We seem to be taking more notice of mental health issues as a society; with greater emphasis on treatment and decreasing the stigma of asking for help. We can find articles and suggestions on self-care everywhere; discussing yoga, meditation, encouraging taking time to focus on mental and physical health equally. However, we still seem to struggle to shine light on mental health issues in the workplace. When one in four adults is experiencing mental health issues every year, we need to remember that those issues do not get left at the door when we go into work.
Many people still struggle to admit their mental health issues to their bosses and/or coworkers out of embarrassment or fear. This can be a never-ending cycle as individuals struggling with depression, anxiety, or other mental health concerns aim to hide their struggle, causing more stress and thereby exacerbating the issue. When we discuss efforts to better recognize and prevent the escalation of mental health issues, what better arena is there to focus on than the workplace, where so many of us spend a majority of our time?
A greater and more supportive focus on mental health can also benefit employers by increasing productivity and moral, decreasing absenteeism, and lowering overall stress levels of team members. Not to mention the health care costs that can be associated with untreated mental illness, which are often passed on as higher premiums for all employees. Most individuals whose mental health issues are recognized and treated early report greater efficacy and productivity at work as a result.
A healthy workplace culture begins with an emphasis on wellness of the whole individual; physically, mentally, and spiritually. This culture revolves around support and understanding, with workplaces being safe spaces to ask for help without fear of being judged or losing your job. Many workplaces now offer what is called EAPs, or Employee Assistance Programs, that will cover the cost of a few sessions of counseling for those who are struggling. If you would like more information or suggestions on how to promote mental health awareness in your workplace, click on the links below.
Main St. Psychiatry offers therapy and medication management for those struggling with mental health issues, and we are associated with some EAP programs. If you or someone you know is struggling, call us today to see how we can help.
Original material found at: https://hbr.org/2018/11/we-need-to-talk-more-about-mental-health-at-work