Blog

10 October 2017

Breaking the taboo of mental health in the workplace

Today is mental health day and we feel it is vital to recognize and tackle mental health in the workplace. It’s time to challenge the workplace stigma about mental health and take the steps to reduce the risk for you and your colleagues.

Woman grabbing the shoulder of a man whose hand is raised

Working conditions and environment can have a huge impact on your mental health and, equally, someone's mental health can have a significant impact to perform well in their job. Statistics show that:

  • 1 in 6.8 people mental health problems in the workplace (14.7%)
  • 1 in 4 people will experience some form of mental health problem each year
  • Anxiety and depression are the most common mental health problem
  • 1 in 5 people take the day off work due to stress
  • 1/3 of men who suffer from mental health blame their jobs
  • 19.8% of women in employment are more like to develop mental health issues than men

Man with his hands on the back of a woman sitting forward in a massage chair

Let’s prevent mental health together

Mental health issues can affect any one of us at any time and with more understanding of the importance of reducing the dangers of stress in the workplace, the more we can do to prevent it. It's important to take the steps to support ourselves and fellow employees to prevent problems from escalating.

  • Speak up:  It is fairly common for people (especially men) to avoid talking about their emotional lives, yet we all have mental health just as we have physical health. Let’s break this taboo, speak to someone you trust, no matter how small or big the problem, there is always someone there to listen.
  • Take time out: If a piece of work is getting too stressful or a deadline is getting too much, take a breather.  Change your focus something a cup of tea, get some fresh air, take a walk or check social media. Taking that time out will allow you to go back to the task with a fresh mindset.
  • Show flexibility: To support yourself and staff to prevent/ experiencing mental health issues, look at practical ways to help manage their workloads or working hours.
  • Encourage wellbeing in the workspace: A happy place to work happy employees, create an environment which staff enjoy working in. Make sure desks are clear; create team building activities in and out of office hours, social events and wellbeing weeks.

Two women and a man sitting in chairs with their eyes closed

We tackle the taboo

We have recognized that staff need as much support as possible, so we have introduced a long list of wellbeing schemes. Last week we held a wellbeing week, where each day we introduced a new activity. This included a colouring wall, yoga, mindfulness, massages and personal safety. 

As a company we have recognized that staff need as much support as possible in the workplace, so we have introduced a long list of wellbeing schemes. Last week we had our wellbeing week where each day we introduced a new activity. This included a colouring wall, yoga, mindfulness, massages and personal safety. 

As of November 2017, we will also be introducing an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) which is a service that provides employees direct access to advisory support services. These services include medical advice, wellbeing advice, legal advice, manager support and most importantly face to face counselling where employees can seek private direct messaging to a counsellor.

We are harnessing the power to increase circulation, boost concentration, increase wellness and decrease stress levels. Together we can tackle mental health and make the workplace a better environment. 

Author

Grace Coleman

D2 Interactive