-Idah, 31.
MLA Qaisar, Muhammad Nawaz, Nasreen Tahir Malik. "Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan." Al-Idah 31.2 (2015). Print.
Harvard QAISAR, M. N., MALIK, N. T. 2015. Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Al-Idah, 31.
خواتین کے ساتھ مروجہ معاشرتی رویوں کا اسلامی تعلیمات کے تناظر میں جائزہ
دال و مدلول کا باہمی ربط و تعلق: عصری رجحانات، قرآن و سنت پر اس کے اثرات
اسلام اور دوسرے مذاہب میں خدا کے تصور کا تحقیقی و تقابلی جائزہ
پشتو زبان میں سیرت النبیﷺ پر اولین کتاب قلب السیر کا تحقیقی جائزہ
دینی مدارس اور مفکرین کی آراء
تدوین و مشتملات ارتھ شاستر
سرکاری مناصب و ذرائع کا ذمہ دارانہ استعمال: تعلیمات نبویﷺ کی روشنی میں
بنیادی انسانی حقوق کا اسلام اور اقوام متحدہ کے عالمی منشور کی روشنی میں تقابلی جائزہ
مردہ خوری کے حوالے سے فقہاء کے آراء کا تقابلی مطالعہ
اسلامی حکومت میں غیر مسلم اقلیتوں کے حقوق کا جائزہ: معاہدات نبوی کی روشنی میں
مسیحى دینیات اور بىن المذاہب تعلقات
التوضيح المفيد لما وصف به الرسم القرآني من التجريد
تأثير الفقر على حياة الشاعر الجاهلي: دراسة تحليلية
البعد الأخلاقي في سياسة الرسول صلى الله عليه وسلم
الحديث الضعيف وما يتعلق به من الأحكام
مزیل الأوهام فیما یتعلق بالاحکام عن المخنث والخنثی
المقال الدينى عند محمود تيمور
Islam and Society: Role of the Departments of Islamic Studies, an Analytical Study
Doctrine of Peace: An Islamic Perspective, an Analysis of the Hindrances in Peace Making Process
Conceptualizing Poverty in Capitalism and Islam
Portrayal of Positive Psychological Capital in Quran
Authoritative Position of Investor and Scope of Liability in Modarabah Contract: Classical and Contemporary Jurists Perspective
Determinants of Employee Health and Happiness: A Wellness Perceptive from Islamic and General Point of View at Public Sector Organizations in Islamic Republic of Pakistan
Role of Male Teachers in Islamic-Ethics Based Sociability Skills Promotion Among Learners in Government Primary Schools of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Insecurity in a New Silk Road
Islamic Concept of Crime and Punishment: A Critical Appraisal of Robert Spencer’s Views
The Circumstances Where the Quantum of Punishment Prescribed by Islam for Certain Crimes Can Be Reduced or Enhanced
Which of Abrahim’s Son Was Sacrificed?
The Life and Works of Ahmad Deedat: A Muslim Scholar of Christian Bible
Exploring the Role of “Jihad” in the Establishment of Universal Peace
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Islam is the complete code of life and contemporary workplaces are no exception being well positive domain of health and a source of happiness. Healthy and happy employees symbolize healthy and happy organizations. Workplace health promotion is attracting global attention to nurture employee wellbeing and happiness as a catalyst for organizational excellence. This study explore wellbeing perspectives of employee development through a qualitative survey involving 228 employees of selected public sector organizations in Pakistan. Findings highlighted key determinants of employee wellness (health and happiness) calling for a focused and strategic attention of organizational management. Aligned with multidimensional approach to holistic wellness, the participants’ responses were grouped into eight dimensions in the order of importance based on number of coding references; intellectual, physical, financial, environmental, occupational, emotional, social, and spiritual wellness. Outcomes are examined in Islamic perspectives and found well aligned with the teachings of Quran and Sunnah.


Islam is the religion of falah- happiness and wellbeing - for all mankind. It is the divine source of guidance in every sphere of life. Allah commands, “So compete with each other in doing good deeds” [1]. Modern day world can equally take advantage of universal Islamic philosophy. Governments strive to maximize economic conditions, health, wellbeing, and happiness of their citizens. Competitive, innovative, and inclusive public sector is imperative for realization of national development goals. Public servants, being key partners of national growth, need to be highly motivated and committed to service delivery and produce the desired change[2]. Organizations compete for highly committed employees who identify themselves with the organization and actively participate to achieve organizational objectives[3]. Public sector organizations in Pakistan are often criticized for having inefficient public servants and thereby inefficient public service delivery. The Dilemma is that employees remain busy at stressful and demanding workplaces for more than one-third of their daily time, grumble over their hectic official routine and imbalanced professional, personal, family, and social lives, expected productivity outcomes remain unaccomplished, and they leave workplaces to robustly pursue the undone the next day and the next human resource managers remain concerned with efficient and effective human resource development strategies to outstrip productive organizational outcomes through variety of measures. Imperative to organizational success are its healthy and productive employees. To compete in modern economic outfits, today’s workplaces are demanding productivity outcomes from their employees more than ever before which obviously influence individuals’ personal and professional lives since both are interrelated with reciprocal effects on each other[4]. Lack of health and wellness affects both the employees through physical, psychological and behavioral consequences, and employers through increased health care costs, absenteeism, presentism, and reduced productivity[5]. Workplace wellness measures are now recognized as a tool to enhance employee health and wellbeing to the ultimate benefit of organizational excellence[6]. Success of such programs mainly depends upon wellness leadership and managerial support since their understanding and commitment to create a supportive workplace culture supports employee health and wellbeing[7]. This prescribes for the organizations to know what really matters to employees, their role and responsibility towards employee health promotion, and design human resource practices that support employee health and wellbeing[8].

