Mental health illness is one of the most worrying health concerns in different countries. Based on the World Health Organisation, there are an estimated 280 million people who suffer from depression. Depression, anxiety, and other disorders have a powerful economic influence on the lost productivity of our economy. There are many effective actions that a company or an organization can do to advocate mental health in a workplace that may result in productivity gain.
Working is good for our health because it gives us a purpose in life to achieve our goals and objectives, but a working environment that is negative can cause mental health problems. Workplaces that advocate mental health and provide support to people with mental disorders are more likely to weaken the percentage of absence and increase their work productivity. Companies or organisations must be responsible for supporting their employees with mental illnesses or disorders. It is common knowledge to everyone that unemployment can have an adverse effect on mental health. A good and well-managed organisation can help people with mental disorders by providing flexible schedules, addressing the negative atmosphere in the workplace, and many more.
Actions that we need to build mental health in the workplace
- It is very important that there is a promotion of work-life balance because, without it, work productivity is likely to decline. In the long run, a well-deserved treatment of employees would not hurt the company. Giving them the vacation they need and encouraging every employee to establish a full life outside of work. Employees who have hobbies, time with their family, have social lives, and time to take care of themselves make better employees.
- Make sure that awareness of mental health in the company is being discussed. Make it clear to everyone in the organisation to bring up any mental health concerns that they may feel they have because staying mentally healthy is important. It is also a must that higher officials inside a workplace should be educated about mental health and the signs and problems so that they can have a quick response.
- Companies should prioritize wellness. It is very important that our employees exercise, eat healthy foods, have a comfortable workplace, and participate in activities that promote a fit lifestyle and improve mental health. It is a must that companies help their employees establish healthy habits and participate in activities that promote a fit lifestyle and improve mental health. They should make wellness their highest priority because it can give good productivity results in return.
- Seminars and pieces of training in relation to mental health should also be a part of a company’s yearly event. Stress management, self-care or self-love, and flexibility can be good topics during these seminars and workshops.
- For employees who have family problems or for those who are starting a family, a company can also offer them family counselling as a part of their benefit. Mental health in the workplace is always associated with stress, so it is important to talk about stress management so that it can reduce the stigma that is always associated with mental disability.
The risks of having a mental illness
Below are some of the following risk factors for mental illness:
- There is a history of mental health problems within the family.
- A traumatic injury history
- Overdose or use of alcohol and drugs
- Very poor nutrition and lack of sleep.
- Life situations are stressful. The financial problem would be a great example.
- Traumatic experiences can also be a big factor in mental illness.
- People with low self-esteem and a view of life as negative. People who prefer to be alone and do not seek out nor interact with others.
- experience of abuse.
- Being in a toxic relationship with family, friends, or lovers.
- Being a victim of bullying and racial or gender discrimination.
- Growing up and living in poverty can sometimes cause mental illness in some people.
It is always assumed that an employee’s mental illness evolves outside the workplace. Mental illness can affect a person in different ways, so it is important for people in the workplace to know the factors involving mental issues. People need to know different actions in order to maintain a clear route to mental health.
Having good physical health increases your chance of having better mental health. This is why it is very important to exercise every day or at least regularly at your most convenient time. Try to go for a walk or a hike for 30 minutes every day or at least 3-4 times a week. Having a positive social life can also play a big part in your mental health.
Getting enough sleep is also good for decreasing stress levels. We should also make sure that mental health assessment is available to everyone. If a company can afford to hire another, it will be beneficial to hire an on-call counseling psychologist who will provide counseling to employees who need it.