Objectives of study:

Research on employee wellbeing and happiness is considered of high importance because of its positive contribution towards organizational performance. Concept of holistic wellness in public sector of Pakistan is quite at embryonic stage owing to lack of top management commitment, policy, and budgetary support directed at research, designing, and implementation of workplace wellness programs. To have an implicit contextual foundation for improved wellness policy direction, this study explored the wellbeing perspectives of employees of public sector anticorruption and regulatory organizations in Pakistan to understand as to; (a) which specific wellbeing measures should be considered as a potential component of employee wellness programs in selected organizations?, (b) which particular dimensions of wellness call for a more focused attention as a tool to cultivate wellness culture at public sector workplaces?, and (c) discuss how the outcomes of this study are aligned with the teachings of Islam.


Health, among innumerable blessing of Allah, is the greatest favor bestowed upon human beings. Islam encourages acts that promote health, wellbeing, and happiness and discourages the acts that harm these pursuits of human life. “A strong (healthy) believer is better and is more lovable to Allah than a weak believer. Strive for that which will benefit you, seek the help of Allah, and do not feel helpless”[9]. Allah loves the people most who ask for good health(Al-aafiyah)from him (Tirmidhi). Islam directs the believers to take sufficient care of their bodily health by saying, “Eat and drink and be not prodigal” [10]and “And Allah loves those who make themselves clean and pure” [11]. “Everyone will be asked on the Day of Judgment as to how he spent his life, how he used his knowledge, how he earned and spent his money and for what he used his health”. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) said, "There are two blessings which many people lose; health and free time for doing well"[12] .

Happiness, characterized by a feeling of peace of mind, tranquility, a sense of wellbeing, and a relaxed disposition, is an elusive aspiration of human beings. It is inspired by strong faith and refers to enrichment of soul. Allah promises the believers who do well to certainly make their lives happy, and reward them for the best they did[13]. Whosoever follows Allah’s guidance shall have no fear or grief [14]and whosoever turns away from the message of Allah will have a miserable life [15]. Being content with Allah’s blessings can bring happiness. Hearts find rest in remembrance of Allah [16]. Holy Prophet(PBUH) said, “Look at those inferior to you, and do not look at those superior to you. Thereby, you would be able to appreciate better the benevolence of Allah bestowed upon you”. Messenger of Allah said, "Happiness is due to him who is guided to Islam and possesses provision that suffices him for his day and remains content". “So the people of Paradise will have happiness”[17].

Health and happiness are interrelated concepts. Holistic wellness is a state of healthy and dynamic balance among different dimension of life such as physical, spiritual, emotional, intellectual, social, occupational, financial, and environmental[18]. Workplace wellness is increasingly being regarded as a source of organizational success[19]. This multidimensional phenomenon cannot be fully captured by research in any one field such as medicine or psychology. Other fields including management need to contribute in one way or the other to have a more sophisticated, unified, and interdisciplinary understanding on employee wellbeing. Making healthy lifestyle choices for personal wellness is generally regarded as a matter of personal responsibility[20]. Societal living, however, makes man dependent on others in many ways. Prochaska’s trans theoretical model of behavior change explains how an individual may take personal initiatives to move from pre-contemplation to contemplation, preparation, and action stages of change; however, to sustain those changes at maintenance stage and to avoid risk of relapses to lower stages there would always be a need for external support[21]. This external support is also often required to initiate the desired change process that is to realize a need for change, getting prepared for change, and setting way forward for taking required action. Health and wellness are linked with reality through everyday experiences of organizational members at work and life which are of concern to managers, executives, practitioners, organizational scientists, and researchers[22].

Traditional health system makes people to wait until they get some illness and then consult a medical professional for evaluation and prescription of treatment for their condition on fractional basis of the body, hence, putting the matter to someone else. Contrarily, wellness is the matter of self-responsibility, self-assessment, and continuous engagement in learning and making healthy lifestyle changes that support whole person health and wellness. Chronic conditions[23] such as diabetes, heart and pulmonary diseases mainly develop as a result of unhealthy lifestyles; physical inactivity, poor nutrition, smoking, and alcohol consumption. Lower quality of life, premature death, disability, and higher healthcare costs are some of the major burdens associated with poor lifestyle choices. Employers’ access to employees at an age when their health trajectory can still be changed is indicative of the need for taking advantage of workplace wellness measures covering both the shorter and long term health and wellness goals of employees. A sizeable reduction in health risk factors and enhanced productivity (reduced absenteeism and increased performance) can be materialized through well implemented multi-component workplace health promotion program[24]. Workplace health promotion involves a combination of educational, organizational, and environmental activities that support health of employees’ as well as their families. These may range from a single intervention to a comprehensive health and fitness programs. The idea has captured attention of health educators and corporate policy makers[25].An effective way to reach individual employees and provide them an environment that is safe and supportive to their health is to take initiatives for workplace health promotion 17. Six widely recognized success factors for wellness programs are attributed to engaged leadership, strategic alignment with organizational identity, a high quality program designed with broader scope and relevance, extended accessibility, establishing partnerships, and effective communications[26].

Worksite wellness is primarily concerned with positively changing health behavior of employees. A paradigmatic shift of wellness strategies from individual oriented wellness programs to broader formulations that emphasis on joint impact of physical, social, environmental, non-occupational settings, job-person fit, and work polices may be of more help to achieve holistic employee wellbeing[27]. Management can enhance employee commitment to the organization by increasing their satisfaction with compensation, policies, training and work conditions and also that managers can enhance organizational commitment of their subordinates by communicating that their contribution and wellbeing are highly valued[28]. Most employees’ roughly spend more than one third (about 30% - 50%) of their daily time at workplaces making them attractive and accessible locations to reach adults for their health education. This sets a need for undertaking workplace initiatives that support healthy lifestyle changes among employees[29]. Workplaces may undertake various activities to facilitate their employees in making and sustaining healthy lifestyle choices through enhanced awareness, motivation, skills, and supporting opportunities[30].

Conceptual framework:

Sizeable reduction in health risk factors can be produced through well implemented multi-component workplace wellness promotion programs. Workplaces are the best places to initiate various activities that facilitate employees through enhanced awareness, motivation, skills, and supporting opportunities in making healthy lifestyle choices the easiest choices for them [31].Given this conceptual understanding, Figure 1 show different types of workplace wellness promotion programs can lead to desired level of employee wellness.

Picture 1.png

Figure 1: Relationship between workplace wellness programs and employee wellness


This qualitative study explored employee perspectives on wellness in an interpretive paradigm within the context of public sector organizations in Pakistan. The employees themselves can best understand where things are going well and where they need a change as well as where they need external help to initiate and sustain the required changes. Participants for this study were sampled from supervisory level staff, first line managers, middle managers, and the top level managers working in public sector12 anticorruption and 12 regulatory organizations located at Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Lahore, Karachi, Quetta, and Peshawar (constituting a total of 105 organizational units) in Pakistan. These organizations are strategic national entities to ensure public sector efficiency and effectiveness through effective regulation, monitoring, and combating ill practices. Their performance directly influences the performance of all other organizations and ultimately the economy, health, education, poverty, and societal development.

Data was collected through a questionnaire based survey using simple random sampling approach. Questionnaire was sent to the Heads of selected organizations with a cover letter requesting that same be got randomly filled from at least three employees of supervisory level staff (BS-14 to 16), first line managers (BS-16 to 17), middle managers (BS-18 to 19), and top level managers (BS-20 to 21)from within their organization. Sample consisted of 228 participants who voluntarily responded to the survey request. Survey questionnaire consisted of two parts. In Part-A, the participants’ demographic information was sought whereas in Part-B the participants’ were oriented that “The research indicates that employees who don’t feel well in one way or the other negatively affect organizations’ bottom line. The concept of workplace wellness has potential to optimize human functioning through balanced and healthy lives. Reflect upon your current level of wellbeing; where things are going well and where you want to see a change?” and were requested to respond to the open ended question “Can you suggest some measures that your organization should take to enhance your wellness in ways that allow achieving your highest potential?” Content analysis of qualitative data was carried out using coding technique; themes on suggested wellness measures were identified and coded on relevant nodes. Microsoft Excel 2010, SPSS 20, and QSR N Vivo 10 software were used as analytical tools in this research. Findings were then discussed in Islamic and contemporary perspectives.

Data analysis:

Case wise responses of participants’ along with demographic profile were entered in Microsoft Excel worksheet which was later imported into SPSS software for demographic analysis and N Vivo software for qualitative content analysis; parent nodes were created according to eight dimensions of wellness and child nodes were created according to major themes on wellness measures identified from participants’ response for thematic analysis. Tree maps (Figure 2 and 3) were created using nodes compared by number of coding reference to draw insights on research questions. Word tag cloud, where word size indicates the frequency of repetition of a word by the participants, reflected the words ‘health, wellness, environment, work, training, activities, employee, social, and physical’ as most frequently used words by the participants. This provided insights that major focus of participants’ was on the need for employee development by under taking such measures that support employee health and wellness. Finally, the tree maps were used to express and interpret findings on research question posed in this study.


Findings of this study are presented in this section to reflect; (1) the participants’ characteristics, (2) the potential wellness measures as suggested by the participants based on the frequency of themes coded at different nodes with the help of their response patterns on survey questionnaire, and (3)the dimensions of wellness in the order of importance based on coding references to understand which particular dimension calls for a more focused and strategic attention aiming at employee wellbeing for their better contribution towards efficient and effective public service delivery in the country.

Participants’ characteristics:

A total of 228 participants responded to the survey. Participants in this study represented 22 public sector organizations; 11 anticorruption and 11 regulatory organizations. There were 81.1% males and 18.9% female participants. 72.3% of the participants were found below the age of 45 years and 26.8% were found above the age of 45 years. 45.6% were having a master level qualification, 5.7% were having MS/M.Phil level, .4% having doctoral level, 17.5% were having graduation level qualification, and 24.1% were holding intermediate level qualification. 45.2% participants had 1-5 years of experience, 25.9% had 6-10 years of experience, 7.9% had 11-15 years of experience, 9.6% had 16-20 years of experience, and 11.4% had more than 20 years of professional experience at their credit. Presently, 9.6% reported as working on a supervisory level position, 29.8% working as a first line manager, 41.7% working as a middle manager, and 18.9% reported as holding a top management position within their respective organizations. Participants reported their city of work as Islamabad (31.1%), Rawalpindi (12.3%), Lahore (17.5%), Karachi (14.0%), Peshawar (12.7%), and Quetta (12.3%).

Potential wellness measures:

Well designed and well implemented evidence based programs have greater potential to generate desired health and financial outcomes. Likelihood of achieving positive results of health promotion programs depends upon organizational goals, culture, and best promising practices that facilitate success9. Best practices could only promise best outcomes when those are undertaken on the basis of an effective wellness need assessment. This research explored various aspects of wellbeing that need more focus as component of potential workplace wellness measures in selected public sector context. Professional trainings, workshops and seminars, competitive salary, performance incentives, conducive environment, spiritual learning, sports, cleanliness, gym, regular medical checkups, fairness, get together, workplace religious activities, exercises, rest and recreation, inflation coverage of pay, environmental awareness, housing, walk, judicious workload, performance appreciation, plantation, smoke free, and emotional learning emerged as some significant determinants of wellness in order of importance on the basis of number of coding references.

Dimensions of wellness :

This research explored potential workplace wellness measures and grouped them in terms of dimensions of wellness by coding relevant themes on relevant child and parent nodes. Dimensions of wellness are ordered based on inferences drawn from the frequency of participants’ response about a particular dimension to understand which dimension needs more attention as a tool to cultivate wellness culture within given workplace contexts). The findings indicated towards a strong focus of participants on employees’ intellectual wellness as an area which needs more attention for improvement through potential workplace wellness programs. This is indicative of a situation that current perceived state of intellectual wellness of employees in selected organization is not very encouraging. Second most important area is occupational wellness of employees which needs to be addressed as an essential component of workplace wellness programs. Third aspect that got importance in this study is physical wellness of employees. Forth important dimension emerged with a need for improvement is environmental wellness. Fifth important area calling for attention of workplace wellness programs is the financial wellness. Sixth aspect emphasized is the emotional wellness followed by social wellness and spiritual wellness as the seventh and eighth dimensions in the order of importance as talked about in this study.

Discussion in Islamic and contemporary perspectives:

“There is certainly, in the life of Rasool-Allah, the Best Model for the one whose hope is in Allah” [32]. Improved management practices are required for human flourishing at workplaces[33]. An individual needs multidimensional physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual wellness to positively relate to his inner world and build healthy relationships with others, community at large, and the environment he lives in to effectively relate and contribute to his outer world[34]. Many workplace elements ranging from health and safety practices, work design, aggression, and dysfunctional employee behaviors to the nature of boss-subordinate relationship may implicate employee health and performance. Employees experiencing lower levels of health and wellbeing may reflect lower productivity, lower quality decisions, absenteeism, presentism, and diminished contribution to the organizational wellbeing. Greater personal wellness is inversely related to the risk of hospital events that is a lower wellbeing predicts an increased usage of hospital services. Risk of hospital visits is found higher in older adults which points towards the need for youth to capitalize over opportunities of participation in wellness activities in order to reduce their risk of illness and hospital events as they age[35]. This may be taken as a foundation for policy direction on workplace wellness promotion programs to decide which specific area should receive more attention or investment aimed at harnessing employees’ wellness and happiness to the ultimate benefit of organizations. To achieve greater benefits, wider perspectives on employee development programs must be considered.

Exposure to learning resources: Intellectual wellness:

Pursuit of knowledge is a way to eternal happiness. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said “If a person follows a path for acquiring knowledge, Allah will make easy the passage to paradise for him” and that “Seeking knowledge is a duty upon every Muslim”. “Allah grants wisdom to whom He pleases, and whoever is granted wisdom, he indeed is given a great good and none but men of understanding mind”[36]. Knowledgeable people are given high ranks[37]. Holy Prophet (PBUH) used to say, “O Allah, I seek refuge with You from knowledge that is of no benefit, from a supplication that is not heard, from a heart that does not fear (You) and from a soul that is not satisfied” and “O Allah, benefit me by that which you have taught me, and teach me that which will benefit me”. Believers are taught to pray as “O my Lord! Increase me in knowledge” [38]

Adaptation to upcoming economic and technological changes is important for sustainable success in competitive business markets. Focus of participants was on the need for creating a workplace culture that support learning. Learning is a great source competitive advantage for both the employees and their organizations[39]. Workplace interventions can stimulate employees’ intellectual development and growth by changing their learning behavior such as being informed on social, political, and scientific updates, seeking new learning opportunities, and improving qualifications[40]. Employee wellness includes promotion of intellectual capital which employees bring to workplace in terms of know-how, expertise, experience, lead ability, creativity, and interpersonal skills. It also includes initiatives aimed at promoting health and fitness of employees[41].Participants focused on the need for extensive professional trainings, workshops, seminars, spiritual learning, environmental awareness, emotional learning, group discussions, mentoring, wellness education, library, creative learning, higher education, financial education, and research updates. Employee training plays a significant role in discovering new and practical ways of doing business in changing market environments[42]. Investment in an organization’s training and development activities promotes learning practices which in turn affects organization’s innovative developments and performance. However, focus of this corporate expenditure should be on internal trainings since a financial support on employee development through external education returns significant negative effect on innovative performance and insignificant effect on learning practices[43].

Organizational support& justice: Occupational wellness:

“All men go out early in the morning and sell themselves”[44]. Humans are an honorable being. Allah, the exalted one, says, “We have certainly created man in the best of stature”[45].Islamic conviction emphasize upon helping, benefaction, unity, and solidarity. Allah commands, “And cooperate in righteousness and piety, but do not cooperate in sin and aggression. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is severe in penalty”[46]. Allah is compassionate to one who is compassionate to the others. Mercy is not for the one who is not merciful. “A Muslim is a brother of Muslim, he neither wrongs him nor does hand him over to one who does him wrong. If anyone fulfills his brother’s needs, Allah will fulfill his needs; if one relieves a Muslim of his troubles, Allah will relieve his troubles on the Day of Resurrection” (Muslim). Whosoever relieves from a believer some grief pertaining to this world, Allah will relieve from him some grief pertaining to the Hereafter”. "Allah will aid a servant (of His) so long as the servant aids his brother”. “The believing men and women are protecting friends of one another. They enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong”[47] “The believers are nothing else than brothers”[48]. "None of you will believe until you love for your brother what you love for yourself".

There is a need to create collaborative environments to support each other in a judicious manner. Organizations can enhance employees’ satisfaction and commitment to the organizations by undertaking and communicating such measures that make them feel that their contribution and wellbeing are highly valued. Workplace health and wellness programs may instill a feeling of perceived organizational support which in turn is associated with employees’ job satisfaction, organizational citizenship behavior, and work performance[49]. Employee perceived organizational support is closely related to job satisfaction and organizational commitment[50]. This perceived organizational support goes beyond just providing the tools and training needed to do their jobs. Organizational support also includes promoting employee health and wellness which is now a growing trend with greater potential of positive outcomes; reduced healthcare costs, increased employee engagement, enhanced productivity, reduced absenteeism, presentism, stress and turnover, and higher levels of employee commitment to their organizations. Employees expectations of financing facilities for housing, education and short term loans, career growth, stress control, teamwork, use of latest technology, facilitating approach, sufficient manpower, improved work procedures, pick and drop, responsibility-authority balance, effective human resource polices, shared responsibility, effective management style, and provision of sufficient resources were group as perceived organizational support.

Justice defines social relationships that may be implicated in work settings. “Allah commands justice and fair dealing...”[51]. Islamic philosophy emphasis on justice as an obligation and forbids injustice. Allah says, “O you who believe! Stand out firmly for justice, as witnesses to Allah, even if it be against yourselves, your parents, and your relatives, or whether it is against the rich or the poor...”[52]. “We sent Our Messengers with clear signs and sent down with them the book and the measure in order to establish justice among the people…” [53]. “Let not the hatred of a people were you away from justice. Be just, for this is closest to righteousness…”[54]. “The way of blame is only against those who treat the people unjustly, and resort to aggression without provocation. These have incurred a painful retribution” [55]. Justice is also a personal virtue and a standard of moral excellence that a believer is encouraged to attain as Allah says, “…Be just, for it is closest to God-consciousness…” [56]. “…If you judge, judge between them with justice…” [57]. “…When you speak, speak with justice, even if it is against someone close to you…”[58].Holy Prophet (PBUH) advised, “avoid being unjust to one another” (Muslim) and that “There should be neither harming nor reciprocating harm”[59].

Participants’ emphasized over the need for fairness, judicious workload, equity, communication, work time management, merit, right person at right place, proper job description for role clarity, and setting realistic goals. Perception of justice can foster one’s satisfaction and effectiveness at work. Workplace relational justice has mediated effect on employee health through positive and negative emotions[60]. Human development is influenced by difference kinds of justice. Different aspects of wellness and fairness have been separately studied in research but their interconnection of these two has got little attention of researchers and scholars. Resultantly, there is a paucity of interventions aimed at promotion of wellness and fairness in concert. Workplace interventions aimed at achieving human resource development and wellbeing should be supported by various types of justice[61]. Organizational justice; optimal or suboptimal conditions of justice and vulnerable or persistent conditions of injustice can lead to a diverse range of wellness outcomes such as thriving, coping, confronting, and sufferings through a series of psychological processes within personal, interpersonal, organizational, and community contexts. Empirical evidence suggests that justice can influence wellbeing within each of these contexts. Advances in wellness and fairness are needed to promote human welfare[62]. He said, “The pursuit of wellness without fairness will not yield the outcomes individuals and communities need”.

==Physical health: Physical wellbeing==.:

Keeping the body in good health is a responsibility. Physical health helps to perform obligations such as offer prayers, fasting, jihad, hajj, work for earning livelihood, and helping others in society. Islam’s holistic approach to health includes treating our bodies with respect and nourishing them with, not only faith, but also with lawful, nutritious food. Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) said, “Your body has right over you” [63], and that “A strong (healthy) believer is better and more beloved to Allah than the weak believer” (Muslim).“… the best of men for you to hire is the strong, the trustworthy” [64]. Implementing a suitable diet; choosing wholesome food and avoiding unwholesome is essential to good health as Allah says, “Eat of the good things which we have provided for you.” [65], “Eat of what is lawful and wholesome on the earth”[66], “Eat and drink, but avoid excess” [67]. Physical activities are also encouraged in Islam. Holy Prophet (PBUH) said, “Any action without the remembrance of God is either a diversion or heedlessness excepting four acts: Walking from target to target [during archery practice], training a horse, playing with one’s family, and learning to swim”. Hazrat Ibn Umar said, 'I am walking because I saw the Messenger of Allah walking, and I hasten because I saw the Messenger of Allah hasten”[68].

Physical health and fitness are important elements of personal wellness. Inactive living may lead to most of lifestyle related chronic diseases such as heart issues, diabetes, stroke, and cancer[69].Exorbitant health care costs are indicative of a large proportion of unhealthy people mainly due to lack of exercise and fitness which can affect organizational bottom lines. Healthier employees are known for their increased productivity and lesser absence from work. The employers can be helpful by providing workplace wellness program that would be recognized by the employees as desired perk. Participants highlighted the need for comprehensive workplace wellness promotion measures to motivate and facilitate the employees for taking part in physical activities such as sports, gym, exercise, rest and recreation, walk, and club membership. Physical activity has a considerable potential for improving employee health, quality of life and workplace productivity[70]. He found that workplace wellness programs tailored to individual needs are found most successful. Incidental physical activity in and around workplace have more potential to influence work performance than ‘organized’ programs. For behavioral adjustment to the organization, he recommended a need to encourage managerial support for wellness programs. Sedentary adults can increase their total wellness by reducing their sedentary time and increasing physical activity levels from light to waking, moderate, and vigorous[71]. Nutrition is an essential component of human survival. Interest to understand how foods affect consumers’ perceived wellbeing has grown in the last decade due to the increasing need to modify dietary patterns. Participants place emphasize on the need for provision of healthy food choices and safe drinking water for employees at workplace. Anything even more important than health promotion is the access to safe drinking water being vital component of human life[72]. Poor nutritional patterns may to lifestyle related diseases such as diabetes, stroke, heart issues, and cancer. In addition to hedonic and emotional aspects, foods influence physical wellbeing with regard to cholesterol levels, hypertension, and cardiac conditions[73]. There is an increased felt need for modification of behavioral patterns towards consumption of foods by making healthy dietary choices due to its association with perceived wellbeing.

Clean and healthy atmosphere: Environmental wellness:

Cleanliness is part of faith. Allah is pure and He loves purity (Muslim). No joy can prevail on earth unless clean fresh air, abundant pure water, and fertile land are available. “From the land that is clean and good, by the will of its Cherisher, springs up produce, (rich) after its kind: but from the land that is bad, springs up nothing but that which is niggardly: thus do we explain the signs by various (symbols) to those who are grateful[74]. "It is Allah who made for you the earth a place of settlement and the sky a ceiling and formed you and perfected your forms and provided you with good things"[75]. "And We made the sky a protected ceiling (canopy), but they, from its signs, are turning away"[76] “Eat and drink from the provision of Allah, and do not commit abuse on the earth, spreading corruption"[77]. Islam teaches for protection and conservation of environment through plantation of trees, avoiding unnecessary cuttings of trees, and cultivation of foods. Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) said, “There is none amongst the Muslims who plants a tree or sows seeds, and then a bird, or a person or an animal eats from it, but is regarded as a charitable gift for him”‏. We recognize that we are accountable for all our actions as Allah says, “Corruption has appeared on land and sea because of what people’s own hands have wrought, so that they may taste something of what they have done; so that hopefully they will turn back[78].

Workplaces need to be physically and psychologically healthy[79]. Conducive and pleasant natural environments enable employees to achieve personal wellness and organizational performance goals. Human relationship to nature is associated with higher levels of holistic wellbeing. However, this aspect of nature relatedness is usually found absent in workplace wellness models[80]. Participants focused on the need for creating pleasant and stimulating work environment through fostering conduciveness, cleanliness, plantation, smoke free places, appropriate work spaces, and compliance with environmental regulations. Environmental education, environmental law enforcement, and spending on improvement of environment can be of great help in fostering a healthy workplace environment.

Efficient pay structure: Financial wellness:

Allah commands, “O’ you who have believed, fulfill all contracts”[81], “Do not devour another’s property wrongfully”, and that“ Fulfill the measure and weight and do not deprive people of their due[82]. Holy Prophet (PBUH) said, “Pay the laborer his wages before his sweat dries” [83]and that “Your employees are your brothers upon whom Allah has given you authority, so if a Muslim has another person under his control, he/she should feed them with the like of what one eats and clothe them with the like of what one wears and you should not overburden them with what they cannot bear and if you do so, help them in their jobs. Holy Prophet also warned that on the day of resurrection, Allah will be opponent of the one who employs a worker and takes full work from him but does not pay him for his labor”[84]. Second Caliph Hazrat Umar implemented old age pension by saying, “It is far from being humane to let one go helpless in old age after getting service from him in his youth”. Islam encourages spending which is beyond one’s needs [85]without being wasteful or niggard[86]. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) said, “Verily the upper hand is better than the lower hand, and begin with your dependents [87]which is only possible when one himself is financially well.

Personal financial distress may impair personal wellbeing. People with higher debts and lower perceived net worth have lower subjective wellbeing than those having higher financial knowledge and larger savings accounts66.Pay for performance is regarded as a system of organizational control[88]. Participants in this study focused on a higher need for provision of competitive salaries, performance incentives, and inflation coverage of pay to employees in order to foster their financial wellbeing. Instable markets, variety of products, and modern marketing strategies have made the financial decisions very complex and challenging in global economies. In this scenario a need for personal financial management skills is more realized. Financial concerns, financial literacy, and financial wellbeing are recognized as more closely related to each other; higher the financial literacy would lead to higher financial wellbeing which will reduce the level of one’s financial concerns. Financial satisfaction is found associated with one’s personal wellbeing. Financial status, financial behavior, financial attitude, and financial knowledge are key determinants of financial satisfaction and can be improved through financial literacy as a component of organizational wellness programs to enable employee in better understanding and planning of their personal finances[89] .

Recognition: Emotional wellness:

Emotions, despite neglect, are major constituent of our psychosomatic configuration. People feel pleasure in honest appreciation and respect for their hard work. Employee recognition is as important as financial incentives. Employee morale drops when their good work is not noticed and is punished for mistakes immediately. Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) said, “The rulers and leader, who if you serve faithfully, will not appreciate your efforts, but if you commit a mistake they never forgive you, are curse for mankind” and that “Those who don’t thank people, cannot remain grateful to Allah”. “Allah will give reward to those who are grateful”[90]. He also said: “Whoever does you a favor, then reciprocate, and if you cannot find anything with which to reciprocate, then pray for him until you think that you have reciprocated him”[91]. When any one gets feeling of distress and lower morale, he should avoid anger as the Holy Prophet explains that "The strong is not the one who overcomes the people by his strength, but the strong is the one who controls himself while in anger” [92]and practice patience to achieve happiness as Allah commands to “Seek help through patient perseverance and prayers”[93].

Participating managers highlighted the need for setting up an effective system in place for employee recognition through performance recognition, respecting employees, trust, supervisor attitude, participative decision making, building a sense of ownership, counseling, and job satisfaction to develop patience among those who are emotionally more sensitive and unstable. In this regard, need for availability of a psychiatric consultant at workplace was also pointed out. Wellness counseling has been found as a very effective tool in improving motivational readiness for behavior change[94].

Socialization: Social wellness

Good families, friends, and supportive relationships that involve understanding and care are the source of happiness. Allah commands to“do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, the poor, the neighbor who is near of kin, the neighbor who is a stranger, the companion by your side, the wayfarer. Verily, God does not like those who are proud and boastful”[95]. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “Among the things that bring happiness to a believer in this life are a righteous neighbor, a spacious house and a good stead”[96]. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said, “Do not think little of any good deed, even if it is just greeting your brother with a cheerful smile” (Muslim) and that “To smile in the face of your brother is charity given on your behalf”. Allah says, “O Muhammad! People ask you where they should spend (for noble cause). Tell them whatever khair (wealth) you want to spend, spend it for your parents, relatives, orphans and poor people of society and travelers. And whatever good deed you will do, Allah knows it” [97]

Social and cultural values transform character traits[98]. To foster creativity, knowledge sharing, teamwork, and supportive social and professional relationships the participants emphasized over the need for encouraging informal get together, workplace interaction, social activities, social club, and social skills. They may also be encouraged to attend seminars and workshops, cultural activities, and provided with club facilities so that employees feel good on being a member of healthy and supportive organization[99]

Spirituality: Spiritual wellness:

Humans are spiritual beings and spiritual practices are closely associated with their better health and wellbeing. “What is in the heavens and the earth belong to Allah” [100]and He has perfectly created everything[101]. “Whatever is in the heavens and earth exalts Allah, and He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise. His is the dominion of the heavens and earth. He gives life and causes death, and He is over all things competent. He is the First and the Last, the Ascendant and the Intimate, and He is, of all things, Knowing” [102]. His is the dominion of the heavens and earth. And to Allah are returned all matters [103]. “So fear Allah, and keep straight the relations between yourselves: obey Allah and His Messenger, if you do believe. Believers are those who, when Allah is mentioned, fell a tremor in their hearts, and when they hear His revelations rehearsed, find their faith strengthened, and put their trust in their Lord; Who establish regular prayers and spend out of the gifts We have given them for sustenance: Such in truth are the Believers. They have grades of dignity with their Lord, and forgiveness, and generous sustenance” [104]. On the Day of Judgment neither wealth nor sons will avail, except a sound heart [105]. So “Whoever purifies it (heart) has succeeded; and failure is the lot of whoever corrupts it”.Allah is with those who believe[106], who fear Him[107], who restrain themselves and do good[108], who do right[109], who patiently persevere [110], and who steadfastly persevere [111]. So “Fear Allah, that you may receive Mercy[112].

Importance of relating to God is regarded as source of spiritual wellbeing [113]. Workplace spirituality refers to meaningful work, sense of community, organizational values, and compassion which improves corporate functioning through increased job satisfaction[114] and organizational commitment [115].It also influences enterprise performance and success [116]. Spirituality develops a sense of community and meaningful work among employees which predict perceived as well as objective organizational performance through healthy and satisfied workers[117]. Participants stressed upon the need for promoting a value based work approaches andwork place religious activities such as offering prayer, celebration of religious events, and study of Holy Quran and Sunnah. Dyadic spiritual mentoring can achieve sustainable workplace spirituality; inner life, meaningful work, and connectedness at individual levels[118].


Contemporary concept of wellness encompassing intellectual, physical, emotional, spiritual, social, occupational, financial, and environmental wellness is well aligned with the noble guidance of Islam to achieve the objective of individual and community wellbeing. In workplace context, there is a need to plan and implement wellness measures as indicated in this study. Most chronic diseases associated with lifestyle behaviors can be prevented or best managed through implementing the concept of holistic wellness. It is, however, of prime importance to undergo a need assessment to find where things are going well and where there is a need for improvement in a given context. This research highlighted various important measures as antecedents of employee wellness. Wellness professionals, policy makers, managers, and educationists may benefit from these findings to understand present wellness deficits and opportunities. The study gives expected assurance of managerial support for success of wellness programs in public sector organizations because of a larger participation of middle and top level managers in this survey.

Limitations and agenda for future research:

This study was limited in its scope to explore wellness perspectives within the current organizational context. Findings provide theoretical understanding of what is considered by employees as more important for enhancing their wellness and organizational performance. Other contexts, may consider these findings as a theoretical base for wellness need assessments. In this research organizational justice has been highlighted as a strong factor associated with employee wellness. Research on justice has focused more on job performance and not so much on wellness outcomes. Future research can explore in depth relationship between different kinds of justice with various dimensions of wellness to develop a better understanding on impact of justice or injustice on flourishing in life58.There is a doubt whether workplace wellness programs reduce costs through health improvement without being discriminatory or there exist some other valid reasons to initiate such programs85. Potential antecedents and consequences of workplace wellness promotion need more plausible and objective explanation within specific organizational and cultural contexts of Pakistan. Future research may also use findings of this study as the basis for developing a simple but comprehensive domestic scale to measure subjective as well as objective wellness of employees in work settings. There is a need for integration of health and wellness into national policy[119]. In this regards, further empirical evidence on wellness within different social, cultural, economic, and national contexts is needed so that same could dictate effective and promising public policy formulation by the governing and legislative authorities.


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